Gen 10.5, 32 and Gen 11

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This post has 11 Replies | 3 Followers

Posts 78
Garcia | Forum Activity | Posted: Tue, Mar 27 2012 11:07 AM

Just trying to sort out the chronological order of Gen 10 & 11.

Gen 10.5 & 32 tells us that the people had their own language. Yet in Gen 11 we read that the people were of one language.

Can we assume that Gen 10 simply tells us what happen after Gen 11 had taken place?

 

In the story line we can say Gen 10 is the story of the nations dispersing and Gen 11 is, "The rest of the Story"?

thanks for help.

Posts 22
Chris myers | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Mar 27 2012 11:40 AM

I believe that 11:1-9 is a separate story inserted to explain the wide variety of languages used by ancient Israel's neighbors.

Posts 6273
Denise | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Mar 27 2012 11:54 AM

Depends on how you read Gen 11.8 and 11.9. The writer could be speaking specifically to southern Mesopotaemia.

Great opportunity to use your Logos hebrew lexicons!


Posts 596
William Gabriel | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Mar 27 2012 11:55 AM

Garcia,

I would recommend that you peruse your commentaries on Genesis 10 and 11 in Logos if you have the time.

 

The conclusion you have come to is an entirely reasonable one. Genesis 1-11 appears to be written as a single unit, and even within that unit there is evidence of the author utilizing the "rest of the story" technique you mention. 

Consider Genesis 1 and 2. Genesis 1 is a broad recounting of God's work of creation, including man (Gen 1.26-27). Genesis 2 details the account of God's creation of man (Gen 2.4-7). It's not as if God created the universe, including man, rested (Gen 2.2) and then created man [again]. The author shows a willingness in the narrative to finish a history and then narrow in on a particularly important aspect of that history.

Posts 78
Garcia | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Mar 28 2012 5:47 AM

Thanks for all the help.

William, I did peruse my commentaries before I posted. Only two made mention of the language statement. One said that maybe this was in anticipation of what would happen, the other said perhaps this come after Gen 11. Both were ambiguous in their explanation, neither gave me confidence.

This is when I arrived at my conclusion but wanted to double check it. I thought others might have a larger commentary collection than I do and would be able to shed light on this passage.

Again thanks for the help.

Posts 13110
Forum MVP
Keep Smiling 4 Jesus :) | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Mar 28 2012 7:39 AM

Couple commentaries to consider:

Edit: plus a couple more (easy to open commentaries using "+" to the same verse):

Keep Smiling Smile

Posts 78
Garcia | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Mar 28 2012 8:07 AM

thanks for input on commentaries, will look into them.

Posts 78
Garcia | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 29 2012 5:20 AM

Keep smiling,

I looked up a couple of the commentaries you suggested in the Logos web and had difficulty locating two of them.

Commentary on the Old Testament

and

The Book of Genesis which had 5 different books by 4 differrent authors listed.

Could you provide more details on these resources?

I thank you for your assistance in sending the screen shots for me to review. That was a great help.

Garcia

Posts 13110
Forum MVP
Keep Smiling 4 Jesus :) | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 29 2012 5:35 AM

Garcia:
Commentary on the Old Testament

Keil and Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament (COT) (10 vols.) is included in Scholar's Silver and above

Garcia:
The Book of Genesis

The Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges: Genesis is in => The Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges (community pricing resource shipped on 9/9/11)

Keep Smiling Smile

Posts 126
Batman | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 29 2012 11:16 PM

Something that tends to get missed when reading Old Testament writings: chronology is not important to the writers. Theme is.
It clicked with me when reading Gen. 17 and 18. We're told the same story, but differently. In one passage, Abraham laughs. The other, Sarah laughs. However, both appear to be the same event.
We notice this also in Joshua. In Joshua 15 we see the dividing of the land. Joshua 24, he dies. However, when we read Judges 1, we see Joshua is already dead, as it is the same event as described in Josh 15.
Judges 4 and 5 demonstrate prose vs. poetry, while describing the same event.

So, yes, I would agree with your assumption, and I must say, I love the "Rest of the Story" line. However, keeping in mind what is meant by "earth" as suggested earlier, could add to the intended understanding, as well.Even still, knowing that thematic arrangement is more important than chronology, I'd go with that "explanation" primarily.

 

Posts 1
Kenneth Harrison | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Mar 31 2012 8:45 AM

Scripture seems to be a little ambiguous here.  And it is my experience that it is best to leave scripture ambiguous where it is ambiguous and not insert our own limited understanding  into God’s limitless word.  Also, just a loving thought, I would be careful about using terminology like “the real story” when comparing passages of scripture.  from an apologist standpoint, it can leave the false connotation that the other passage of scripture is either errant or unimportant, and we know neither is the case.

My Personal understanding in comparing the two passages is that they are two separate stories which the author had intended for Gen 11 to better complete the events of Genesis 10.  Much like if we were telling this story of Gen 1-10 to our children and my son Micah looks at me and says, “Daddy, if we all came from one man and woman, why do we have different languages?”   Hence the events of Genesis 11!  Perhaps the author asked himself that question while he was writing and realized he needed to fill in the gap.  As one brother mentioned, in OT writing it is the Story that reigns supreme, not chronology!

Posts 126
Batman | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Apr 2 2012 8:08 AM

A couple points need to be made.
1. Original poster (OP) stated "Rest of the story", NOT "the real story". HUGE difference. I believe the quotation marks indicate the op's references to the famous quote used frequently by the late Paul Harvey, who's commentaries would give little known facts to top stories, by stating, "and that is the rest of the story"
In Scripture, due in great part, to the Hebraic (actually Semitic styles) of writing of that day, we get only snippets of the entire story. That is to say, there is often more going on than we are told; the Bible is not a complete history-- nor is it expected to be. For example, the genealogies in Genesis are obviously not  complete, but rather have gaps- which is seen by the patterns, where the three genealogies each have 10 generations, each ending with 3 sons. Therefore, "the rest of the story" would be, there were others who lived and died in between these generations mentioned.
2.  God wants us to understand his word. Otherwise WHY even give it to us? And further, God does not want us to "check our brains at the door" when we open the Bible and read it. Instead, he tells us to be prepared to give an answer when we are asked. So, if something is ambiguous, we are to seek out the answers. As an example, why does Matthew have one genealogy while Luke has another? The fast and simple answer is, Luke traces Mary's genealogy. But, the problem is not solved with such an erroneous answer, because Luke specifically states "the father of Joseph", not, "the father of Mary"; stating that Luke is tracing back Joseph's line, as is Matthew. So, here we have an ambiguous and problematic passage, and you would have us search out the answer? That gives weight to skeptics who say we follow blindly, and stupidly. Sure, there are things we do not understand. But, there ARE answers, and we should NEVER stop seeking. When we do not know, because Scripture does not say, we should be cautious and not arrogant assuming we are right. Humility is always the best approach when approaching God's word. But, to not seek the answers, and leave things lie where they are? No. I don't think that is what God wants.
3. I see this was your first post. Welcome. I'm not super active here, but, I do enjoy a good debate, digging into Scripture, although, knowing that digging deeper is not as important as having the basics down pat (ie, "love God, love people", which Jesus tells us is the summary of all that had been written. But, it can be fun to discuss things with people-- esp. when people have different points of view. A real learning opportunity. And again, welcome.

Kenneth Harrison:

Scripture seems to be a little ambiguous here.  And it is my experience that it is best to leave scripture ambiguous where it is ambiguous and not insert our own limited understanding  into God’s limitless word.  Also, just a loving thought, I would be careful about using terminology like “the real story” when comparing passages of scripture.  from an apologist standpoint, it can leave the false connotation that the other passage of scripture is either errant or unimportant, and we know neither is the case.

My Personal understanding in comparing the two passages is that they are two separate stories which the author had intended for Gen 11 to better complete the events of Genesis 10.  Much like if we were telling this story of Gen 1-10 to our children and my son Micah looks at me and says, “Daddy, if we all came from one man and woman, why do we have different languages?”   Hence the events of Genesis 11!  Perhaps the author asked himself that question while he was writing and realized he needed to fill in the gap.  As one brother mentioned, in OT writing it is the Story that reigns supreme, not chronology!

 

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