All stories create a world and invite the listener, reader, or viewer into that world. The ancient Hebrew storytellers from whom we receive the Creation narratives knew how worlds come into being: They are spoken into being. When God says the word light, there is light. When God says the words land and sun and moon and stars and plants and creatures and human beings, each appears on the scene.
As the storyteller speaks the words of a story, we listeners see those places, characters, and objects in our mind’s eye. Instead of saying, “Let there be . . . ,” God just as easily could have said, “Once upon a time. . . .”
—Michael E. Williams, Spoken into Being: Divine Encounters Through Story (Upper Room Books, 2017)
When did you realize there are two accounts of Creation in the Bible? Why do you think this is so?
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God said, “Let the earth grow plant life: plants yielding seeds and fruit trees bearing fruit with seeds inside it, each according to its kind throughout the earth.” And that’s what happened. The earth produced plant life: plants yielding seeds, each according to its kind, and trees bearing fruit with seeds inside it, each according to its kind. God saw how good it was.
—Genesis 1:11-12 (CEB)
Prayer for the Week
Gracious God, thank you for being the original author of the greatest story ever told. Guide us as we learn to tell our own stories and discover how they connect with your story and with the story of humanity. Amen.
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(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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