Genesis is the first book of the Old Testament and is a collection of early Israelite information concerning the origin of things. The book is divided into two main parts: the history of early mankind, which discusses the Creation, the Fall, the Flood, and the Dispersion, and the second which concerns the lives of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph.
Two key verses to pay attention to:
Genesis 3:15 – “I will put enmity Between you and the woman, And between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, And you shall bruise his heel.” NOTE that Christ is that SEED of woman.
Genesis 12:3 – “I will bless those who bless you, And I will curse him who curses you; And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”
Genesis chapter 15 is quite important because it expounds on the Abrahamic covenant given in 12:1-3.
There are three specific promises:
The promise of a great LAND – “From the river of Egypt to the great river, the River Euphrates (15:8).
The promise of a great NATION – “And I will make your descendants as the dust of the earth” (13:16).
The promise of a great BLESSING – “I will bless you and make your name great: and you shall be a blessing” (12:2).
Observations of the Book of Genesis
1. The events of Genesis end some 300 years before the birth of Moses.
2. The Book of Genesis spans more time than all of the other 65 books of the Bible put together (2286 years of the recorded 4100 years of Bible history occur in Genesis.
3. Genesis divides itself into three geographical settings:
The Fertile Crescent – Chapters 1 – 11
Israel – Chapters 12 – 36
Egypt – Chapters 37 – 50
4. Chapters 1 – 11 explain WHY God chose Israel to be His redemptive people.
5. Chapters 12 – 50 explain HOW God chose Israel.
6. Genesis relates the beginning of almost everything, including: the universe, life, mankind, Sabbath, marriage, sin, death, redemption, and sacrifice.
The Four Great Events:
Chapters 1 – 11 lay the foundation upon which the whole Bible is built and center on four key events.
CREATION – God is the sovereign Creator of matter, energy, space and time. Man is the pinnacle of His creation.
FALL – Creation is followed by corruption. In the first sin, man (Adam) is separated from God. In the second sin man is separated from man (Cain from Abel). In spite of the devastation of the Fall, God promises hope of redemption through the Sees of woman (3:15).
FLOOD – As man multiplies, so to does sin. God is compelled to destroy mankind with the exception of Noah and his family.
DISPERSION – Genesis teaches the unity of the human race as we are ALL children of Abraham through Noah. Because of the rebellion at the tower of Babel, God fragments the single culture of the post-flood world and disperses people over the face of the earth.
The Four Great People:
Once the nations are scattered, God focuses on one man and his descendants through whom He will bless all nations.
ABRAHAM – The calling of Abraham in the twelfth chapter is a pivotal point of the book. God makes three covenant promises to Abraham that are foundational to His program of bringing salvation upon the earth: land, descendants, and blessings.
ISAAC – God establishes his covenant with Isaac as the cultural link with Abraham.
JACOB – God transforms Jacob from selfishness to servanthood and changes his name to Israel, the father of the twelve tribes.
JOSEPH – Jacobs favorite son suffers at the hands of his brothers and becomes a slave in Egypt. After his dramatic rise to the rulership of Egypt, Joseph saves his family from famine and brings them out of Canaan to Goshen.
Genesis ends on a note of impending bondage with Joseph’s death. Great need for redemption follows in the Book of Exodus.