Studies on the Book of Genesis

The Book of Genesis is the first book of the Old Testament. Genesis is also the first book of the Pentateuch, also known as “the five books of Moses.”

The name of the book comes from the Greek word genesis (γένεσις) which means “beginning.” The Hebrew name is bereshith (בראשית), a name taken from the first word of the book; it means “in [the] beginning.”

The book of Genesis is focused on the beginning of humanity, the beginning of humanity’s rebellion against God, and the beginning of their redemption. The beginning of humanity’s redemption is seen in the story of Israel, which begins with the call of Abraham.

The Historical Structure of Genesis

The book of Genesis consists of five closely connected sections.

a. Primeval History: Genesis 1–11

The first section, commonly called “The Primeval History,” deals with the history of the creation of human beings, with the migration of Terah from Ur of the Chaldeans, and with his death in Haran.

b. The History of Abraham: Genesis 12–25

The second section deals with the history of Abraham. This history begins with Abraham’s call in Haran and ends with his burial in the cave of Machpelah. It also includes the story of the birth of Jacob and Esau.

c. The History of Isaac, Genesis 26–27

The third section includes a brief history of Isaac. This section deals with the birth o Isaac’s two sons, Esau and Jacob, Isaac’s sojourn in Gerar, Jacob’s being blessed by Isaac, and Isaac’s death.

d. The History of Jacob: Genesis 28–36

The fourth section deals with Jacob’s departure for Mespotamia, his residence with Laban, his marriage to Leah and Rachel, the birth of his children, and his return to the land of Canaan.

e. The History of Joseph: Genesis 37–50

The fifth section deals with the history of Joseph. Joseph’s history begins with Joseph in the house of his father, his sale as a slave, Joseph’s life in Egypt, and ends with the death of Joseph in Egypt.


The posts below deal with several issues found in the book of Genesis. These studies deal with issues of translations, people, nations, and events that are found in the book of Genesis.

The Book of Genesis

Parataxis in the Book of Genesis

The Book of Genesis and Illegal Immigration


In the Beginning God

The Differences Between Genesis 1 and 2

The Spirit of God in Genesis 1:2

God’s Breath and the Human Act of Breathing

Translating Genesis 2:19

Let the Bible Be the Bible: A Rejoinder

The Book of Genesis, Creation, and Creationism

Devastating News for Traditional Believers

The Verb bara’: To Create or to Separate?


The Bible and Evolution

Evolution and the American Pastor

Science, Evolution, and Creationism

Dinosaurs in the Bible

Dinosaurs and Christian Faith

Ardi: The New Human Ancestor


The Bible and Sex

What the Bible Doesn’t Say About Sex


The Androgyny of the First Human

The Sabbath

Helmut Thielicke and the Devil


A Messianic Interpretation of Genesis 2:4


The Genetic Manhunt for Adam

The Bible and Pre-Adamic Man

Adam’s Sin: Listening To His Wife

Congenital Human Baculum Deficiency, Adam’s Rib, and the Formation of Eve

The Androgyny of the First Human


The Creation of the Woman in Genesis 2:18-24

Congenital Human Baculum Deficiency, Adam’s Rib, and the Formation of Eve

Translating Genesis 3:15 – Part 1

Translating Genesis 3:15 – Part 2

John Calvin on Genesis 3:15

The Serpent Was Right

Are Women Created in the Image of God? Part 1

Are Women Created in the Image of God – Part 2

Eve as a “He”

Genesis 3:16 and the ESV

Breaking News From Genesis 3:13, 16

The Permanent Text of the ESV

The Permanent Text of the ESV—No More!

The Status of Women in Israelite Society

Women and Christianity


The Prayer of Cain

Cain and His Offering

Where Did Cain Find His Wife?


The Bigamy of Lamech

The Sons of God

The Sons of God in Genesis 6:1-4

Rereading Genesis 6:4: Were They Really Giants?

The Sons of God and the Daughters of Men

The Nephilim

The Anakim and the Nephilim

The Nephilim and the Giants of the Bible

Bruce Waltke on the Nephilim

The Nephilim Again: A Response to Joe Cathey and Duane Smith


God’s Covenant with Noah

Noah: The Movie

“Noah”: The Movie and the Book of Genesis

Has Noah’s Vineyard Been Discovered?

If Noah Built the Ark Today

Noah’s Ark

Noah’s Ark Has Been Discovered – Again

The Shape of Noah’s Ark

“I Have Seen Noah’s Ark”

Inside Noah’s Ark

Inside Noah’s Ark: A Hoax

The Tragedy of the So-Called “Discovery of Noah’s Ark”

Noah’s Ark and Satellite Archaeology

The Ark of Noah Will Be Found: In Kentucky

Surviving in Noah’s Ark

The Sanctity of Human Life

Killing Human Beings

Nations of the Ancient Near East

The Land of Palestine

The Thracians in the Old Testament

The Mittani Empire and the Bible

The Hittites: A Historical Perspective

The Ancient Treasures of Ur

A Sumerian Temple at Ur

Treasures from the Royal Palace at Qatna

The Treasures of Nimrud To Be Sold


Ur and Haran: Abraham’s Background

Ur and Abraham: A Rejoinder to Tim Bulkeley

Lekh Lekha

The Covenant between God and Abraham

God’s Promise to Abraham

The Inheritance of Abraham

Abraham and His Altars

The Trial of Abraham

Abraham’s Sacrifice

Rereading Genesis 22:8: The Sacrifice of Isaac and the Preacher

Does God Wait On Us?

Understanding Genesis 14:14: “As Far as Dan”

The Acts of God

I Will Make of Thee a Great Nation: A Book Review


Melchizedek and Jesus

Sodom and Gomorrah

The Bible, Archaeology, and the City of Sodom

Archaeological Evidence for Sodom

In Search of Sodom and Gomorrah

Does Archeological Evidence Support the Biblical Story of Sodom and Gomorrah?

The Destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah


The Embodiment of God in the Hebrew Bible

Studies on the God Who Loses

The God Who Loses

What Happens When God Loses?

Why God Allows Himself To Lose

Standing Stones in the Old Testament

Standing Stones: Marking Our Defining Moments – Encountering God’s Presence

Bowing Seven Times

Bowing Seven Times at Ugarit

Wrestling for the Lord


Rebekah as a “Young Man”


Rachel: The Struggles of a Barren Woman

Give Me Sons


The Rape of Bilhah


Honor Killing: The Rape of Dinah

Rape in the Hebrew Bible


The Netherlands in Biblical Prophecy


Joseph’s Coat of Many Colors

How Can Someone Sell His Own Brother to the Egyptians?

The Old Testament in the News: Joseph

Joseph in Egypt: Evidence for an Egyptian Background for the Exodus

Defending the Bible: The King James Version

Studies on the Life of Joseph

Joseph – Family Dysfunction

Joseph – Career Success

Joseph – Overcoming Temptation

Joseph: Impacting Others

Joseph: Enduring Hardship

Joseph: Relational Conflict

Joseph – Extending Forgiveness

Claude Mariottini
Emeritus Professor of Old Testament
Northern Baptist Seminary

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If you are looking for other series of studies on the Old Testament, visit the Archive section and you will find many studies that deal with a variety of topics.

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3 Responses to Studies on the Book of Genesis

  1. llamapacker says:

    Thank you for this great list.


  2. Pingback: The Nephilim and the Giants of the Bible by Claude F. Mariottini | Crossmap Blogs

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