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I am surprised by how much I enjoy this new study Bible. Its commentary is somewhat devoid of all the theological explanations which push a certain view. Instead you get the facts, as in the who, what, where, why and how.
The Holy Bible, New International Version Copyright 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible SocietyNIV Archaeological Study BibleCopyright 2005 by The Zondervan CorporationAll rights reservedPublished by ZondervanGrand Rapids, Michigan 49530, U.S.A.www.zondervan.comLibrary of Congress Catalog Card Number 2005934075The NIV Side-Column Cross-reference System, copyright 1984.The NIV Concordance, copyright 1982, 1984.Color Maps, copyright 2000, 2005 by Zondervan.Photography:See Acknowledgements and Photographic Permissions on page xvii.Cover image displays the ruins of Ephesus.The 'NIV' and 'New International Version' trademarks are registered in the United States Patent andTrademark Office by International Bible Society. Use of either trademark requires the permission of InternationalBible Society.The NIV text may be quoted in any form (written, visual, electronic or audio), up to and inclusive of fivehundred (500) verses without express written permission of the publisher, providing the verses quoted donot amount to a complete book of the Bible nor do the verses quoted account for 25 percent or more ofthe total text of the work in which they are quoted.Notice of copyright must appear on the title or copyright page of the work as follows:Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION . Copyright 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rightsreserved.When quotations from the NIV text are used in non-saleable media, such as church bulletins, orders ofservice, posters, transparencies or similar media, a complete copyright notice is not required, but the initials(NIV) must appear at the end of each quotation.Any commentary or other Biblical reference work produced for commercial sale that uses the New InternationalVersion must obtain written permission for use of the NIV text.Permission requests for commercial use within the U.S. and Canada that exceed the above guidelines must bedirected to, and approved in writing by, Zondervan, 5300 Patterson Avenue, S.E., Grand Rapids, MI 49530.Permission requests for commercial use within the U.K., EEC, and EFTA countries that exceed the aboveguidelines must be directed to, and approved in writing by, Hodder and Stoughton Ltd., a member of theHodder Headline Plc. Group, 338 Euston Road, London NW1 3BH, England.Permission requests for non-commercial use that exceed the above guidelines must be directed to, and approvedin writing by, International Bible Society, 1820 Jet Stream Drive, Colorado Springs, CO 80921.Printed in China06 07 08 09 10 11 12 /CTC/ 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1You will be pleased to know that a portion of the purchase price of your new NIV Bible hasbeen provided to International Bible Society to help spread the gospel of Jesus Christ aroundthe world!www.ibs.orgThe purpose and passion of International Bible Society isto faithfully translate, publish and reach out with God'sWord so that people around the world may becomedisciples of Jesus Christ and members of his Body.Introduction to2200 B.C. 2100 2000 1900 1800 1700 1600 1500 1400Creation, fallThe floodThe Tower of BabelAbraham's life (c. 2166--1991 B.C.)Isaac's life (c. 2066--1886 B.C.)Jacob's life (c. 2006--1859 B.C.)Joseph's life (c. 1915--1805 B.C.)Book of Genesis written (c. 1446--1406 B.C.)GenesisA U T H O R , P L A C E A N D DAT E O F W R I T I N GGenesis is, strictly speaking, an anonymous work. Historical tradition, however, as well as Biblical attestation, assigns authorship to Moses(see, e.g., Mk 12:26; Lk 24:27; Jn 1:45; Ro 10:5; 2Co 3:15). MosesÃ author ship would not have required him to write the entire book. Infact, all of the Genesis events took place long before Moses was born, indicating that he must have used sources.We might view Mosesas an editor/historian who, in addition to receiving God's direct and supernatural communication, drew together details of the family historiesof Abraham and his descendants, as they existed in the Israelite community in Egypt, into a single text.Scholars who question Mosaic authorship of the Pentateuch (Ge--Dt) generally support one or another variant of the DocumentaryHypothesis (see 'The Documentary Hypothesis' on p. 15).If Moses did indeed write/compile Genesis, he must have done so during the Israelites' exodus wandering period, probably between1440 and 1400 B.C. (see 'The Store Cities of Pithom and Rameses' on p. 86, 'The Pharaoh of the Exodus' on p. 98, 'The Date of the Exodus'on p. 106, 'The Hyksos and the Old Testament' on p. 121 and 'The Conquest of Canaan' on p. 310). Those scholars who suggestthat the Pentateuch was written as a single work during the exile typically place the date of authorship at about 550 B.C.A U D I E N C EGenesis records the stories of the creation, the fall into sin, the flood, the call of Abraham and the early history of the ancestors of Israel.The Genesis stories were probably circulated among the Israelites living in Egypt, reminding them of their familial and spiritual heritageand explaining their current situation. Genesis preserved individual stories (like those about Joseph) that could afford hope to God'senslaved people. Promises to Abraham about the future of his progeny (e.g., 15:1--7) also would have encouraged them. Later, Israelitesdirectly involved in the exodus, as well as their succeeding generations, no doubt read Genesis in order to understand this piece of thegreat saga of their national origin. The fulfillment of God's historical promises to the patriarchs served as a testimony to his continuingfaithfulness.C U LT U R A L FA C T S A N D H I G H L I G H T SGenesis records the birth and early history of humankind. Not only did God create the physical world, but he also formed man and womanin his own image and endowed them with the gift of free will. Over time changes took place, including humanity's fall into sin and theresultant great flood.Tribes, cities and civilizations ebbed and flowed, rising and declining in a rhythm that has characterized human history ever since.Centuries passed, and at some point God chose to concentrate his particular attention on one individual from an ordinary, idol-worshipingfamily---who in his turn opted to listen and obey. From such unimpressive roots began the triumphant---if often temporarily tragic---saga of redemption history.T I M E L I N EINTRODUCTION TO G E N E S I S 3A S Y O U R E A DNote how quickly and irreversibly the human race turned its back on Eden and on perfect fellowship with God (chs. 2--3) and how Godresponded (chs. 4--8). Then, through the unlikely choice of a still-childless patriarch, God began to form the family from which the Israelitenation would spring (chs. 11--30; 49). Study the life of Joseph, from his years of slavery to his meteoric rise to power in a strange landto his revelation to his unsuspecting brothers (chs. 42--45). This book explains how and why the Israelites came to live in Egypt, settingthe stage for what would happen to this special people in Exodus and beyond.D I D Y O U K N O W ?* An individual in the ancient Near East could claim rights to a well on someone else's land (21:25--30).* The bride price paid by a husband's family was to be held in trust to provide for the wife if she were to find herself abandoned orwidowed (31:14--16).* A man's seal, cord and staff were symbols of his individual and corporate identity---the ancient equivalent of an I.D. card or signature(38:17--18).* Both the Egyptians and the Babylonians compiled 'dream books,' containing sample dreams with keys to their interpretation (40:8).* The philosophy behind the Egyptian practice of embalming was a belief that the body was to be preserved