Science in Christian Perspective

Letter to the Editor




From: JASA 18 (March 1966):

I would like to make a few comments in relationship to Stanley D. Walters' article, "The Development of Civilization in Ancient Mesopotamia" in the September issue of JASA. His conclusions that the events mentioned in the beginning parts of Genesis perhaps reflect the beginnings of civilization are interesting to note.

Over the past two years I have begun to emphasize that the Genesis account from chapters 2 through 11, which reflects beginnings to the mind of the ancient Hebrews, portrays in Mesopotamian fashion the start of civilization. As one studies the Akkadian epics of creation and the flood and the Sumerian version of the deluge, it becomes somewhat apparent, in spite of the differences, that all of these literary avenues including the inspired Old Testament account came from a common oral source. This is not difficult to understand since Abraham's roots were in Mesopotamia. The Hebrews under the inspiration of God delivered in written Semetic style these events uncluttered by the Polytheism of Mesopotamia.

When one attempts to relate Adam with Cro-Magnon, Neanderthal, Peking, or any other example of ancient man then the problems begin. Could it be that when God "breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being" that this was the point in time when man became unique and in the image of God unlike the other animals? Then one could easily agree with Walters' thesis that the events presented from Genesis two on need not go back previous to 5,000 B.C.

George Giacumakis, Jr. 
Assistant Professor of Near East History 
California State College
Fullerton, California