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The Authorship of Genesis Is the Book of Genesis Real Or Fiction? Outline

TheAuthorship of Genesis: Is the Book of Genesis Real Or Fiction?


  1. Authorship controversy

  1. Severe attacks on the Bible

  2. Philosophical and scientific views

  3. the big-bang cosmology, secular archaeology’ and liberal theology

  1. Moses and Genesis authorship

  1. Author of the first five Bible books

  2. Non-Christians’ views

  3. Law of Torah

  4. J document

  1. Thesis: This essay deduces these myths and argues on the real writer of the book of Genesis.

  1. Opposing Viewpoint

  1. Different writers who they have identified by the use of alphabet letters including J, E, D, and P, authored the Pentateuch.

  1. Jewish and doctrinal liberal Christian academics

  2. The liberal Christian scholars

  1. Alphabet letters

  1. J documents

  2. E documents

  3. D documents

  4. P documents

  1. Developing the hypothesis

  1. Ibn Ezra

  1. Believed that Moses authored genesis

  2. Out of place verses

  1. Baruch Spinoza

  1. Supported and expanded Ibn’s view

  2. His peers disagreed with him

  3. Excommunication

  1. Jean Astruc

  1. Moses wrote the genesis book

  2. Genesis chapter and two

  1. Johann Eischhorn

  1. Advanced the Astruc view

  2. The J-E division

  1. Refuting the hypothesis

  1. Moses is the author of Genesis

  1. Moses was educated in Egyptian ways

  2. He conversed with God one-on-one

  1. Support from other Old Testament books

  1. Joshua, Kings, Ezra, Nehemiah, Daniel and Malachi

  2. the New Testament support

  3. Exodus 17:14

  1. Moses’ qualifications

  1. Law of Torah expert

  2. Eyewitness of most events

  3. He was God’s prophet at the time

  1. Conclusion

TheBible authorship has been a controversial topic among differentChristian groups with most denominations having varying viewpointsconcerning the writers of this holy book. Hence, this has resulted insevere attacks on the authenticity and credibility of the bible as areligious volume. These attacks have been coming from philosophicaland methodical cynics all over the world. Attacks on events such asthe big-bang cosmology, worldly archaeology, and open-minded theologyhave led to many people being misled that the Bible may not be trueand cannot be believed or trusted (Hodge and Mortenson n. p). Mosesand his authorship of the Old Testament’s first five accounts,particularly the Genesis book has received most of these biblicalattacks. These attacks have come from both non-Christians and theprofessing Christian doubtful of the Bible. Multiple theologicalbooks, seminary courses, Introduction to the Law of Torah, and themedia all champion the idea that Moses had no role in writing thePentateuch also referred to as the Law of Torah. These sceptics haveraised claims that there are at least four different writers whotogether wrote several parts of the books. They further claim thesebooks were written over an extended period and that one or moreeditors in this time joined all these books together into theircurrent form. The argument put forth in this regard says that the Jdocument was written by someone other than Moses in the Southernkingdom of Judah while the E documents were written by someone in theNorthern kingdom of Israel. This essay deduces these myths and argueson the real writer of the book of Genesis.


Thedisbelievers assign various parts of the Pentateuch to differentwriters who they have identified by the use of alphabet lettersincluding J, E, D, and P. This hypothesis originated from variousJewish and doctrinal liberal Christian academics between the lateseventeenth century and early nineteenth century (Hodge and Mortensonn. p). Between the centuries there were some proposals on who wrotewhat and when was the item written. The end of the nineteenth centurysaw the liberal Christian scholars settle on what the letters stoodfor and why they felt so. According to these scholars the meaning ofthese letters is as explained below.

 TheJ documents including its verses and sectors are believed to havebeen authored by a writer, who had proficiency in Hebrew and calledGod Yahweh throughout the text (Hodge and Mortenson n. p). The authoris thought to have accomplished this publication between 900BC and850BC.

 TheE documents they argued were authored by someone who liked to use thename Elohim while referring to God. They supposed these documentswere written between 750BC and 700BC.

 TheD, they argue that it stands for or refers to the book ofDeuteronomy. They thought this was authored by different writers or agroup of writers around the period of King Josiah`s rule in the 621BC(Hodge and Mortenson n. p).

 TheP they claimed that it stood for Priest. They support this claim byidentifying different text in the book of Leviticus and some books inthe Pentateuch that they say were authored by a priest or a group ofpriest during the Babylon exile after 586BC.

Intheir argument, they claim that about 400BC some editors supposedlyput together these four books with an autonomously written text toform the Law of Torah as it is currently known (Hodge and Mortensonn. p).

Developingthe Hypothesis

Inunderstanding the interpretation, it is important to comprehend howit was formed. The development of this hypothesis was started by aprominent Jewish rabbi known as Ibn Ezra. Although he believed thatMoses authored the Genesis book, he realized there were verses in thebook that appeared to be entirely out of place. However, he neverlooked into the matter (Hodge and Mortenson n. p). About 500 yearslater, Ibn’s view was picked up by another famous Jewishphilosopher Baruch Spinoza who asserted that Ibn had a valid reasonnot to believe that Moses authored the book of Genesis. Spinoza’speers disagreed with his contradictory views on Ibn perspective, amatter that contributed to his excommunication from the Jewishcommunity.

However,in his book Spinoza used the verses that were noted by Ibn andoffered more arguments against Moses writing the book of Genesis(Hodge and Mortenson n. p). This led to a barrage of attacks aboutthe Mosaic authorship of the Law of Torah across Europe with theleading critic being Jean Astruc. In his book, he believed that Moseswrote the book of Genesis, but he opened the door for more critics ofthe fact. He questioned how Moses came to know of events thathappened before him by asking how he came to collect the informationon the patriarchs (Grigg n. p). He also noticed the differences inhow God was referred to in Genesis chapter one and chapter two. Heclaimed the change in name from Elohim in chapter one to Yahweh inchapter two was evidence that Moses used different sources. Thedifference in how God is referred to, is what brought about the E andJ books meaning that the books were written by various authors.

AGerman scholar known as Johann Eischhorn advanced on the views ofAstruc by applying them to the whole Genesis (Hodge and Mortenson n.p). Initially, Eischhorn believed that Moses copied diverse previoustext in writing the book, but in advancing his work he conceded tothe views of the Jewish that proposed the J-E division. Following hiswork, other ideas against the Mosaic authorship emerged (Grigg n. p).Different scholar provided different points of view with manyconcluding that the Pentateuch was a collection of at least 39 otherfragments and could not have been written by Moses alone. Today thereare multiple variant views on the authorship of Genesis with the mostprevalent one being Julius Wellhausen view. Wellhausen has advancedthe hypothesis by putting dates to the sources arguing that none waswritten earlier than 900BC (Grigg n. p). These scholars have ledpeople to believe that Moses had little or no influence in thewriting of the book of Genesis raising questions if Moses wrote thePentateuch.

Refutingthe Hypothesis

Multipleevidence and scriptures in the Bible point to the fact that Moseswrote the book of Genesis. In their rejection of Mosaic authorshipthe scholar never considered the proof in the Bible that suggestedthat the Pentateuch was written by Moses. There are several witnessesin the Bible that can attest to Moses writing the book of Genesis(Hayes 118). These include the book of Joshua, Kings, Ezra, Nehemiah,Daniel and Malachi. More evidence is found in the New Testament wherethe division of the Old Testament was clear and well placed in theJewish mind. These were the Law of Moses, The Prophets, and theWritings. This made it easy for the Jews to relate to Jesus teachingswhen he was referring to the Law of Moses (Hayes 210). Multiple othersources in the Bible confirm that Moses wrote Genesis. For example,in Exodus 17:14 it is written, the Bible narrates how God orderedMoses to write an account of Joshua while promising to eradicate thememory of Amalek in the world (Hodge and Mortenson n. p). This was aclear indication that Moses wrote the Pentateuch something thescholars never considered.

Apartfrom the Biblical witnesses and evidence supporting Moses authorshipof the Pentateuch, Moses was also a fully qualified writer of the Lawof Torah. This is because he received his education from the Egyptianroyals and was not only an eyewitness to events that occurred duringthe period, but led most of the activities (Seed 70). The writing ofthe Pentateuch contained multiple references to Egyptian names ofpeople, places, as well as words and idioms used in Egypt. As aprophet of God during his time, Moses stood out as the only personwho could receive and be guided by the Holy Spirit in writing theinerrant text found in Genesis. No other Hebrew was more qualifiedthan Moses to author the Law of Torah.


Contraryto the belief of some scholars, there are multiple evidence both inthe Bible and in other sources that prove that Moses is the writer ofthe book of Genesis. Many of those who champion the idea that Mosesdid not write Genesis did not consider all the facts. Therefore,their views should not be used to sway Christians in believing whatis sufficiently explained in the Bible. As Gods Prophet, Moses wasthe most qualified candidate during his time that could have writtenGenesis. His writing was endorsed by Jesus and the other apostles inthe New Testament who based their teaching on the Law of Torah. Thosewho are in denial about the authorship of Genesis are only attackingthe reliability and the authority of the word of God.


Grigg,Russell.&nbspAdeadly hypothesis denying that Moses had anything to do with Genesis,based on spurious scholarship, is still widely being taught to futureChristian leaders.5 May 2011. Web. 28 Nov. 2016. Accessed at:http://creation.com/did-moses-really-write-genesis

Hayes,John H.&nbspInterpretingAncient Israelite History, Prophecy, and Law.Ed. Brad E Kelle. United States: Cascade Books, 2013. Print.

Hodge,Bodie, and Terry Mortenson.&nbspDidMoses write Genesis?&nbspAnswersin Genesis, 28 June 2011. Web. 28 Nov. 2016. Accessed at:https://answersingenesis.org/bible-characters/moses/did-moses-write-genesis/

Seed,Hal.&nbspTheBible Questions: Shedding Light on the World’s Most Important Book.United States: Inter-Varsity Press, US, 2012. Print.