Figured I should probably start reading through the bible again. But I have absolutely zero interest in writing about every single verse. So I’m trying something new by reading the chapter and summarizing it. Feel free to read along if you like. Or just read my summary and you’ll get the gist.
God created everything. Please don’t take the details literally because they aren’t going to make sense and they’ll just make God look like He possesses the scientific knowledge of a Bronze Age priest.
In which God recreates everything again but in a different order, and plants Adam in a utopian garden which also happens to be in the middle of a cosmic warzone and leaves the gates unguarded because that will definitely not come back to bite everyone in the behind later, except it totally will. Adam names all of the animals, and God realizes that he plumb forgot to make a woman for Adam despite having done so at the end of the last chapter. So, God clones Adam, but makes him a her, making God the first Physician to gender reassign someone and God tells them to get with the baby making and don’t eat from that one tree over there because death.
In which leaving your two new naïve human kids unguarded in the middle of a war zone totally does come back to bite everyone in the behind when a talking snake shows up and convinces Eve to eat from the no-no tree. And then Eve convinces Adam to eat from the no-no tree. Meanwhile, God is… somewhere… as humanity unwittingly chooses to supposedly unleash thousands upon thousands of years of death, murder, rape, torture, cancer, heart disease, human trafficking, racism, sexism, pain, suffering, and dismay upon their children followed by supposed eternal torture at the hands of God forever and ever.
Geez, you would think He would have at least showed up to yell at the kids to stop listening to talking snakes and knock that shit off BEFORE they ate the poisoned fruit.
Instead, God shows up afterwards and redefines death to a very slow death that’ll take 80-90 years or so, then tells the kids that Eve has to be subservient forever and have pain in childbirth and Adam has to work the land to eat until he dies and goes to hell. Because that seems fair.
In which Adam and Eve have some kids, God accepts Abel’s sacrifice, but not Cain’s thereby pissing Cain off. God gives Cain a warning do turn that frown upside down, but curiously no warning about not beating his brother to death with a rock. Should have been a bit more specific there, God. instead of telling Cain not to kill Abel, shows up and tells Cain that He saw the murder and bad, Cain! Bad! Cain wonders how he can protect himself from the others who will want to kill him for the whole fratricide thing and God gives him a tattoo saying “Dear Others, don’t kill this guy or I’ll be mad.” And Abel says, “Hey, uh… I could have really used one of those about 10 minutes ago, God…” And God says, “Ewww… yeah… sorry.”
We also get the origin of polygamy and Adam and Eve knocking boots again and producing more kids. We do not get the answer to the question, “Where did Cain get his wife?” Or who the Others were that Cain was worried would want to kill him.
And people begin to call on the name of the Lord, though I’m not sure why at this point, as God has mostly been a bystander to all of the horrible things that have happened and hasn’t done much to stop any of it.
I think the important thing to take away from this section is that it seems pretty obvious that Genesis is not supposed to be a literal history of humanity, but a collection of stories and myths that describe the human condition and try to grasp with questions of existence and the problem of evil. There is some truth within it, but don’t get bogged down by the details and try and build a cosmology around it where the Earth is 6,000 years old.