Church of God, New World Ministries

Bible Q & A

Q. Genesis 2:19 indicates that God created the beasts of the field after He created Adam. Doesn’t this contradict the account given in Genesis 1?
 
A. There is no contradiction. Chapter 2 of Genesis does not give the time order of creation. The correct chronological order of creation is stated in chapter 1. It gives a day-by-day description of the first six days of creation week.

Genesis 2, which is sometimes called the “second account of creation,” is a reiteration—not in time order—of what God created. A close examination will show that there are frequent insets in the Bible, not only in this creation story, but in many other parts of the Bible, as well as in histories written by men.

Chapter two emphasizes the reason and purpose behind the creation of man. It points out Adam’s responsibility in caring for God’s creation (Adam was to dress and keep the garden, verse 15), as well as his responsibility in naming each kind of animal.

As an interesting sidelight, God used the naming of previously created animals as an opportunity to show Adam that he, unlike the animals, lacked a female counterpart. This is the reason verses 21 through 25 concern themselves with telling just why and how the woman was created.

The animals were indeed created prior to man as stated in chapter 1. Chapter two is a reiteration of what God created, not in time order, and emphasizes Adam’s responsibility in caring for his environment. When properly understood, the events described in Genesis 1 and 2 mutually amplify each other.
 
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