It has been said that "a good religious book is one that states what you already believe." While that is perhaps the way many of us evaluate books, it is not a good guide to finding a book that we will learn something from. This book verifies and supports a great deal of what we have been teaching about Genesis I through the years so we can find a lot of good things to say about it.
This little book challenges a lot of tradition. The author begins this challenge by reviewing some of the works of denominational creationism and then explaining "Where We Go Wrong in Bible Interpretation" in chapter 2. Gray's criticisms of creationists and religionists deal with hermeneutics and academic credibility, and much of it is totally correct. In chapter 3, he looks at the Hebrew and at assumptions people make about the Genesis account. We have long pointed out in this journal the problems involved in assuming that the first few verses of Genesis I are a summary and in not taking the Hebrew bara and asah to be literal descriptions of different processes. Gray does this well and then answers challenges posed by those who feel Exodus 20:11 poses a problem for his position.
Gray shares our belief that nailing any age to the biblical account is an error. He builds his own commentary of Genesis I and supports it scientifically. He then brings a strong case against denominational creationism by pointing out the problems it produces-mentioning the work of people like Setterfield, Humphreys, Schroeder, Morris, and others. He anticipates challenges to his ideas and has a series of appendices to explore some side issues.
This is controversial material, and I doubt any reader will agree
with everything written in this book. It is well written, reflects
Gray's engineering background, and is very useful in addressing
weaknesses in denominational creationist arguments. We recommend
it as an informative and useful book.
Back to Contents Does God Exist?, Nov/Dec 1996