"This wonderfully researched and elegantly written book provides
the reader with a compelling and trustworthy portrait of how the
fathers of the church read the story of Adam and Eve. As Bouteneff
tells that story we see that the tale of the fall is always
contextualized within a narrative that celebrates the restoration
and redemption of the human race."--Gary Anderson, professor of Old
Testament, University of Notre Dame
""Beginnings" takes us back to the beginning of the scriptural
creation narrative and to the beginning of the Christian
appropriation of this narrative. The reader is initiated into
precursors of the Christian tradition (especially the Septuagint
and Philo) and then guided through the early Christian thinkers
(especially Origen) whose writings underpin current theological
reflection on Genesis 1-3. "Beginnings" allows twenty-first-century
readers to wrestle with issues ranging from creation and the image
of God to anthropology and gender--all in the context of the
community of faith that found its beginning, middle, and end in
Jesus Christ. Peter Bouteneff has done the church a valuable
service in this focused study."--Joel C. Elowsky, managing editor,
Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture, Drew University
"The question of the origin of humankind and the cosmos has
perhaps never been so hotly debated as nowadays, with 'evolution'
and 'creationism' presenting themselves as polar opposites. In this
fine book, Peter Bouteneff presents a carefully researched and
scholarly reading of early Christian readings of the creation
account in Genesis. What emerges is a range of interlocking
insights into God's creative purpose and the human place in the
cosmos. Genesis 1-3is seen as neither a myth nor an outdated
scientific account, but a poem of creation, yielding deeper
meanings upon closer ponderings. Bouteneff unveils the often
surprising riches of our patristic inheritance with a rare
intelligence and passion."--Andrew Louth, professor of patristic
and Byzantine studies, University of Durham
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