Visual Comparison: Genesis vs. Other ANE Myths

John Walton, Christian scholar from Wheaton University, presented side-by-side comparisons of various ancient near eastern (ANE) creation myths with Genesis in his book “Genesis 1 as Ancient Cosmology” (ref. 57). His tables are quite detailed, listing specific documents from Egyptian, Sumerian, and Akkadian texts (tables 2-1 and 2-2). I have created a condensed version of this information in the two tables below for quick visual comparison. The first compares theological and thematic features, while the second compares the metaphysical elements included.

It should be noted that these other cultures were far larger, regionally dominant, and antecedent to the Hebrew culture and creation account. The cosmology and thematic elements of the Genesis account were derivative of this pre-existing cultural context. Though they all differ in narrative and in theology, they are similar in how they see the world – and in what they do not see. There remains no insight in any of these myths regarding such things as:

  • Dinosaurs or extinct creatures
  • Disease-causing micro-organisms
  • A sense of cosmic scale
  • Human emergence by evolutionary descent

They are all, as it were, written at the same grade level. In terms of historical representation, they all fall down equally. But there is only one for which moderns simply will not concede this.

Summary of Features Appearing

Feature Comparison of Genesis and ANE Myths

Summary of Elements Appearing

Element Comparison of Genesis and ANE Myths

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