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This book is a commentary in the form of a journal. It is meant to be something like a diary kept by a tourist or a spy of his travels in a strange land, recording questions and observations and opinions on everything he sees for other travelers on the same road. It could be also called a dialogue because the author records the conversation that he has with Genesis as he moves along, and the conversation he has with himself in the privacy of his motel room. In both ways it is the account of a journey with the idea that it may be of some use to others traveling the same road. The author is writing as an amateur to other amateurs. He is not a professional theologian nor a biblical scholar, and while his intent is to think as deeply and truly as he can, he is not doing so as a professional. There are several advantages that an amateur may have over a professional in a case like this. First the amateur can be much bolder in what he questions and in the answers he considers. The professional always has something on the line, always something at risk, namely his reputation. He cannot venture far off the beaten path without being in some danger of losing his respectability. The amateur, on the other hand, has little respectability to lose and little reputation to risk. What Dr. Boswell would not be able to risk in mathematical writing he can be quite at liberty to risk in this project. It can be exhilarating. Secondly the amateur has a much friendlier connection with the average reader. The amateur is something of an equal with the average reader, though presumably with something to say worth the hearing. Since they are introduced as equals, the reader can feel safer, less threatened, more entitled to join in the conversation that the author is trying to create. With a professional author there is always the sense of obligation that one should not argue back with the scholar; only another scholar has the credentials to join in their conversation, and the rest of us must sort it all out as best we can. But with this book there is no need of restraint; anyone can be drawn in to the discussion, anyone can feel entitled to disagree, with impunity. It can be exhilarating. This book is not meant to be a "Bible made simple" book. It is written by someone who loves to think and is written for others who love to think. It is written by someone who is not timid about difficult questions and is written for others who have no fear of such things. But most of all it is a book written for the pure joy of the thing and for those who might share that joy.

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