Book Review: What the Bible Teaches – Old Testament Series

Genesis, J. Wesley Ferguson

Many readers of Truth and Tidings have purchased the entire New Testament series of commentaries, “What the Bible Teaches” by John Ritchie Ltd. There is no series of books in my library that can equal their value. Part of this is due to the fact that the writers had access to many sources that were not available to earlier writers. We encourage everyone to obtam them, as they are excellent sources of study material.

This commentary on Genesis by J. Wesley Ferguson is the first volume of the Ritchie Old Testament series. It is a careful and spiritually unfolding of the precious truths of this book of beginnings.


Although the author has consulted many writers on the subject of creation and its related subjects, he has not gone beyond the text of Holy Scripture in expounding the tremendous events of the six literal days of Genesis one. He is well aware of oppositions to the biblical statements of fiat creation, but has chosen to simply explain what the Scriptures teach. Micro-evolution (minor changes within species) is acknowledged as being an ongoing phenomenon, but macro-evolution (the change from species to species) is totally discounted as not only being a theory in crisis, but a supposition that amounts to no more than a myth. He writes, “God is the personal, unoriginated cause of everything, unconstrained by circumstances and unlimited in His power, carrying His purpose forward inexorably to its fulfillment.”

The creation of Adam and the creation of Eve from his side are carefully handled. There is a solemn and accurate explanation of the temptation and fall and the tragic results of sin to a fallen race and in a cursed earth.

The Flood

Three views are given of the identification of the “sons of God” in Genesis 6:2. He favors the view that they are rebellious angelic beings, but as is characteristic of this volume, he does not become aggressively dogmatic.

The description of the ark aims at accuracy, not going beyond what is written. The flood is emphatically said to be universal, a catastrophic event that totally destroyed an entire rebel civilization.

It is emphasized that these cataclysmic events on earth were all under the perfect control of the God who rules over all.

The Covenant keeping Lord

There is excellent treatment of the covenants made with Noah and Abraham. The call of Abram, his separation and testing are seen as being the means of bringing into the world the Redeemer who is uniquely “the son of Abraham.” The chapters about Jacob and his sons contain very practical lessons about how he was taught by God through grace.


We love Joseph as an illustration of the rejection, suffering and exaltation of the Lord Jesus. You will not be disappointed as you read these chapters about Joseph.

We highly recommend this book as being instructive, scriptural, spiritual and devotional.