Genesis! The very word, uttered alone, brings all kinds of imagery to the minds of men, probably fuelled by those huge stage sets built by older film makers, whose films employed famous actors, thousands of extras, and not a few chariots and horses, set against a magnificent backdrop of deserts.
Christians, too, have images in their minds, again mostly provided by TV or films. But, are their images correct? This long series will hopefully bring the whole book to life, not by making it like a film, but simply by telling the account as God gives it, properly interpreted.
This is the third time I have taken the whole of Genesis as my study book. The first time, almost 30 years ago, I read it with awe. Today, after many more years’ experience at studying and teaching God’s word, I look forward to seeing the book through even fresher eyes. Genesis is still a book that demands awe!
In the first chapter we shall come face to face with God the Creator. We will even catch a glimpse of the Christ. Without a trace of doubt or the slightest nod toward modern science, I will teach a chapter that I claim to be unashamedly literal. (2012: See my book on this subject).
It is my contention that if God is true (which He is), then what He says is true (which it is). If God says He made the world in just six literal days (and He does), then that is sufficient for me! If I am convinced by scripture I need not be convinced by science. Like Christian teachers of centuries ago, I believe solidly that if God is true then what He says is good science (‘science’ here meaning a body of knowledge). Think about it. Whatever God says is true. He cannot lie.
Therefore, using a logic that is consistent with scripture, whatever is contained in Genesis chapter one must be absolutely true in every respect. It does not matter what scientists say, for they cannot muster one single shred of evidence against God or against Creation.
There are many theories of beginnings. Evolution is only one of them. I do not care what science says about the beginning of this earth or the universe – if what is said is not scriptural, then the scientist is a liar. It is as simple as that. Good theology is good science.
Some scientists say this is absurd. They claim that Christians do not really understand the theories they put forward. This is possibly true, but it does not detract from the facts of scripture. If a scientific theory contradicts scripture, then it is the science that is wrong, not scripture! This is the attitude I want all readers to have when studying this marvellous book with me. If you do not have this vital attitude, then you will not enjoy the study and may as well give up right now. Be assured, that without this proper attitude, you will slide into error.
Thus, I make a demand in this work (because God demands it) – that you, the reader, believe, totally and implicitly, in the word of God as it is written. Where it is literal we shall be literal. Where it is figurative, we shall be figurative. It is the proper approach to use with scripture. Do NOT accept criticism that the studies will be those of ‘fundamentalists’ who see everything ‘literally’. The studies will be figurative or literal according to the texts themselves. My interpretation is always determined by what scripture actually says, and not by my own choices or opinions (or the opinions of others). If, at any point, I offer a rare opinion, then I will make this clear, so that opinion is not taken to be Biblical fact.
All studies use the 1611 King James Authorised Version of the Bible (AV), because I consider it to be the best for studying purposes and the most accurate - I will not argue the point with anyone (see series on the KJAV). As is usual with my studies I will give the full text of the chapter together with a commentary on each verse, in as much detail as is necessary.
I would urge any college students or school pupils not to be alarmed! I will be giving you an account of Creation that will probably fully contradict anything you have been taught in school or college. If you are a Christian, you have no option but to accept the truth of these studies, and to judge your science courses to be wrong. I will not apologise for this. Either God is true or He is not, and if He is not, He does not exist at all.
As you do your science studies academically, just remember that no science can produce a final theory of beginnings. Not one! They can postulate and even jibe at Christians, but they have nothing to offer by way of solid facts. Thus, in terms of theoretic argumentation, your Christian view is just as valid as their own. That is logical.
Do not be afraid of science. Its observations are usually very good – it is the interpretations of the observations that often get rather silly. And, on top of that, scientists are not above nonsense and lies, as academics already know. Those wonderfully colourful and breathtaking TV series by naturalists might look grand, but I can drive a tanker through the massive flaws in their presentation of the so-called facts! So, just take it easy and read God’s word as it is meant to be taken – as God’s word! That is, true and factual.
Let scientists laugh. Let teachers boil with anger. It is their problem, not yours. You are entitled to your view, held with courtesy but firmness. I have taken many courses and attended several colleges and I can tell you now that your teachers are only as good as their sources. I have written course essays that fundamentally question what I have been taught…and that is good research! My examiners may not have liked it, but they could not deny good research.
You will come to see the huge breaches of good research as you go on in life, but for now accept my word for it! And a little tip for your exams – if referring to evolution, just begin your words with “Some scientists say…” (or something like it). This is quite accurate, for not all scientists (many of whom are not Christians) believe in evolution.
If we fail to understand the very first chapter in our Bible, we will fail to do justice to the rest of it. A proper understanding is therefore vital. Be enthusiastic when reading this study, for I am! It is a study of the very first moments of our planet’s history, full of a power and glory you will not find anywhere else. Forget those theories that say it was copied from this or that story found in some false religion. This is the genuine account given by God Himself. It is to be believed. The other accounts are not genuine (or, they are copied from Genesis), so ignore them. It does not even matter what denomination you belong to, for truth is truth.
God’s power cannot be monitored or measured, because it is limitless and outside of time itself; we can merely see part of the outcome. God is everywhere. His might can only be guessed at. He is greater than anything we can ever imagine and even when we see Him actually in heaven we will never be able to grasp everything about Him.
He is the Creator, the King of all kings, the Sustainer of everything, including the breaths we take. If, for just a brief moment, He stopped His powerful influence on the universe, it would all collapse. Whilst it is true that He gave the universe its own momentum, to carry on like a clock, it is His power that keeps that clock going, not the clock’s mechanism. If He removes His power, all must crash and tumble and destroy itself.
So, accept this study as you wish – but my intention is to show the Almighty acts of God, powerful and wonderful beyond understanding. If you come away from this study without a sense of awe, then you are either spiritually dead or badly prejudiced! Read, then, expecting to be delighted by what God Himself tells us in His word. It is true and it is unique…and it will stir your soul. Remember – all other religions are false, so forget their stories.
The many theories about who wrote the book (Moses or not?) are irrelevant to our study of the book itself (though I firmly believe it was Moses). All we need to know is that men, inspired by the Holy Spirit, were used by God to write all of scripture, and they wrote it honestly, as directed by the Holy Spirit. Be moved mightily by what you read, as God produces something out of nothing (see my article on this topic), an act made momentous because no man can ever produce something out of nothing – it is impossible! Only God could do it, just as only God can be truly eternal, without beginning or end, uncreated.
As you read, remember that I am giving just an outline, for I could write an entire book* to describe the contents of this first chapter! (Please also bear in mind that my computer may not be able to reproduce all Hebrew spellings, though they are given in English equivalents. In such cases I may need to resort to similar representations). (*This has now been written).
“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.”
No book can begin with anything so spectacular as this! Immediately, we are given the setting for Creation – God did it, Himself, without help. He did so ‘out of nothing’, but few understand what this really means. Someone on the look-out for errors, will immediately demand how I know He made everything out of nothing, for the text does not say so (see later note on Jewish theology). The answer is so obvious – we are told that He made ‘heaven and the earth’. If He made everything when it did not exist before, then He made it all out of ‘nothing’!
‘Nothing’ in human terms means that something is missing – hence ‘no-thing’. But, theologically, ‘nothing’ in this chapter has a meaning that no man can grasp, for even the ‘no-thing’ that preceded Creation did not exist. (See separate article on ‘nothing’). Suffice to say that the ‘nothing’ known to human beings is a concept rooted in time and space, whereas the ‘nothing’ God created out of is beyond human concept, a mystery that no man can solve or find the answer to, or experience. Scientists can muse as long as they wish, but they will never find or explain the actuality of creation.
The ‘beginning’ here is re′shiyth. It means the first or beginning. It is the same as ro′sh, with the added notion of ‘front’ or ‘best’. The beginning of what? It refers to the start of time, for eternity has no beginning or end. This first verse, then, gives us the start-date of time, an element created just for the duration of earth’s present existence, which can be calculated as a mere 6000+ years... not billions, or even millions!
We are shown in The Revelation that a new earth will be created after this present one has been destroyed. When that happens it will be created in eternity, without time. Time, then, is only for human beings on this present earth. It did not exist beforehand and will cease to exist when God winds up everything. Though I say that time is just for this present earth (so that we can measure seasons and days), the same applies to all of creation, right out to the farthest unknown galaxies, for they came into being at the same time and will cease at the same time.
The name given to God in this opening text is ′elohiym. Straight away we are faced with the idea of more than one person, for the word is the plural of ′elowahh, meaning ‘God’. (It can also refer to a false god, but not in this text). Thus the name ‘God’ in this text is plural – not less than two persons! It is thought that this name is an elongated form of ′el, meaning mighty one, the one true God, Jehovah. (We could go on with the root words, but they will take us beyond the purpose of this study).
In other words, the ‘one true God’ is several in persons. The name speaks of his divine rulership and special attributes as God. It also names Him as the only true God. This has to be, for only one thing or person can be true – all the rest are false. There is no doubt, then, that this name alone opposes the claims made by Islam, for example. If the God of the Bible is the ‘one true God’ then any others who make the claim are bound to be false. Also remember that God’s name is plural, and that this again opposes Islam in particular, which rejects the idea of Christ as God, or God as a plural Being.
This one true God, with at least two persons, ‘created’ the heaven and the earth. Created is bara′ and this word, like so many in scripture, can have one of several meanings. It generally means to shape or form something, or to create (in the Hebrew this always means God as the subject). It particularly speaks of the making of earth and heavens (but not the abode of God), of Man, of new conditions. It can also mean transformation, but as we are talking about creation from nothing, this meaning cannot apply. It means ‘something new’.
His first act was to make heaven and earth as entities. As is usual in Hebraic writing structure, a summary verse often precedes a longer, more detailed, explanation. Thus, verse one is just the summary of what is later described in more detail, a shortened version of the whole.
‘Heaven’, shamayim, means far more than sky. It includes the visible heavens (sky and atmosphere), what we now call ‘outer space’, and even the abode of God ‘Heaven’ (but not in this context). This is quite in order for it is a summary, not a word for a specific part of creation. Here we are being told that Creation consists of two main elements – the earth and… everything else. It is interesting because the summary does not suggest any other inhabited worlds (the existence of which would produce some very complex questions! I personally do not believe there are any other inhabited planets).
‘Earth’, ′erets, refers only to the world we inhabit, the ‘whole earth’, land. It also refers to those who would come to live in its territories, countries, and districts. Later it would also be used to mean Canaan, Israel, or even Sheol, and much more. But, in this text, it generally means the whole earth. See why I say that the first verse is only a summary?
(We also have the meanings given by Hebrew scholars, who interpret the text as saying “When God began to create the heaven and the earth”, which underlines the summary idea. On occasions Jewish interpretations are correct, but they also have many errors of interpretation, so beware).
“And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.”
We now come to a text that has been misused and abused by theorists. There is the absurd and unbiblical idea that God created two worlds, the first being in chaos. This comes partly from dispensationalists, but many others hold to the same error. It is an error because God does not create anything that is chaotic. He is the God of order! It is also an error of interpretation, based on selecting meanings from the Hebrew that do not fit the actual context.
We are told that God firstly created the material of the earth as one large bulk of matter, and it was ‘without form, and void’. The word ‘without’, tohuw, can mean confusion, unreality, or even chaos. But, it can also mean without form, empty, nothingness. As God does not create chaos, we can deduce that interpretations suggesting chaos or ruin would be alien to the text.
The word ‘form’ is the same as ’without’ for they are the same word. ‘Void’, bohuw, simply means emptiness or void. It can also mean ‘waste’ but the meaning does not apply to this case, as we have seen. The close context (the chapter) and the wider context (God’s nature and character) mean that we must choose interpretations of ‘without form’. We cannot choose any meaning that suggests chaos, without slandering the Lord with blasphemy.
Look at the parallel idea of a sculptor. He picks a lump of stone or marble that has no particular shape. Then, he sculpts it until it resembles a shape. God first created a lump of earth. Then, He crafted it into a world fit for habitation. No chaos and no ruin! This is further suggested by the root of bohuw, which just means to be empty. To be ‘empty’ is far removed from being ‘chaotic’! There were not, then, two creations and two worlds. This is a theory (the ‘Gap Theory’) that is inserted between verses one and two, without justification, without proper thought about Who God is, and without any literary excuse.
We are told that at the time God created this mass of earth, there was ‘darkness’. As human beings we cannot contemplate what true darkness is really like. We cannot think of a world without light. We can grasp the idea that we can turn off a light, or that the sun seems to disappear, and then returns – but the idea of total darkness is outside our comprehension.
I have been down a coal-mine several times, with tours, wearing coal-miners’ lighting gear. When we were deep into the coal seams, the guide told us to turn off our helmet lights. The first time I did this tour and the lights went out I felt someone grab my arm tightly – it was a young lady next to me! I was not surprised, for the darkness was like nothing we had ever known before – it was, literally, pitch black and ‘empty’; it seemed like I was floating in nothingness.
The darkness, chosheck, means literally no light. It can also figuratively mean a secret place. This latter meaning does not apply in this text. So far, the meanings for words are literal, not figurative, and this pattern continues throughout the chapter. ALL of Genesis 1 & 2 is literal, historical fact.
That this is so is found in the root word, chashak – to be black or hidden. So, we have a mass of land created in total blackness. This blackness was on the ‘face of the deep’. The ‘face’ is paniym or the ‘presence’. The ‘deep’, t@howm, refers to the abyss or sea. It can also mean Sheol, but not in this text.
Though referring to the sea, the whole earth was without light. We cannot understand this, but at this time only the earth existed. The heavens did not. We cannot imagine that outer space did not exist, but only the earth was created at this time. Outside this was absolute nothing. It is important to understand that light did not exist either, or any of the support systems known to science, such as gravity. That is, outer space, the earth’s orbit, etc., did not exist, and neither did light! Can you grasp that? I cannot!
The ruwach of ′elohiym ‘moved upon the face of the waters’. Again, we have a number of possible meanings for this word for ‘Spirit’. Note that in the English text the word is started with a capital letter, giving it significance, and making it a subject. In some texts it could mean wind, but not here, for the wind did not yet exist. It could mean the ‘mind’, but only the mind of God existed at this time, and such a meaning would not make any sense to us.
It could mean the breath of God, or His power. It can also mean an angel of God. In this text the actual identification of this Spirit is not given, so some cannot say with certainty that it means either the power of God or a person. Hebrew scholars do not see the Spirit in this text as a person. Personally, I see Him as a Person, because of what the Spirit does.
The Spirit ‘moved upon’ the waters, rachaph. It can mean to become soft or to relax, but that cannot be the meaning here. The other meaning is to hover, like a mother bird over its nest, which suggests, possibly, ‘somebody’ (possibly Christ) rather than ‘something’ (such as breath). The Spirit, then, hovered over the sea. Note that there was no visible land-mass (which was under the sea) only water. Thus, the Spirit hovered over the whole earth.
Interestingly, in Rabbinical writings, the Holy Spirit, Ru′ah ha-kodesh, is not a person but a ‘spirit of prophecy’ that comes from God and rests on particularly holy people. Why is this? We must remember that the Jews no longer have a true perspective on truth, and though they have the Torah, etc., their interpretation of it is very different from the Christian one. The reason is partly to do with their rejection of Jesus as the Messiah.
Similarly, Islam sees the Holy Spirit as coming through an intermediary, named Gabriel. One Jewish writer of note, Judah Halevi, even suggests that the Holy Spirit is a ‘fine substance’… an idea that is extremely close to the spiritist notion of ectoplasm. In modern days, the Jews tend to think of the Holy Spirit as an influence, not a person.
These things are mentioned so that Christians do not take their interpretations from Jewish scholars, for their theology is not correct in many areas of scripture. Once Christ is removed as the active Son of God, the whole idea of the Trinity collapses. Whether the Spirit of Genesis 1 is an angel, or the Holy Spirit, or Christ, is a matter only for Christians, for Jews will not see Him as a person. In many ways, Jewish theology on this issue is close to charismatic thought, where the Spirit is often referred to as ‘it’.
The Jewish theology of creation is further muddied by their early ‘Book of Creation’, Sefer Yezirah (closest English wording), in which creation is said to have been effected through ’32 secret paths of wisdom’. These paths, plus the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet, constitute ‘creation’. The Christian student ought not look into this, for it became a feature of the Kabbalah, a Jewish occult belief system.
The other main Hebrew theology of Creation, based on the ancient Old Testament text, notes that the verb br′, used in the first sentence, does NOT imply that everything was made from nothing. Indeed, to be precise, the concept of creatio ex nihilo (creation out of nothing) is not found in Genesis, but in 2 Maccabees 7:28. In this case the Rabbis are correct, and teach that the word means ‘a divine activity that is brought about effortlessly’. This indeed describes any action of God, and it is to be found throughout scripture. However, creatio ex nihilo is implied by the context and is logical (because, otherwise, Creation was made out of substance already in existence).
That the ‘Spirit’ of Genesis 1 is none other than Christ, is hinted at in the New Testament, Ephesians 3:9, where we are told that God “created all things by Jesus Christ”. The very word bara′ always, in every case, makes God the subject… or, as we now see, Christ. However, this is hinted at, and is not a fixed interpretation. Even so, Christ was party to Creation, even if He was not the ‘Spirit’ in the text.
What we cannot tell from the immediate text is whether or not God had an abode before the creation, that is, Heaven (the spiritual home, not outer space or the skies). If He did, then it is possible that Heaven is in another dimension unknown to man and science. Though this is speculation, it seems most rational, for, logically, His abode implies eternal existence.
“And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.
And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.
And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.”
We begin this early text with the magnificent words “God said”! He need not do anything at all, but speak. Indeed, strictly, He need not even speak, such is His power. Yet, we are told that ‘God said’, ′amar. As I have just documented, this need not be in actual words. One of the meanings is ‘to say in the heart’, a mere thought. However, it can also mean to be said or to be called, a concept we find in the last days, when there will be a trumpet sound and a loud shout. Either way, God created simply from His thought, possibly using actual utterances, though these would not be necessary.
“…let there be light”, ′owr. Let us be clear about what this is truly saying. It says that light did not exist, and now it did, by God’s command. Note also that this light was made BEFORE God created the sun, moon and stars! Thus, light does not rely on these light-makers and reflectors, but only on God’s command. This is an amazing concept, and one that we cannot possibly understand. (God later made the sun, etc., part of the mechanism providing light and warmth, but, at first, light was a direct product of God’s word, and did not rely on anything created for its existence).
The word can mean the light made by luminaries such as the sun, etc., or the light of day (amongst other things). But, as nothing else had been made and what was made, was made in utter darkness, this light is a mysterious entity on its own, existing with no source of light other than God’s command!
The root, ′owr, means ‘to be light’, which again speaks only of its existence and does not necessarily refer to a source. This should amaze and stun Christians, who should not be afraid to teach this fact, regardless of what scientists may say. (Note also that this same concept appears at the end of scripture, in Revelation 22:5, where, again, light exists without the sun, and is given simply by the presence of God.).
After this stupendous act of creation, God ‘saw’ what He had made, ra′ah. Again, God need not have physically looked at His creation. The word also means to inspect, or to observe. I would suggest that God just observed, for He already knew that everything He makes is perfect. And what He had brought into existence, the light, was ‘good’, towb… pleasant, agreeable, excellent and very pleasing.
Once again, we must be in awe, for this same self-existing light was then divided up into sections of light and dark, which were named as night and day. He ‘divided’ the light, badal, or, set it apart from the dark. If we follow the wording logically, then, there was absolute blackness and God then introduced light without any source other than His word. God then punctuated the light and allowed the blackness to exist at the same time. These two were then formulated into what we now know as night and day. Note again – there are still no sources of night and day, other than God’s word!
God then gave these two entities names through a proclamation, qara′ (called). When first made, the blackness and the light were, essentially, timeless. However, almost instantly, God gave them names that made them measures of time. Light was called ‘Day’, yowm. That is, a simple day as we now know it. In other contexts ‘day’ can also mean a year or some other time period. In this text we know that it here means a literal 24 hour period, because it is named alongside ‘night’, which qualifies the meaning.
Without that second name, it could very well have meant a period of time. This act of naming, in fact, denies evolutionists a mainstay – that each ‘day’ mentioned in creation was actually a very long period of time. The very context of all these verses rejects such an idea.
‘Day’, then, here means ‘as opposed to night’, or ‘as defined by evening and morning’, or ‘a 24 hour period’. The Hebrew word itself denotes an ordinary solar day. And, when this word is used with a qualifying or modifying number (358 times in the Old Testament), it always means a literal day.
The phrase ‘evening and morning’ is found 38 times in the Old Testament, and in every case it means an ordinary day. In every instance the words are qualified by a modifying number, making them literal days… so why try to make Genesis 1 say anything different? The answer to this is... straightforward unbelief.
God could have made everything instantly, complete. Yet, He wanted men to use the six day pattern followed by a day of rest, for their own daily living (see Exodus 20:11). This is why we have a seven day week. It is also why Christians should oppose any move to run days into each other without division. The seventh day concept is vital to our well-being, as well as the foundation of rest (followed by worship). (Note: We do not know what the first day was in terms of a name, for days in ancient times were numbered, not named. Therefore, those who make the ‘seventh day’ Saturday, do so out of conjecture).
The alternative to this - each ‘day’ being millions of years - is absurd in this context. Did God make everything in six periods of millions of years and then tell us to rest for a million years? Of course not! Such is absurd.
The word yowm or yom is based on an unused root, meaning hot. So, it is possible that heat accompanied the first and subsequent days – again without the sun. The darkness He called ‘Night’, layil, which means ‘as opposed to day’, again making plain that we are referring to literal 24 hour periods. Then, the next phrase clinches the literal 24 hour meaning: “And the evening and the morning were the first day”. Evening, `ereb, literally means sunset or evening/night, and its root, `arab supports this meaning. There is no way out for evolutionists, for this meaning is literal and plain. God made day and night in anticipation of creating the sun and moon!
‘Morning’, boqer, means break of day, the end of night, the coming of daylight, ‘next day’ – all of which are literal. The evening and the morning were the ‘first’ day. The word ‘first’ is the numeral, ′echad, one. Again, a very clear fact, that the first day was a literal day. Christians who are afraid to accept this tend to believe in so-called Theistic Evolution, saying that God started it off and then left it to ‘nature’!! What an absurdity! What a spineless notion!
God said He created days as literal 24 hour periods – so why not believe it? If you do not, do you believe in God at all? I doubt it very much, for if you truly believed, you would accept the Genesis account of Creation, as it stands, rather than the spoof ‘theory’ of evolution. You will be unable to prove that God did this – but, by the same token, evolutionists cannot disprove it, either! So, why think it is ‘intellectual suicide’ to believe God and not men? After all, just as evolutionists cannot disprove Creation, nor can they prove their own hypothesis – evolution!
Before going any farther in this study just do this one thing – accept what you have just read, as it is written in scripture. If you had never heard of evolution, there is no way you would read the text as meaning anything other than literal 24 hour days!
Only unbelief makes men think otherwise, for there is nothing in science to support evolution or ‘days’ of millions of years. If you cannot accept these things as fact, then it is pointless for you to continue with the study, for it all refers to literal days. The choice is yours – believe God, or believe men!
“And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.
And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so.
And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day.”
God then commanded the second (literal) day to be created. Once He had made the light and the dark (the first day), God then produced something just as remarkable – substance that separated sky from water.
Let there be a firmament… raqiya` … expanse, the ‘vault of heaven’ that supports water above. Ancient Hebrews thought that this space between sky and earth was ‘solid’. Today we know it as sky and atmosphere. This is confirmed by the root, raqa`, meaning a ‘spreading (of clouds)’, or, ‘to overlay’. (However, in verse 14, we find that this word also refers to the space immediately outside the atmosphere).
The text, then, tells us that there was a huge ball of water-covered earth, and then God put in a separating space of atmosphere, thus creating a ball and an outer ring of water, with air in between. The phrase ‘in the midst’, tavek, meaning in the middle, or among, or between, confirms this interpretation. The unused root means ‘to sever’, which is another indication.
That water was separated from water is found in the words ‘of the waters’, and the waters were divided from the waters, badal… to divide into parts. God, then, made a ball of water and then divided it up into two portions of water, one above our heads and one below. And it was all held in place by God’s power and word (not by gravity) – “it was so”, ken, ‘just so’, correct, true! It was established, made stable, made secure, kuwm.
The resultant space between the two portions of waters, God named heaven, shamayim. This word can mean either God’s abode, or the sky with its atmosphere. It can also mean where the stars are (in this case, where they would later be).
This was all made on the second day, the word ‘second’ being sheniy – an ordinal number, meaning just what it says – second (as in two and as in ‘second time’ or ‘do again’, shanah). We can see that these are definitely literal 24 hour days!
“And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so.
And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that it was good.”
The logical mind of God amazes me! First there was darkness and light, which He made into day and night, and into literal 24 hour periods of time that would govern the activities of men. Then, He made water separate from water, so that there was a space in which Man could later breathe and move. Now, He creates dry land on which men could live! Remember that at this time, outer space did not exist. Nor did the sun, moon, or stars.
God issued another command, that the waters under the sky, the ball of liquid, should be gathered into one place. ‘Under’ is tachath, and it means ‘the under-part’ or beneath. So, the ball of water was to be divided up again and ‘gathered together’, qavah, to collect or bind together. We can assume from this that the first land and first sea were each one mass. This is reasonable speculation, for we are told that the waters were gathered into ‘one place’… ’one’ being the number one, ′echad, and ‘place’ being maqowm, meaning a region or quarter or room. That is, a place designated (from quwm, to be fixed).
As soon as this was done, the dry land appeared, yabbashah – dry land or ground. The root is yabesh, which suggests that the land dried out or was without moisture. This also suggests that the land was already under the water, but again this is ‘intelligent’ speculation.
The word ‘appear’, ra′ah, does not give us further clues. It means in this text to present itself or to be visible, and does not particularly tell us that the land was already present. Really, it does not matter – the main fact is that God caused the land to appear.
Today we know that this land mass is above water, but also continues below water, to form a large round-ish globe. In much later texts, when the great Flood occurs, we also find that water was kept in massive caverns underneath the land below the sea. The caverns burst open and sent the water to join the sea and the water falling from the sky. And it was so!
God then named this dry land Earth, ′erets. It was now ready to be further interpreted as a place for inhabitants, a country or tribal territory, the dry surface of the world. The waters, which existed before the dry land, were named as Seas, yam, meaning all seas (from an unused root meaning to roar – the sound of the sea when moving and breaking on land, thus possibly denoting the future creation of winds, etc.). Again, God observed what He had made, and it was perfect.
“And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so.
And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good.
And the evening and the morning were the third day.”
God now starts to make the earth ready for Man. At this time, people are being accused by socialism (through ‘environmentalists’) of ruining the earth, of killing animals for food, etc. But, the earth, and everything in it, are for Man’s use! Yes, we often make stupid mistakes, and even deliberate errors, but this cannot change the fact that the earth and all that is in it, is for the use of mankind... whichever way he wishes to do so. (See my book critical of the ‘Green Bible’).
Once again, ‘God said’ and something was created. This time it was grass, deshe′, meaning new grass, or vegetation. Thus, the word is either another Hebraic summary of all vegetation, or it simply refers to grass. You will note that God said “Let the earth bring forth… grass”. That is, the earth was commanded to produce this new growth. This is emphasised by the root for ‘grass’ (and the words ‘bring forth’ – the same word), dasha, which means to sprout or to cause to shoot forth. This is important, for it shows us that the earth was given the task of giving us the first vegetation, and this implies that the seed for further growth was placed in the earth by God. In this way, God installed the mechanism by which vegetation would grow in the future.
God placed herb-yielding seed in the ground… the`eseb or ‘herb’, simply meaning green plants. The seed, zera`, refers to offspring, sowing, seed, posterity, and its root, zara`, reinforces the fact that God created the ability to reproduce in every plant on earth. This offends evolutionists, but it is what scripture says. God created reproduction.
Let us get this straight – God created plants out of nothing, and He included in their creation the mechanism for reproducing. Thus, the first of everything was created without ‘history’ and everything that sprang forth from what was initially created from nothing (plants, animals, men) then had the ability to reproduce its own kind, which was inbuilt.
God then differentiates vegetation and fruit, by creating the ‘fruit tree’. Fruit (here standing for all its variances), p@riy, means produce of the ground, offspring and, simply, ‘fruit’. That this is the meaning – fruit – is found in the root word, parah. Whereas grass or herbs grow from the ground, fruit is distinguished as being grown on trees, `ets. And it literally means trees (or derivatives, such as wood, plank, stalk, stick, etc).
The word for ‘yielding’ in this text is different from the previous one. It is `asah, meaning to fashion or accomplish, or to make, to bring about. That is, the tree was imbued with the ability to produce more fruit from its own stock after it was initially created. The text tells us that this enabled the tree to yield fruit “after his kind”, miyn, meaning ‘species’ and that this seed was ‘in itself’. Though the word miyn is usually applied to animals, it is here used for fruit trees. It can also be used to refer to the previous vegetations, for the word ‘seed’ implies the same boundaries of species. It was done and, at the end of the third literal day, God saw that it was excellent.
“And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years:
And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so.
And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also.
And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth,
And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good.
And the evening and the morning were the fourth day.”
In verse 14 we come to the creation of the sun and the moon. As with the other things, God firstly created the substances, and then He gave these created things the power to deliver the mechanical means of light… after He created light itself, which operated without mechanical means, relying only on God’s word for existence.
God commanded “Let there be lights”. These lights were in the ‘firmament’ – inner or closest space. The word lights, ma′owr, merely indicates that they were things that reflected light, e.g. ‘to be illuminated’, ′owr. (Though the word means to give light, mechanically, after creation of the original orbs).
Their purpose was to establish night and day, to distinguish the two states. But, they were created for much more than that. They were also to act as signs for the seasons, days and years. As ‘signs’ they were ′owth, signals, or banners, tokens, or even proof, that measured seasons and days and years were given to mankind for their use. The word is from an older one meaning to appear.
Thus, they would appear regularly, so that the earth had order and fairly predictable actions. That these were set by God is found in the word ‘seasons’, mow`ed, meaning an appointed time, and for sacred seasons or feasts, signals that one period was complete and another was starting, e.g. winter to spring. It is to be noted that this regularity has been deteriorating over the past few decades (yet, this is cyclical).
The ‘days’ in this verse are yowm, and mean literal 24 hour days. This is emphasised by the addition of the plural word ‘years’, shaneh, which is used separately from ‘days’. The actual length of a year is not given in this text, but means a division or measure of time, a lifetime, or as an indication of age. The whole phrase… seasons, days and years, suggests fixed and literal periods, as we know them today. To try to make these periods into billions of years is a literary absurdity, making any such belief childish.
These lights were for the use of men, “to give light upon the earth”. That they also give light to other planets is not our concern, but this text suggests that there are no more inhabited planets. Their purpose was to light, ′owr, the earth. Again, the use of this word is literal – speaking of actual daylight for an ordinary 24 hour day. And that was what God did by His word.
Though God made many ‘lights’ such as stars, He particularly made two ‘great’ lights for earth’s use. They were ‘great’ or large, gadowl, and ‘important’, gadal. The bigger of the two lights was to ‘rule’ the day, in the sense that this was its dominion, memshalah. The term actually means that this greater light was to ‘rule’ the light.
Thus, following the same process, God firstly created the two great lights, and then He gave them the ability to produce light thereafter (though, from what we read in this chapter, light itself is a principle acting on God’s word, rather than a re-creation of the great lights. That is, light can exist without a physical mechanism to produce it. Why is this? Possibly, to show human beings that they can theorise as much as they wish, but it is God Who has the power. Men will accept that the sun produces gases that give us light, but they would not accept that God is behind it all, and that light can exist without any kind of mechanical source!).
The ‘lesser’ light is smaller in size, though still great, qatan, and its purpose is to ‘rule’ the night. One of the meanings of the word qatan is ‘insignificant’. Perhaps this is part of the meaning, for, whilst the sun was created to reproduce ‘after its own kind’ (e.g. light), the moon only reflects the sun’s light and does not make light of its own. The stars also reflect light and do not make it (except when they explode, but this is a temporary activity).
The stars are kowkab, meaning rolling or blazing. As to the latter meaning, this is what stars appear to do – they seem to ‘blaze’. As to the first meaning, this is interesting because scientists say that stars are moving away from their original point (wherever that was)… rolling. It is possible, then, that God created the stars to move. Thus, their present movement is not the result of a ‘big-bang’ or any other catastrophic activity, but is the direct result of God’s plan. The word for star can also mean ‘numerous progeny’ of God... which they certainly are!
It seems to me, from the structure of the text, that the creating of the stars is not considered to be of much importance compared to the creation of the earth. So, why do men spend time, energy and vast sums of money, trying to reach them?
The sole purpose of all these myriad of bodies is to light the earth. Does this not suggest to you that there are no other populated planets? Even if water is found on Mars, this does not infer that life exists, or ever did… or that it matters. God, then, set them in place, nathan – employed them for that reason, dedicated them to their purpose, assigned them to their task.
You will notice that, at this juncture, God does not name the two great lights as the sun and the moon. Even so, it is obvious that this is what they were… and it was good! That was the fourth (literal) day.
“And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven.
And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good.
And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth.
And the evening and the morning were the fifth day.”
On the fifth day, God commanded that the waters be filled with animated life. There was no ‘primordial soup’. There were no ‘lower order’ of animals’ that would one day (somehow) grow into something else and finally become Man. God made every creature complete, and of its own kind. And those alive today are the same as the day they were created.
The word ‘waters’, mayim, though the plural of a primitive noun, is used in a singular sense. Thus, the command applies to all kinds of waters. We do not know for sure if there was both salt and fresh water for these animals to live in, but logic suggests that they both existed, for a fresh water fish cannot live in salt water, etc. And one species cannot evolve into another. Therefore, each was created for its own habitat.
The words ‘bring forth’, sharats, is brimming-over with the promise of abundance. It means ‘to teem’, to swarm, or to multiply. In the beginning, then, before the advent of modern greed and folly, the waters were filled with life, and capable of reproducing more.
The waters were filled with sherets (which is a word directly based on sharats), meaning ‘teeming things’ or animals. Other meanings include quadrupeds, small reptiles and insects. However, as this word is based on another word meaning teeming waters, we may safely state that the more general meaning of sea-animals is meant, though specific names are not here given. Nor need they be given, for common-sense must prevail, as well as reasonable interpretation!
These ‘moving creatures’ have ‘life’, chay. This can also mean the reviving of springtime – so it does not apply in this case. It can mean simply living or alive… which does apply. It can mean the green of vegetation (e.g. fresh); thus, might possibly apply, as the sea contains many species of plants. It can refer to the ‘lively’ aspect of mankind, but this is not pertinent. It can mean ‘relatives’, which is another non-useable meaning. More directly, it can mean a living animal, or just life itself, both of which apply to the text. This is found to be true in the root word chayah, meaning to have life and to sustain it (e.g. by reproduction).
We must remember, that, as with men, it is God Who gives life to creatures, and it is He Who sustains life. If God does not wish a person or animal to live, then it will not. This drives straight through the modern idea that medicine or science can keep this or that person, animal, alive. If a machine or medicine or surgery maintains life, it is not because of the advances in these fields – it is because God has allowed that person or animal to continue to breathe.
The machine, etc., is only a means and does not have the power to extend life. When men say that what they do extends life, they are deluded. No man or thing can extend life beyond the span decided by God! God may allow a machine or other means to bring relief or to be used as a means – but life cannot be extended. To claim such a thing, men are actually saying that they can override the plan of God, and their argument is a way of rejecting God’s absolute sovereignty.
Always bear in mind a simple but potent fact: that all things must line up with what God says – it is not the other way around. No matter how modern or how technical or how scientific a thing is, it is either consistent with God’s word or ensuing principle, or it is not. If it is not, then it is worthless and a lie. A machine can do marvellous things, but it is just a machine, made from created matter and using the brain-power of created men and women. It has no power of its own, but is imbued with ability by God, through the activities of men. If men interpret its existence as being self-contained, then this is a lie. If they claim that it is their own intellect that produces results, then they lie and are deluded. Can you see what I am saying?
God also created the “fowl that may fly above the earth”. Again, this is proof (for Christians at least) that evolution (re. the change of one species into another) does not exist. The ‘fowl’, are `owph, ‘flying creatures’, birds, and winged insects. The word is based on their ability to move in the air, `uwph – fly about, hover, light upon (after flying). Thus, a fish did not ‘somehow’ crawl onto land and evolve into a bird. Both types of creatures were distinct from the beginning, and had within their genes the power to reproduce ‘after their kind’ – within the bounds of their own species.
These creatures flew in the ‘open (the face) firmament’ of the ‘heavens’. That is, in this text, the skies and atmosphere. Some could fly very high, and others remained close to the earth (insects), but they all remained in what we know of as the sky.
With delight, the text adds a specific note: “God created great whales”. The whales, tanniyn, were also known as sea-serpents, dragons, or sea (or river) monsters. The word can also refer to land-based jackals, or to venomous land snakes, but obviously this cannot apply to this text. From this, we see that the name ‘whale’ was a generic term, not a specific name. It was used to speak of any sea animal that was very big or long (from an unused root of tan), as the word ‘great’, gadowl, tells us. In the beginning, then, the ‘great whales’ were any very large or long creatures of either the sea or rivers, including massive sea dinosaurs.
We should note as an aside that the massive creatures that men wrongly call ‘prehistoric’, are included in this term, whether they were in the sea or on the land. Sadly, today, we only see the remnant of a water-life that was once teeming with every sort of creature, from miniscule to absolutely massive. Those creatures we now see, such as whales and giant squid, are but a sample of what once lived in the deep… and that may still live there, as we continue to discover species not known to modern men. It would not surprise me if there are still dinosaurs still living in remote areas or in the waters.
We should also note that there can be no such creature as ‘lower order’ – each species was made as it is now, for a particular purpose. It is not higher or lower on a mythical ‘scale’, for each has been created to be that way.
God emphasises in verse 21 that He created everything ‘after their own kind’. This is very important. Not one creature has ‘evolved’ from anything else. Creatures can mutate, but each mutation is already part of its created, genetic possibilities. None can mutate beyond their own species. That was God’s plan – and He saw it to be good!
We also see, from verse 22, that the ability to reproduce is NOT a given factor inherent within a species. Rather, it is the result of being ‘blessed’ by God, barak; that is, God gave them a special permission to reproduce as a gift. The word also means to ‘cause to kneel’, suggesting that the gift was not without its conditions. Just as God’s love is never unconditional, so this gift of reproduction is conditional: it is given with the idea of praising God for its enaction and continuance. All creatures were commanded to be ‘fruitful’, parah (to bear fruit), and to ‘multiply’, rabah (become many, to increase).
When applying this principle to mankind, then, reproduction is a gift of God, and we must thank God for it, for He is the Creator of life. Inherently, He can also withhold reproduction if He so wishes. It means that whilst in general mankind can expect to reproduce, having a baby is not a ‘right’, but a privilege. Again, we are faced with God’s absolute sovereignty.
“And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so.
And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good.”
God now repeats the truth, that everything was created and given the delegated power to multiply, but only after its own kind. This included the ‘cattle’, a word diminished in our own day, but originally included b@hemah or wild beasts, domestic animals and all animals. The ‘creeping thing’, remes, included every moving organism on the earth and in the sea. It can also include ‘gliding things’ such as seals, etc., being further defined as ‘moving lightly’, ramas, whether on all fours or using water as a vehicle of movement. The ‘beast of the earth’ is simply a reference to anything that is living, chay. And it was so; each was its own defined species.
Verse 25 also makes a point of this fact: that every living thing that was created, was made as a distinct species, giving it a boundary it could not cross. It does not matter if the only differentiation is a single gene – it is enough to make one species distinct from every other one. Do not listen to those who glorify the supposed ‘nearness’ of Man to any animal – it is a delusion. Man is unique, as are animals. Each species is different and no similarity of genetic structure can cross the boundary between species. A man is a man, a chimpanzee is still a chimpanzee... not matter how clever it seems or what it can make with its hands! This is how God made everything, and He found it to be good!
“And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.”
Then comes the crown of creation, the making of mankind. God said, “Let us make man in our image”. In these phrases we have a curious yet profound meaning, as the singular becomes plural, and the plural becomes singular.
God said, let US fashion Man in OUR image. You will remember that the word ‘God’ is plural. This text confirms the plural nature of God. ‘Image’ is tselem, meaning likeness or resemblance. Man was made, then, to resemble God. For Christians this means His triune likeness. We can deduce that this cannot mean total likeness, for a created being cannot, by definition, be a Creator or eternal, and God has many attributes not found in man.
The meaning must therefore be restricted to aspects of God. That is, Man cannot be God, but can reflect certain of His attributes. This is a suitable interpretation, for it is based on what we know about God from His word. Though God only created one man at the start, His plan was to include all men, as the word ‘them’ implies. Note, then, that the words ‘man’ and ‘them’ tell us that God is referring to all of mankind, not just Adam or Eve.
(Hebrew scholars have got it right here. They say that Man “is the artifact of God, fashioned purposefully out of two diverse elements: his body is of the earth, but it is animated by the divine breath of life.”; “he is a multi-faceted unitary being – nephesh hayyah”, a ‘living person’. Note: I am unable to reproduce the vowel under the ‘h’. Hebrew study also emphasises that all men and women can be traced back to just the two first human beings. We are all earthly brethren).
The Man created would have total rule over all of the earth, including its animals and plants. Modern talk of ‘mother earth’ and ‘nature’, as though they existed separate from God, are nonsense. As is talk of mankind stepping back from ruling and using the earth for his own ends. It is literally his God-given right to rule and use everything in and on the earth. (That men wish to misuse or abuse, is a separate issue). Do not be swayed by environmentalists!
The term ‘to rule’, radah, includes the idea of subjugation, so, men can make everything on earth subject to his will. It means to dominate or even to ‘tread down’. Again, by God’s command, this crosses the lines set by animal-rights activists and even those who fight to ‘save’ things such as forests and wild lands. (To repeat – misuse and abuse are not the issue in this text. These have more to do with fallen man and his propensity for stupidity and sin, both of which are not a feature in God’s original gift).
So, God created Man. In this text ‘man’ is ′adam. This is a generic word referring to all of mankind, and does not specifically refer to Adam the first man. Again, because of the predominance of bad science and unbelief, we must state that the word means ‘human being’ (as distinct from animals). It can also mean Adam the first man, but not in this text. Here we see that the word ‘our’ becomes ‘his’ (as in ‘our image’ and ‘his image’). This switch of words is deliberate and accurately describes God as the Only God (his) and yet as a God of three persons (our).
Men, then, were created exactly as we see him today. He was perfect and he was complete. He did not evolve and did not need to. If anything, mankind has degenerated since Adam; hence our various ills and deformities and failing strength. That is why, despite their intention to reject God, scientists lamely say of archaeological bone finds, “This skull is hardly any different from modern ones”, etc. This should cause a smile, for it simply means, “There are no differences”. And even if differences are found, they prove nothing, except that one skull or bone, or part of one, is showing the same differences that exist in every single human being who has ever lived! The scientist is compelled to say “hardly any” so that he does not dismiss evolution altogether, even though there are no proofs for his absurd theory!
Though I say Man today is what he has always been, I have omitted one obvious difference – Adam and Eve were created without a ‘belly button’ or navel! This was because they were unique, and were not born as are the rest of mankind. They were made fully formed and adult.
For the sake of completeness, the word ′adam later was applied to a city in Jordan. This cannot be used in this case because there were no cities or regions (except for Eden) at this time. I have said this to show that interpretation is a matter of context, not of personal whim or preferred theology. Each word is modified or qualified by the context.
This generic name for mankind is interesting, because its root word (same spelling) tells us the original skin colour of men and women! It means ‘ruddy’ or red. The first people, then, were not dark or white, but had skin that was ‘ruddy’ or robustly healthy, possibly also meaning that Adam and Eve were red-heads, but, more likely, that their skin was a light mahogany colour, with dark hair.
In early scripture ‘mankind’ or ‘men’ refers to both men and women, though once Adam was created, ‘man’ tended to refer only to males. “Male and female created he them.” Male is zakar – human males, or animal males, but in this text it only speaks of human beings (for that is the context). Interestingly, the root word (same spelling) includes the notion of ‘a memorial’. Was Man made as a memorial to the living God?
‘Female’ is n@qebah or woman, female child (human or animal). It seems – and this is only my own view – that the root word, naqab, gives a clue, even in this early text, about the sexual difference between a man and a woman, for it means to pierce, perforate, or ‘bore’. We know, from obvious observation, that this is certainly one way to describe it, but I would repeat that this is only a view.
The main note for modern humankind, is that men and women were created to be different and separate. Men and women today, who mutilate their own bodies in order to be the other sex, are deceived. Their changes can only be superficial, and they are certainly not godly; indeed, they are wicked and satanic. That is why such changes require intensive and gross deformation of the body, and the inclusion of ‘plastic parts’. (This does not apply to those genuine - but very rare – cases of unsure sexual identification at birth).
“And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.
And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.
And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so.
And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.”
As He did with everything else, God ‘blessed’ them with the gift of reproduction. He gave mankind the same command, to produce offspring. They were to ‘replenish’ the earth, male′ - fill it with other humans, through birth. God created the first humans as fully-formed adults. After this initial creation, men and women were to procreate, for the ‘seed’ was within them to produce ‘after their kind’. We may refer to this as ‘designated’ or secondary creation, an ability not inherent in the human being, but given as a gift. Man was, then, a channel of God’s creational power. Men do not have this power for their own sakes, or in their own authority.
You should note an interesting variance here. Whereas God put the ability to reproduce in animals and plants, etc., He actually told Adam and Eve to reproduce… God ‘said’, ′amar, uttered, to command, to be told. This is quite profound, for it tells us a number of things: that God spoke to mankind in a language they understood; that they were fully-formed linguistically as well as physiologically (and so did not ‘develop’ from grunts to language!); that God intended the command to be used discretionally – a choice of men and women. This is important when it comes to morality, for men and women were not created to spawn children whenever they wished, only within certain circumstances – marriage (the definition of which is, again, not part of this current study, but is man to woman). There is, then, no ‘primitive urge’ to procreate – an excuse used by those who disregard morality and prefer promiscuity.
Adam and Eve (though not named at this point) were told also to ’subdue’ the whole earth, kabash, to ‘keep it under’, to make it subservient, or even to force it. We see from this that Man is the major pivot of the earth, not the earth itself, or its animals and plants. All things on earth were made subject to mankind (and only later subject to Satan). Mankind could rule the entire earth and use it as he wished. It is only increasing godlessness that introduced the idea of gratuitous, foolish use, and a desire to destroy (which comes from Satan).
God then spoke clearly to the two newly-created humans: Behold! Hinneh – see! (A longer version of hen – lo! I have bestowed upon you, or entrusted to you, everything, kol. What constituted ‘everything’ is then described as everything created – herbs and plants, trees and their fruit. These, said God, will be your ‘meat’.
Meat today means animal flesh, but the word in this text is broader: ′oklah, meaning ‘food’ or the object of devouring. This is often the case in scripture; ‘meat’ means anything that is food. We cannot suppose from this, that animal flesh is barred, or that it was not eaten. Nor can we say that it was commanded. We are just told that Adam and Eve were commanded to eat plants and fruit for food. That animals and men were ‘created’ to be vegetarians, is just supposition.
God also told Adam end Eve that He gave herbs and plants to the animals to eat. Thus, mankind ate the same things as the animals. This does not imply that animals and humans are the same, only that they ate the same things. It was God’s command (but, as I have intimated, this does not automatically mean man could not eat animals).
To conclude this brief study of Genesis 1, we come to verse 31. There, we find that God surveyed everything He had created, and saw that it was ‘very good’, m@`od - exceedingly good! This was the end of the sixth literal day.
Readers should now go back to scripture and see for themselves what creation meant. I believe that I have given an honest interpretation, and you must conclude for yourselves if it is scriptural. You will note certain themes emerge in this chapter:
- That God is more than one person; a minimum of two.
- That the principle of life exists externally to birth and death.
- That the light is not primarily the product of the sun, but is a principle that exists because God says so.
- That all things are created to be bound by their own genetic structures and plan and cannot change into other species.
- We also see that the male-female union is true to the created order of God.
- Mankind has control over all the earth and can do with it as he wishes.
- There are other lessons, but the above will suffice for now.
© January 2005 – Revised November 2013
Published on www.christiandoctrine.com
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