Creation, How God Made The World
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.
The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. Genesis 1:1-2
Genesis is the book of the beginnings, indeed that is what the word means. And it truly is an apt name. It contains a list of beginnings and origins. It begins with the beginning of the universe and in 50 chapters, it describes how God creates the earth; everything on it; the beginnings of human beings; of marriage; of sin and the separation of God from man and indeed the beginnings of God’s judgement on sin. Its also the beginnings of God’s redemptive plan and the beginnings of his means of carrying this out, that is the Nation of Israel.
In this series I intend to look at what the bible says specifically regarding regarding creation. This is one of the clearest and most clearly articulated doctrines in the bible, yet it seems to have attracted the most fierce attacks and disagreement from both the world and unfortunately within the church also.
First thing we need to know is that God created the world. This may so
und a bit redundant but given the popularity of atheistic evolution even within the church, it needs to be said. The world in which we live was created by God, by His means and for His purpose (Genesis 1:1). There is not the slightest hint in the text that evolution by means of natural selection had even the slightest roll in this process.
Next we see that God created the world ex nihilo. This means that He did not use existing materials to create the world, but rather created all matter out of nothing. This is unlike anything man has ever created, because man has always relied on preexisting materials in order to do anything.
The third thing we see about how God made the world is that, with the exception of man, He spoke everything into existence. Read Genesis 1:3; 1:6; 1:9; 1:11; 1:14; 1:20; and so on. Have you noticed a common phrase? It is the words “And God said ‘Let there Be’“. God spoke, and it happened. All of creation obeys He tells stars to exist, and to be in such and such a place, and they obey. The only two exceptions are Adam, which God formed out of the dust (Gen 2:7, and Eve, which He used one of Adam’s ribs (Gen 2:21-22).
And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day. Genesis 1:31
Fourthly God did a good job. This is no small understatement! But God even states as He completes each task, that He “saw and it was good“. The when all His creative works are done, He looks over everything and calls it very good. When God says something is good, that means that the work done, and the things created were good, and most particularly, unblemished. This is important because it is popular among some circles to say that Satan fell and sin began between verses 1 and 2 of Genesis 1. But this is impossible if each act of creation is ‘good’ thereafter, and especially if on day six, God looks at everything He has made (this must include Satan) and call it very good.
The next thing to know about the creation of the world is that it happened within a literal 24 hour week. Throughout Genesis 1, we have the ‘first day’, the ‘second day’ and so on, until the seventh day, when God rests from His creative works. A popular theory about these ‘days’ is that they are actually long periods of time. This is however utterly unjustifiable from the text. The text is written as an account, not as an allegory or similar type of literature. Genesis 1, describes an overview of the creation week and Genesis 2 & 3 give an in depth description of the events of Day 6 and the time period following. On top of that, using good biblical hermeneutics, a person would never read anything other that a literal 24 hour day. On top of this, there are some Hebrew grammar rules that come into play. The Hebrew word for day is “yom“. While this world could also mean a time period longer than 24 hours, in most instances where it occurs, it means 24 hours. But those grammar rules makes the case doubly sure. Basically what they are is that when yom is used in conjunction with a number or time word, it always means 24 hours. (For an in depth look at those rules, read this article by Answers in Genesis). We have the first day, a number, preceded by evening and morning a time phrase; ergo the word day in Genesis chapter 1 means a literal 24 hour day. In part 3 of this series I will examine in great depth why this is important.
So to sum up:
- God created the universe and the earth
- He created it out of nothing
- He created it out of nothing, and He formed everything except man by speaking.
- Everything that God made was good, the totality of it was very good.
- Finally God created the universe in a literal 6 day week and rested on the seventh day. After this week was completed, His creative process was complete.
The Doctrine Of Creation
Part 1: Creation, How God Made The World
Part 2: Creation, Why God Made The World
Part 5: Creation And The End Times