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Genesis 1c

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Genesis 1:14-16…Then God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night, and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days and years; 15 and let them be for lights in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth.” And it was so. 16 And God made the two great lights, the greater light to govern the day, and the lesser light to govern the night; He made the stars also.

Commentary

            The first three days of God’s good creation entailed the giving of light, creating the atmosphere & the “waters above,” and the formation of dry ground with seed producing plants, trees, & vegetation. God’s work on day four gives substance to the disembodied light of day one.

            Even though God had already created light on day one, on day four He creates the sun, moon, and stars. Day one correlates with day four (day two w/day five; day three w/day six), as this is God’s finishing work. In the latter three days of creation God is filling up the void from the first three days of creation. When God created light on day one, it was an ethereal light that day four completed. The light that shone prior to the sun was God Himself, much like the light that will shine eternally without the sun in Revelation 21:23. God also created the moon that shines by night. Though the moon doesn’t have any life-giving light in itself, it does reflect the light from the sun and is thus the light that governs the night. The moon also is responsible for determining the ocean tides through its gravitational pull. The high tides of the oceans align with the moon on both sides of the earth. The water levels of the ocean are determined by the bulges of the earth both toward and away from the moon. These bulges move across the face of the earth while it rotates on its axis, and this accounts for the two high and low tides of the oceans each day. The balance of the earth’s ecosystems depend largely on these ocean tides. Isn’t it amazing how our little lifeless moon 225,000 miles away is vital for life as we know it?

            The sun is the light that “governs” (or “rules”) the day. In ancient Babylon (Iraq) the sun and moon were believed to be gods because they governed the universe. Nothing like that is implied here, for their rule is only figurative in that their light oversees the earth, governing its transformation from day to night. The sun is 93 million miles away from the earth, but it’s light takes approximately 9 minutes to reach the earth (what you see at 8 a.m. is light that left at 7:51 a.m.). Dark spots on the sun that appear from time to time tend to cause dramatic changes like electrical storms on the earth. At the same time, the sun maintains a miraculous balance that continues to sustain life on the earth. Life as we know it would end if the sun’s brightness or temperature fluctuated ever so slightly in either direction.

            Notice the last sentence in verse 16: “He made the stars also.” It’s as if God wanted nothing left to chance about who created them. Those who worship the stars or attempt to see the future through them in horoscopes and the like show their contempt for the Maker of those stars.

Food for Thought

            The twenty-four hour day is determined by the earth’s spin on its axis. The year is determined by the earth’s revolution around the sun. Our months are determined by the moon’s orbit around the earth. So where do we come up with a 7-day week? It’s in the creation week by our Lord, and it is a universal week around the globe. When God created the universe it actually governed the way humans define time. The day is the shortest measure of time governed by the heavenly bodies. The year is the longest period of time governed by the same. All of which reflect day four of God’s creation week when He created the sun, moon, and stars. Look out at them today, and see them as creations of God, not products of chance. There’s no beauty in that.

Genesis 1:17-19… And God placed them in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth, 18 and to govern the day and the night, and to separate the light from the darkness; and God saw that it was good. 19 And there was evening and there was morning, a fourth day.

Commentary

            The “expanse” in verse six was clearly a reference to the atmosphere that was in the “midst” of the waters below and the waters above (transparent vapor canopy). Here in verse 17 the “expanse” is the place where the sun, moon, and stars dwell. We know that they don’t dwell in the atmosphere but in the heavens above the atmosphere. The “expanse” in this passage then, clearly deals with a different area of the sky than verse 6.

            After God created the sun, moon, and stars he “placed” them in the expanse. It’s as if God just set them in their respective spaces the same way a loving mother places her baby in its crib. God called them into existence and lovingly set them where He wanted them. He did this for three reasons. First, “to give light on the earth.” Now God was already shining light on the earth from the first day of creation. It was His first act on the first day. Light had been shining during the first three days just as though there was a sun already in place even though it had not yet been created. This is not impossible for God who creates waves of light energy because He Himself is the Prime Mover – the initial generator of all power. The only thing lacking from God’s initial light on day one was their governing power over the seasons, days, and years.

            The second reason God created the sun and moon in found in verse 18: “to govern the day and the night.” Though God had already divided the light from the darkness on day one, calling the light “good,” here on day four He creates these literal entities that will rule over the two. The sun rules over the day, and the moon is the light-reflecting governing body at night. And the final reason God created these two entities was “to separate the light from the darkness.” Once God created these light-givers He “saw that it was good.” He created them out of nothing, carefully set them in place with a specific job to perform, then He sat back, surveyed His creation, and called it “good.” When He was finished He called it a day – the fourth day.

            Some have postulated that since the stars are so far away (billions of light years) the fact that their light can be seen is evidence that the universe is billions of years old. In other words, it would take a given star’s light many billions of years to reach earth for humans to see, so the universe has to be at least that old. This kind of reasoning, though logical, is silly, and it hinders the creative work of God. When God created He created in 24-hour days as the text clearly teaches. The light from these stars was created in transit – a light that was already shining and able to be seen. Of course this is in keeping with all of God’s creations. They were all created with the appearance of age, and though many old-earth “scientists” will insist the earth is ancient, they severely limit not only God’s creative power but the clear reading of Genesis 1.

Food for Thought

            Psalm 33:6-9 says, “By the word of the lord were the heavens made, their starry host by the breath of his mouth. He gathers the waters of the sea into jars; he puts the deep into storehouses. Let all the earth fear the lord; let all the people of the world revere him. 9 For he spoke, and it came to be; he commanded, and it stood firm.”

            Clearly the Psalmist believed in God’s simple calling into existence of the universe. It was by His word alone that did it. Why then do so many adhere to the idea that it took billions of years to create it? In doing so God’s Word is relegated to myth and legend. Remember today that God is the Creator. He speaks, and it occurs. It is His creation and His gift for mankind.

Genesis 1:20-23… Then God said, "Let the waters teem with swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth in the open expanse of the heavens." 21 And God created the great sea monsters, and every living creature that moves, with which the waters swarmed after their kind, and every winged bird after its kind; and God saw that it was good. 22 And God blessed them, saying, "Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth." 23 And there was evening and there was morning, a fifth day.

Commentary

            Just as the creation of light on day one parallels the creation of the sun, moon, and stars on day four, day five corresponds with the second day of creation when God made the sky and the oceans. On day five He fills both of them with living creatures. First, the waters are said to “teem with swarms of living creatures.” The word for “teem” means to be innumerable, or to multiply. All of a sudden the ocean waters are filled with all kinds of life – too numerous to count. It all happened at God’s command. He called for it, and they appeared. God’s second act on day five is the filling of the sky with birds that fly around in the “expanse” – the atmosphere – he created. Again, it was through His word that they came into being. The sea creatures didn’t evolve into flying animals in the sky. Each one suddenly appeared at God’s command.

            Verse 21 is an explanation of exactly what God created. One of the creations in the ocean was “the great sea monsters.” This is translated as “great whales” in the KJV, and it would certainly include whales, sharks, and giant squid. However, the Hebrew term behind the English word is a generic word that most certainly includes large lizards commonly known as dragons or dinosaurs. Many of these creatures are now extinct, but the frequent use of the word in the Bible and the many references to them in ancient literature prevent us from dismissing these creatures as myths. The most logical explanation is that these references in ancient literature represent dinosaur memories that were handed down by tribal ancestors who had actually lived among them prior to their extinction. These “great sea monsters” then, includes not only large whales and the like but also the great amphibious lizards that clearly were part of the original creation.

            The other sea animals were also created on day five – “every living creature that moves, with which the waters swarmed after their kind.” All the fish, vertebrates, invertebrates, and reptiles were all created that day “after their kind.” There were no transitional forms that evolved into another. They were all created in one day after their kind at God’s command along with all the birds and animals that fill the sky. The birds didn’t mutate wings, they were created w/them. Now God has a planet that is not only formed but filled. God looks at it, and He calls it “good.”

            In verse 22 God “blesses” the animals in the sea and in the air. All animals are the objects of God’s care and concern (cf. Matt. 10:29). He commands them to be fruitful and multiply – the very same command He gives them after the great Flood in Genesis 9. He creates, gives His command to multiply, and calls it a “day.” There is evening and morning – day five.

Food for Thought

            If you’ve ever gone scuba diving or snorkeling you have seen the wonder of God’s creation in the seas. If you’ve ever looked up at the sky and noticed the birds chirping and flying through the air, you have seen the magnificence of God’s work. These creatures have God’s blessing, and they have obeyed the command of God to multiply and fill His created earth. The teachings of evolution throw away the wonder of God’s creation. The “God-created” doctrine in Genesis is replaced by chance in evolution – blessing replaced with indifference. Look at day five’s creation today, and be reminded of God’s omnipotence. Your problems will fade away.

Genesis 1:24-25… Then God said, "Let the earth bring forth living creatures after their kind: cattle and creeping things and beasts of the earth after their kind"; and it was so. 25 And God made the beasts of the earth after their kind, and the cattle after their kind, and everything that creeps on the ground after its kind; and God saw that it was good.

Commentary

             Verse 24 begins the sixth and final day of creation. This day corresponds with day three because it fills the dry land from that day. God comes back to the dry land in vv. 24-25 to give them life. After creating the birds of the air and the great sea creatures on day five, the only thing left to create are the lives that will roam the land. As usual God speaks, and it is done. Verse 24 says that after God called them into existence, the earth brought forth living creatures after their kind. The fact that the earth brought forth these “living creatures” does not mean that the animals evolved from the dirt or that the dirt has any inherent power to bring forth life. It simply means that their bodies were of the same substance as the earth, for that is where they were formed. When they died they would return to the dust of the earth. They are “living” meaning that they not only have souls (Hebrew nephesh) and are breathing, but that they are created as living. In other words, they didn’t evolve – they were created with age, immediately having life and breath.

            Whereas God “created” (Hebrew bara) the great sea monsters and all the birds of the air, He “made” (Hebrew asah) the beasts of the earth. Though the Hebrew words are synonymous, the fact that “every living soul” was created on day five means that the creation of land animals on day six simply concerned new types of organization of materials that were already there by God’s creation. All creations, whether made or created, involved the same basic biochemical structures and reproductive abilities common to all life.

            Exactly what was created is seen in the words “cattle…creeping things…beasts of the earth.” These three categories encompass all land creatures other than mankind. “Cattle” includes any living being that is not flying, swarming, or creeping and which is not human. It would include all domestic animals, livestock, and herds. The “beasts of the earth” would include all large mammals including lions, tigers, bears, elephants, and the land-dwelling dinosaurs that once roamed the earth. “Creeping things” would include all insects and probably the smaller reptiles along with mice and other rodents. Just like the other animals created along with the plants, these land-dwelling animals were created “after their kind.” The DNA for each “kind” does in fact allow for a wide array of individual variations within the kind, but it never goes beyond the structure of the kind itself. The fossil record categorically attests to this, and it is evolution’s greatest problem. God called these animals into being, “and it was so.”

            After God saw each animal after its kind, He pronounced, as He always does, that “it was good.” Now God had a planet that was full of life, full of potential, and awaiting the arrival of God’s greatest creation: mankind. The sixth day isn’t over yet, for God has not created man. It isn’t until all other life is created that man arrives on the scene.

Food for Thought

            Cows and sheep (cattle), apart from being multi-complex, were specifically designed for humans. Providing food, milk, and covering they are God’s gracious gift to humanity for survival. Ants (creeping things) serve a vital function in aerating the earth’s soil and pollinating other plants. Without ants the earth’s ecosystems would completely collapse. Put a drop of pond water under a microscope, and you’ll see life. God’s fingerprint is everywhere you look. He can fill the void in your life today no matter what you struggle with. He’s the Creator of the universe!

Day 1: Light

Day 2: Atmosphere & waters below

Day 3: Dry land

Day 4: Sun, moon, and stars

§ Sun: governs the day and radiates light

§ 865,000 miles in diameter (109 times that of the earth)

§ Volume is 1.3 times larger than the earth (bowling ball/poppy seed)

§ Surface temperature is 10 thousand degrees Fahrenheit; core is 27 million degrees

§ 93 million miles from earth (takes light 8 minutes to get here).

§ Dark spots produce electrical storms on earth and space (solar flares)

§ If temperature fluctuated one way or the other all life would cease.

§ Ultraviolet rays are vital to photosynthesis: plants/bacteria using energy to produce sugar, carbs, and other nutrients while in the process releasing oxygen.

§ Moon: 230,000 miles from the earth

§ Does a full orbit around the earth every 27.3 days (1.5 million miles each month)

§ Reflects the light of the sun

§ No atmosphere on moon – it’s why the sky is always black & able to be seen w/telescope.

§ Ocean tides are caused by moon’s gravitational pull.

§ The earth’s bulge toward and away from the moon cause two tides per day

§ Daily tides are vital to the earth’s ecosystems

§ Stars: some star clusters are 1 million times larger than our sun!

§ They display God’s glory (Ps. 19).

§ Like snowflakes and thumbprints no star looks the same – God’s creative wisdom

§ Alpha Centauri (3 stars in a cluster) is closet star to earth – 4.3 light years away.

§ Stars were created to illuminate the earth and for seasons (light created in transit)

§ Even Einstein (e=mc2) says that time is not a constant. Dilation in time allows light to travel vast distances instantly.

As signs… they regulate our lives, calendars, length of years, seasons, days, and nights.

§ Our entire lives are set by these “signs”: days, months, years, and the week to creation

§ The natural system of design required at least as much intelligence as the One who designed it

Day 5: Birds & fish

Day 6: Land creatures & man

§ Cows: have four stomachs

§ In the rumen chewed fiber stays for two days (ferments, and breaks into sugar); 50 gallons

§ In the reticulum (holds water that bypasses the rumen) liquid mixes w/enzymes and produces more fermentation.

§ The muscular movement of the rumen produces fermented balls that pass into the second chamber of enzyme saturated liquid.

§ The cow then regurgitates these tiny balls, chews them again, and swallows them again (chewing the cud).

§ In the third chamber (omasum) the cud is broken down even further.

§ In the fourth chamber (abomasum) a secretion of strong acid completes the process that goes through the cow to produce milk.

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