Scripture documents God’s creation of the universe in Genesis 1. The scripture is written such that even young children can understand. However understanding the full revelation of the creation has enough complexity that even Biblical scholars can have a healthy debate on whether or not it is a literal account. Of course the world dismisses it consistent with their rejection of the rest of God’s holy scripture.
I am personally enjoying a deeper study of the debate for creation as literal or literary as I seek to know God more intimately. However, for now, I will attempt to simplify.
Much of Jesus’ teaching during His ministry on earth was using parables. Parables are stories that help us understand God’s character even though they are not specific historical events. Whether we read Genesis 1 as an historical event or parable, let us consider it as truth and seek to understand what God is telling us.
1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2 The earth was formless and empty, and darkness covered the deep waters. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface of the waters.
3 Then God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. 4 And God saw that the light was good. Then he separated the light from the darkness. 5 God called the light “day” and the darkness “night.”
And evening passed and morning came, marking the first day.
6 Then God said, “Let there be a space between the waters, to separate the waters of the heavens from the waters of the earth.” 7 And that is what happened. God made this space to separate the waters of the earth from the waters of the heavens. 8 God called the space “sky.”
And evening passed and morning came, marking the second day.
9 Then God said, “Let the waters beneath the sky flow together into one place, so dry ground may appear.” And that is what happened. 10 God called the dry ground “land” and the waters “seas.” And God saw that it was good. 11 Then God said, “Let the land sprout with vegetation—every sort of seed-bearing plant, and trees that grow seed-bearing fruit. These seeds will then produce the kinds of plants and trees from which they came.” And that is what happened. 12 The land produced vegetation—all sorts of seed-bearing plants, and trees with seed-bearing fruit. Their seeds produced plants and trees of the same kind. And God saw that it was good.
13 And evening passed and morning came, marking the third day.
14 Then God said, “Let lights appear in the sky to separate the day from the night. Let them be signs to mark the seasons, days, and years. 15 Let these lights in the sky shine down on the earth.” And that is what happened. 16 God made two great lights—the larger one to govern the day, and the smaller one to govern the night. He also made the stars. 17 God set these lights in the sky to light the earth, 18 to govern the day and night, and to separate the light from the darkness. And God saw that it was good.
19 And evening passed and morning came, marking the fourth day.
20 Then God said, “Let the waters swarm with fish and other life. Let the skies be filled with birds of every kind.” 21 So God created great sea creatures and every living thing that scurries and swarms in the water, and every sort of bird—each producing offspring of the same kind. And God saw that it was good. 22 Then God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful and multiply. Let the fish fill the seas, and let the birds multiply on the earth.”
23 And evening passed and morning came, marking the fifth day.
24 Then God said, “Let the earth produce every sort of animal, each producing offspring of the same kind—livestock, small animals that scurry along the ground, and wild animals.” And that is what happened. 25 God made all sorts of wild animals, livestock, and small animals, each able to produce offspring of the same kind. And God saw that it was good.
26 Then God said, “Let us make human beings in our image, to be like us. They will reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, the livestock, all the wild animals on the earth, and the small animals that scurry along the ground.”
27 So God created human beings in his own image.
In the image of God he created them;
male and female he created them.
28 Then God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth and govern it. Reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, and all the animals that scurry along the ground.”
29 Then God said, “Look! I have given you every seed-bearing plant throughout the earth and all the fruit trees for your food. 30 And I have given every green plant as food for all the wild animals, the birds in the sky, and the small animals that scurry along the ground—everything that has life.” And that is what happened.
31 Then God looked over all he had made, and he saw that it was very good!
And evening passed and morning came, marking the sixth day
There are several key points to highlight:
- God created the heavens and the earth. Overwhelming evidence (for those willing to study with open mind) proves creation as a series of random events is not possible. I will come back to this as a future topic for more discussion.
- God created man in His image. Man is given opportunity and responsibility to reign over the animals, fish, and birds, etc. Man is special amongst God’s creations.
- God created man as male and female, intending them to work together as a team to fill the earth and reign over it. Men and women are not intended to compete against one another and try to be the same. They are created to be different, to complement one another… or He would not have made two kinds.
- God took time to review and evaluate each step in creation. He was pleased with what He created. Nowhere is there an indication He felt disappointed in His creation. He was methodical and created exactly what He intended, without error.
- Creating the universe was not challenging for God. He is truly amazing to consider who He is and what He is capable of.
I encourage you to spend time reflecting on how these simple points should be reflected in your attitude toward God, man, woman, and the rest of God’s creation. How you view creation, the Creator, and the role of man sets a foundation for how you live your life.
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