“Thus the heavens and the earth, and all the host of them, were finished. And on the seventh day God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made.” Genesis 2:1-3.
Chapter 2:1-3 is another one of those chapter breaks that were made prematurely; these first three verses are actually part of chapter 1 since they too belong to the re-creation week recorded in the first chapter.
The rest of chapter 2 falls under what is called the Law of Recurrence which is, in Scripture, a principle in which something like the creation week is sketched out, then as in here chapter 2:4-25 a number of important things are elaborated upon; such as the making of the Garden of Eden, certain geographical characteristics, and most importantly, the creation of man, woman and marriage.
“Then God said, ‘Let Us [Father, Son, and Holy Spirit] make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.’ So God created man in His own Image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” Genesis 1:26-27.
The pinnacle of all the creation from Genesis 1:3-27 is the creation of man, of whom God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness…” verse 26a.
I once asked a professor from a Bible college, if it was possible that God was speaking to the angels when He said, “Let Us make man in Our image”. His reply was, to paraphrase, absolutely not, these are words spoken within the Godhead. This view is also shared by the translators of the New King James Bible, because they have capitalized the words “Us, Our, and His own Image”, indicating deity.
“Then God said, ‘Let the earth bring forth the living creature according to its kind: cattle and creeping thing and beast of the earth, each according to its kind’; and it was so. And God made the beast of the earth according to its kind, cattle according to its kind, and everything that creeps on the earth according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.”
While it is stated here that God brought forth the beasts of the earth out of the earth, and it is clarified again in chapter 2 verse 19 that God formed them out of the ground, it does not mean that God did not create them from nothing.
That these were also created out of nothing is implied in the phrase “So God created great sea creatures and every living thing that moves…” Genesis 1:21a.
It is true that the water creatures (souls) came from the waters and the land creatures (souls) came from the earth; even man is formed from the dust of the ground. The thing that was created out of nothing was the soul of animals, whether in water or in land, and the soul and spirit of man, these came out of nothing when God called them into being. While men and animals have souls and are self-conscious, plants also have life but it is an unconscious-life, they do not have a soul.
“Then God said, ‘Let the waters abound with an abundance of living creatures [souls], and let birds fly above the earth across the face of the firmament [expanse] of the heavens.’ So God created [bara] great sea creatures and every living thing that moves, with which the waters abounded, according to their kind, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.” Genesis 1:20-21.
Over the last 24 hours of the re-creation we have seen the sun, moon and the stars appear in the skies, and before that, on day three, God separated the land from the seas and brought forth vegetation upon the earth. And though it is not stated, it can be assumed that the vegetation under the seas was also brought forth at this time. Continue reading →
“Then God said, ‘Let there be lights in the firmament of the heavens to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs and seasons, and for days and years; and let them be for lights in the firmament of the heavens to give light on the earth’; and it was so.” Genesis 1:14-15.
If we were standing on the earth at this time and it was dark, it would be dark indeed because up to this time the light of the sun, moon and stars could not penetrate the canopy enveloping the earth from far above.
However as we stand there God’s words ring out, “Let there be lights in the firmament of the heavens…” and in a moment we are surrounded by light from the moon and the stars. Suddenly the night is less unsettling.