“Then God blessed them”
II. Vs. 14-23 Signs of life
III. Vs. 24-31 Made in God’s image
In the creation account the focus is more “why” then “how”. With that said the established facts of science completely agree with the truths found in Genesis chapter 1. The other thing that is real obvious in this account is what Solomon observed in Eccl. 3:1 “There is a time for everything, a season for every activity under heaven.” God chose to create in stages or days, when He could of clearly have chosen to create everything in one “Word” and everything that He created function just as He planned.
II. Vs. 14-23 Signs of life
Vs. 14-19 These verses present a difficulty because we have already read in verse 3 that God created light. The word in verse 3 is a different word then the word “lights” found here in this verse. There it describes “light” in all its forms as energy here it describes what was visible from the earth. The how is not answered but we are given a three-fold reason as to why:
Vs. 14, 16, and 17 To give light upon the earth both during the day & the night: Two different words are used God’s action in placing these lights in the firmaments.
Vs. 16 “Made”: This is not the word in 1:1 “bara” (created something out of nothing) instead it is the word “asah” which means to carve out, labor or produce. God produced to great lights.
Vs. 17 “Set”: “nathan” which has the idea of relocation or perhaps you might say that God “presented” them in the firmament. The picture is that of the sky being a display window or a picture frame.
Vs. 14 “For signs and seasons”: The word sign is the same word used for Noah’s sign of the rainbow. God arranged the stars not randomly but specifically as a sign for those upon the earth. They were to speak of the glory of their creator and have been harnessed by man to navigate. Eclipses have been used to mark mileposts in human history. Through seasons then we see God setting up climate controlled seasons throughout the calendar year.
Vs. 14 “for days and years”: They exist as an instrument to measure time. God made the stars and all of this was visible which tells us that God’s creation “was a mature one!” These stars would have been billions of light-years away but at the very moment of their creation they were visible upon the earth. The light energy trail that would be necessary to see them from earth was created at the same time they were formed in the sky.
Vs. 20-23 On the 5th day we are given the creation of the aquatic life and those things that fly in the lower reaches of the sky. In verse 21 the word created is the same as 1:1 meaning that God created something from nothing, in other words God did not use any preexisting material in their formation. Up to this point there has been no animal life and as He now brings forth animal life from nothing we realize that contrary to the evolutionary theory which states “that life evolved from lifeless matter” we are told that God did not create it that way. Science has been unable to support any other theory based upon the fossil record. Simply put there are NO intermediary links between inorganic matter and the first appearances of life. Neither are there any links between early life forms and more complex forms. Looking at the fossil record life just “sprang” into existence a fact that scientists have observed calling it the “Cambrian Explosion”.
Vs. 20 The word “living creatures” is the Hebrew word “nephesh” for soul, so God is making a clear distinction between plants and animals. Biblically there are three major functions of the soul:
The rational: That is they can think
The emotional: That is they can feel
The volitional: that is they can decide
Though plants can reproduce after their own kind (which shows they are alive) they can’t fall in love, have any memory of the past or go through a guilty conscience. Now in the animal kingdom these functions of the soul vary from species to species in degree but all are evident.
Vs. 21-23 The words “great sea creatures” is literally long extended things and we are told that they “glided” in the water and reproduced again according to their own kind. So much for the Darwinian theory of the fish who skinned it’s under belly and grew appendages which over billions and billions of years became legs by which the fish now walked onto the land. The word for bird here is very broad and includes all things that fly including insects and bats.
In the words “it was good” is implied that that which was created functioned just as God designed.
III. Vs. 24-31 Made in God’s image
We now come to the crowning achievement of God’s creation, the sixth day. First note that it was a double day of creation as creeping things, (cattle and the like) as well as mankind was created.
Vs. 24-25 It seems as though the land animals were created on the early part of the 6th day and we see that the act of creating them was from the earth as God spoke to the earth and it brought forth life. The same basic elements that make up the earth are in both animals as well as mankind. The “living creatures” (soul of life) are of three classifications but they do not correspond to the system used by modern biologists:
Cattle: “behemah” the root of this word means to be dumb or meek and would include all domesticated land animals, such as sheep, goats, cows, camels, dogs etc.
Creeping things: “r’emes” which means to move about lightly or glide about. It would include everything that moves about close to the earth, such as reptiles and non-flying insects.
Beasts of the earth: This word means to move about freely and would include large non-domesticated animals. It would seem that the dinosaurs would have been in this category.
Again notice the words “according to its kind” which flies in the face of Darwinian thought which suggested that the diversity of species could best be explained by way of natural process of adaptation into higher forms of life. Their principal works out this way; “Giraffes were once animals with short necks who because the changing environment had to keep stretching their necks to get at the food supply, thus succeeding generations of giraffes adapted into a higher form of life with longer necks.” Now if that were true then would we not see parents who in succeeding generations lost a leg eventually produce children with only one leg? The reality is that this has nothing to do with adaptation into higher forms or natural selection but everything to do with genetics. The Darwinian Theory rests upon mutation as the process for this change but the fact of science is that mutation damages life not causes it to evolve into higher forms. What ultimately causes changes in species is that certain genes or traits are not suited for the environment over time get eliminated through death and thus are not passed on to succeeding generations. Nothing new is created rather the species has adapted through genetic trait elimination and thus the species is “refined”.
Vs. 26 The first difference we see in the creation of mankind is that there is a divine consultation about this creation. Who is God speaking with? The word used here for God is “Elohim” which is plural meaning three or more. Notice the use of the plural with the singular, “us and our (plural) with image and likeness (singular)” which is the strongest yet of the trinity in scripture, God existing is a three-fold unity. According to verse 27 “God created man in His own image; in the image of God” the “us” and “our” of verse 26 must refer to God not some angelic being as some suppose. But what exactly does this mean?
“Image”: The root of the word means to “carve out” and speaks of the dignity of man. Man is not only made with deliberate purpose and plan he is patterned after God. Now this does not, as the Mormons maintain, mean that God has the same physical characteristics as we do. Their famous line is, “As man is God was once, as God is man will become!” The context of this passage makes it plain that it is us who have been in the image God, not God who has been made in our image! Whenever God is being described in anthropomorphic expressions in scripture you can’t take them literally otherwise in Ps. 17:8 God would have to have wings. Thus there is a human likeness that is “carved out” in man that is like the triune God. As we have seen in the animal kingdom they have:
Body: Just as mankind does
Soul: They have a varying ability to (think, feel and decide).
There is something here that makes mankind unique in all of God’s creation and it’s that mankind is a spiritual creature. Jesus told the women at the well,
“God is Spirit and those who worship Him must worship Him in Spirit and truth.” Based upon what we have seen thus far in Genesis we can see three things that appear to be unique in God’s nature that we too possess.
1. Creativity: The ability to imagine, conceptualize and then fashion what
we imagined. We cannot create something out of nothing as God did but we can take that which is existing and fashion it into what we desired. No other of God’s creatures can do this.
2. Communication: God speaks or conveys ideas and discusses matters. Animals cannot communicate as we do. They make noises or even mimic our sounds but they are unable to pass on ideas in which they have discussed information. None of the animal kingdom has been able to advance its civilization through its communication.
3. Conscious choice: We call this free will and we alone have the free moral agency to distinguish and then act things that are good and evil. Just as we have seen God in this chapter declare that what He created was good.
“According to our likeness”: The word here implies resemblance or similarity to the ideal. We have been given everything necessary for us to function properly to God’s character and nature. Thus we are told to be holy for He is holy. In 2 Peter 1:3 we are told that, “His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness.” Adam not only had the capacity to be godly he was, he was creative, communicated rightly and prior to the fall made godly conscience choices. He was function as God had created him to in His likeness.
Clearly something has happened to mankind by which he has lost the ability to consistently function as God designed him to. Even though he still possess the image, (Creativity, Communication, Conscious and Choice) he can no longer function according to God’s likeness or if you function as God Himself would.
It was in this sphere that God gives mankind “dominion” or mastery over the rest of His creation. Nothing points so vividly to mankind’s fall then does the fact that we have become so much like that which we were designed to master!
Vs. 27 Women was not an afterthought even though we are told that she was not created until after Adam named the animals. Both were in God’s image and likeness thus they equally possessed the same spiritual nature that we have already scene. God will fill in the details of her creation in 2:18-25.
Vs. 28 God’s giving them mastery over His creation excluded mastery over their fellow man! If we would not have fallen then all of this inhumanity towards each other would never be! There is a similarity but also dissimilarity between all other creatures in their self-perpetuation; both are blessed and told to be fruitful and multiply but God’s plan is clearly marriage as we shall see in 2:24. In everything mankind was in God’s Image thus “God -like” and he functioned as designed thus “God-able” so man’s authority to function in the environment that was created for him was perfect or just as God himself would.
Vs. 29-31 It appears that God’s design for his creation was to be vegetarians (not until 9:3 are we told that God told Noah that every moving thing was food for him). No doubt there was a never-ending supply as plants were designed to continually replicate themselves through their own seed. As it was to be over all the earth we know that all that God had created was a paradise.
The animals appear not to be carnivorous at this time so there would have been no predators and all of God’s creation was living in perfect harmony, something that we are told that in the future will be restored. Everything that God created He now calls “very good” according to Ezekiel even the angelic world was perfect as we are told in 28:15 that even Lucifer was “perfect in your ways from the day you were created, till iniquity was found in you.” Thus there could not have been a gap between verse 1 and verse 2!