God Created (Genesis 1:1-23)
God’s nature is exposed and explained through the account of creation. In this first chapter of Genesis we see that the universe is not the result of an accident. God is the subject—He is the One who existed before anything. While humans can make, form, and build things, God alone creates. Every time the word “created” is used in the Old Testament, God is the subject, and as Creator, He is the absolute sovereign over all things, both the heavens and the earth (i.e. the entire universe). His sovereignty demands our allegiance and total submission.
The second verse begins with an ominous tone of un-comfortability—chaos, void, formless, empty. It communicates the idea of something that is uninhabitable. But the verse ends with hope: “the Spirit of God was moving.” The formless earth was under the care of the divine Spirit, who was hovering over it, ensuring its future development. The first three days will remedy the formlessness.
Day 1 (verses 3-5)
First, the deadly darkness is forced back with radiant light; the light that makes life possible. By creating light in the darkness, God revealed His nature and will; darkness heard Him and vanished as the voice of the Lord penetrated the dark silence. The light God called day, and the dark God called night.
Day 2 (verses 6-8)
Second, God created an expanse to separate the waters from the waters. We can picture what is taking place: dense clouds above with haziness and fogginess; waters below, with no real separation between the two. And once again, God separates them by raising the sky up and making the expanse between them.
Day 3 (verses 9-13)
Third, God determined boundaries for the seas, separating them from the land (Job 38:8-10). He makes the dry land flourish with vegetation. God created the earth with generative capacity, endowing it with self-replicating vegetation.
Day 4 (verses 14-19)
Fourth, He makes luminaries for governing and dividing the time and seasons. Certain pagan religions—then and now—worshiped false gods that were identified with the sun, moon, and stars, worshiping the creation instead of the Creator (Rom 1:25). The fact that there was light on Day 1, but no Sun until Day 4 is not a problem. Genesis 1 is not describing natural processes but is detailing divine, supernatural activity—God Himself is the source of light (Ps 104:1-2; Rev 22:5).
Day 5 (verses 20-23)
Fifth, God makes fish to fill the sea and birds to occupy the sky. The life of both came into being by the direct command of God. Having brought order to the chaos in the first three days, He now begins filling the emptiness in Days 4 and 5.
How does the account of the first five days of creation shape your worldview? How does it affect the way you view God’s nature? How does it affect the way you view God’s authority? How does it affect the way you view science?