Gen 1:14-31 — Days 4-6 of creation
Mk 10:5-6 And Jesus answered and said unto them, For the hardness of your heart he wrote you this precept. But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female.
We have seen in the first three days of Creation how God created the heavens and the Earth, at first in a state of darkness and lack of order, and without any gap of time between the first and second verses. Then He began to speak things into existence, and made distinctions: between light and darkness, between waters and waters, between seed and seed, between kinds/species and other life in their own kind. God was forming the Earth for its unique place in His created universe, and for the unique life that He filled on it.
The Son of God came here to live and die as a sacrifice to cleanse all things on the Earth and in the heavenlies. And it is to Earth that He is returning! In God’s plan for eternal life with Him, the Lamb was slain before the foundation of the world. Redemption has always been the cornerstone of God’s purpose for this creation, in order to create the perfect and eternal new Heavens and new Earth after He fulfills all of His purposes for the present creation. We are all called to make proper distinctions in order to choose wisely, in accord with God’s will and His purpose. This is because He loves us, and it shows that we love Him. The Kingdom of God is light, and eternal life in light. To refuse to live in God’s light is to be eternally condemned to darkness, outside of God’s presence.
v 14-19 God spoke, and created lights in the firmament/skies to divide the day from the night. These lights (light-givers) are for signs and seasons, and for days and years. The sun, moon, and stars He placed in the heavenly places to serve the Earth. They are not to be worshipped, but the Creator of them is to be worshipped. His name under Heaven is Yeshua/Jesus. (Acts 4:10-12) Israel’s calendar is luni-solar, with the moon subject to the sun, whose light she reflects, having no light of her own. (The Christian calendar is solar, the Sun/Son ruling; the Islamic calendar is lunar, rejecting the Sun of Righteousness, with healing in His wings.)
The sun is the great light that rules the day; the moon is the small light, and, with the stars, rules the night. (Ps 136:1-9) God stretched out the heavens like a curtain. (Is 40:21-22; 45:12; 51:13; Ps 104:1-2) The universe did not expand over eons of time; God placed the lights that He created in the skies that He made, and stretched them out to accomplish His will and purpose. God saw that it was good. The evening and morning – the same time-frame and period as the first one day, and before the sun and moon came into being – were a fourth day.
The extent of the universe is vast, and cannot be measured, nor its laws broken. (Jer 31:35-37; 33:14-26) This provides covenantal security for all who trust in the LORD. It is based on what Moses wrote that God said and did in Genesis 1!
Just as we saw that the third day speaks of death and resurrection in the life of plants, so here also we can see the death of Messiah in the setting of the sun, and His resurrection in its rising – darkness and light – each evening and morning.
God’s Word goes out to accomplish what He sent it for – an “expanding universe” — and it returns to Him having accomplished His will – a “contracting universe”. We even see that near the end, the heavens will roll up like a scroll! (Is 34:4; Rev 6:12-17)
In evolutionary theory, the sun came long before the Earth; but God Himself tells us that He created the Earth, and then the sun a few days afterward. There was already light before the sun; and that light is the light of God, which will be the light of the eternal City of God. Who do we believe knows the facts, and the truth of them? Interestingly, God says that these celestial lights are given for signs. Yeshua/Jesus, the uncreated Light, came into the world during the fourth 1000-year period of history; in prophetic historical time, on the fourth day, the day that God placed the sun into its place of service. (2Pt 3:8; Hos 6:1-2)
The moon’s cycles determine the times of the months, and Israel’s holidays which YHVH appointed for them are given according to the time of the lunar month, such as, the first day, the 14th day, the 10th day. A New Moon is darkened, and marks the beginning of each month (as the Creation was dark before the light). (see
The sun, moon, and stars will also display a ‘sign’, pointing to and telling us that the wrath of God is about to come against His enemies, and against the enemies of His people — Israel/the Jews, and Christians – after the great tribulation/Jacob’s Trouble, and just before the Lord returns; and He gives a final chance for all people everywhere to repent and call upon His Name to save them. (Joel 2:10-11, 30-32; Mt 24:29;Acts 2:19-21; Rev 6:12-17) The Word of God comforts believers in Jesus that we will not suffer GOD’s wrath. (Mt 3:7-12; Rom 5:9;1Thes 5:9-10)
v 20-23 From the waters, God spoke and created all kinds of water creatures/animals, and also of birds that fly in the firmament of the skies. God created teems – an abundance – of living things to glorify Him and to enjoy Him and His goodness. God also created the great sea creatures. Just as with the vegetation, each of all of these water and sky (and land) creatures are each according to its kind. No species can reproduce or become another kind.
And God saw that it was good, and He blessed them by speaking to them commandments to live by in accordance with His will and purpose: be fruitful and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the land.
Notice that God did not tell them to refill/replenish, but to fill. There was no prior Creation that God judged, and now was starting over with a renewed one. (Nor is the New Covenant a renewed covenant, but a new one.)
And the evening and the morning were a fifth day.
There is scientific and archeological evidence that dinosaurs existed in human history, even cave drawings. These animals are also referred to in other passages in the Bible – in the Torah, in the Prophets, and in the Writings.
All of these creatures which God made from the waters are called “living souls/creatures/beings”, and so are the land animals (created on the sixth day) and human beings. This distinguishes all of the animals from the plants. The animals and Man (male and female) have souls, that the Creator did not give to vegetation.
v 24-25 Here God made from the earth/the dry land the animals of the ground. And it was so. Each according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.
The climax of these six days is the creation of man – male and female – in the image and likeness of this unique and holy Creator God. This sets man apart – distinguishes human beings – from all other created things, including animals and probably angels.
v 26-28 “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion….” The Triune God communicated together to create Man – both male and female together — to be unique and special, even as YHVH is. The whole rest of the Bible tells us what He is like, and how we are to reflect Him in our lives. We are also three-in-one as individuals — with a soul, body, and spirit. We are suited to have fellowship with God in a way that no other created thing can. When Yeshus/Jesus came as the Son of Man in flesh and blood in order to redeem us, He came as a man, and not as a monkey, nor as an angel. When He returns, He is personally again coming as the Son of Man, and not as an alien or as some singularity with AI.
God blessed them, and spoke, giving commandments to hear and do. Notice over what God gave dominion to Adam (and to Eve), and over what He did not: over the fish, birds, and every living thing that moves on the Earth, but not over other humans! (Even after the Flood, God did not give dominion to man over other humans.) We will rule with Messiah over others only during the Millennial Kingdom, after those who have part in the First Resurrection have been conformed to the image of the Son of God, which is not yet perfected even in born-again believers in our present bodies because of sin. (Rom 8:28-30; Rev 2:25-29; 20:4-6)
v 29-31 In the beginning, both man and animals were vegetarians (not vegans), by order and provision from God. And it was so. (After the Flood – a hugely significant event in human history – the moral God and Creator of the amazing human body gave all people permission to eat meat, except for the blood. (Gen 9:1-7; 2Pt 3:5-7)) “Then God saweverything that He had made, and indeed it was very good. So the evening and the morning were the sixth day.”
The sixth day brought God’s creation to its finished state, on the last day. (It would appear that Yeshua created the angels on the first day, and they witnessed what the LORD said and did. (Job 38:1-7; Jn 1:1-3;Col 1:15-17; Ps 148) God’s Spirit and Word brought the order and purpose that He wanted. It was all very good, perfectly according to His will for His purpose and glory. Yeshua tells us to abide in the faith until the end. What He began He will finish, and it will all be as God has spoken, and according to His will and purpose. We look for the perfect to come, in the New Heavens and New Earth where righteousness dwells, and there will be no more sin of any kind, and God will be all in all! (1Cor 13:10; 15:20-28; 2Pt 3:11-13; Rev 21 – 22)
The main message of Genesis chapter 1 is that God – the one God who is a plural unity – is declaring to Israel, and through Israel the Church, and through us to the world as His witnesses – that He (YHVH) is the eternal and only God: He is the Creator of the heavens and the Earth, and the seas, and all that is in them. All other gods are impostors and idols. YHVH is the God of gods. He is revealing Himself – who He is, and what He has done, and will do — to His covenanted people and to all creation to know Him, and to worship Him alone. It is He (even Yeshua/Jesus) who is the God of Hosts, who made the sun, the moon, and the stars, and all things, both visible and invisible. He is the Judge, the lawgiver, the King, and our Savior. He is holy. He is good. He is all-powerful, all-knowing, and everywhere present. Each thing created by God is for a purpose, and we who have been saved from our sins and sinfulness through faith in the truth of the gospel have been called back into God’s purpose to cooperate with Him through living faith and obedience, a lively hope, and love.
Creation relates to the Kingdom of God, not to us to make our kingdoms instead of and against His. (This was Lucifer’s sin, and he causes many others to follow him in this same way.) The necessity for redemption and salvation — for the cross — was already God’s plan before He created the world. The Creator and Redeemer is to be worshipped, not any created thing, nor the work of man’s hands. The seventh day Sabbath is a reminder to Israel of our Creator, and of our Redeemer and Deliverer, who created everything in six days, and rested on the seventh, and gives us rest. (Ex 20:8-11; Dt 5:12-15) The New Heavens and New Earth for eternity are for those who fear the LORD and love Jesus/Yeshua for who He is and all that He has done for us. (1Cor 2:6-12; Is 64:4; Ps 31:19; Ja 1:12)
Paganism and evolution both describe a universe where violence (evil) has always existed, even believing that the Earth and the moon came about through violent collisions with other heavenly objects. Such a worldview creates a dilemma that there will never be a solution to escape the dread of eternal existence with evil. Jesus tells us that unless He returns, no one is left alive, as everyone seeks to prove that they are the strong who survive! (Mt 24:21-22) Only those who know the Father and the Son are certain that there is indeed a solution, which the Creator Himself has spoken and done what is required.
It is a grave mistake for both Jews and Christians to add to or to take away from the Word of God, which Moses wrote, as did other writers and prophets in the Old Testament, and later apostles and other writers in the New. They all support what is written by Moses in Genesis and in the rest of the Torah. The Scriptures are all profitable for instruction, for reproof, for correction, and for instruction in righteousness. It is the glory of the one, true, living God to entrust His people to represent Him faithfully – in word and in deed. This is our privilege, our honor, and our responsibility. The devil is a liar and a deceiver, and he targets the elect to deceive us, if possible, into thinking that we can be like God if only we do not believe what God has said, but rather listen to the serpent. Humans know only a little, and that even in part and as through a cloudy glass. YHVH God knows all things fully. May we all be found faithful to keep His words in this adulterous and sinful generation, serving our God and Father, and our Lord Jesus Christ, by the grace and power of the Holy Spirit. Even so, Come, Lord Jesus!
This article originally appeared on Streams in the Negev, March 23, 2019, and reposted with permission.
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Howard Bass is the congregation pastor/leader of Nachalat Yeshua (Yeshua's Inheritance) in Beer Sheva, Israel.