Genesis 1:2-8

Humanity Makes A Mess of God's Word

Humanity Makes A Mess of God's Word
Genesis 1:2-8

This morning we're going to keep working our way through Genesis. This is the fourth message on Genesis. I think we're going to get out of verse one. This morning's message is called “Humanity Makes A Mess of God's Word.” And are we going to see that this morning.

We are going to get into the details of what happened on the first two days of creation... and answer some of the attempts to change what scripture says about what God did on these days of creation. Let's start, open your Bibles to Genesis chapter one. Let's start by reading about the first day of creation...

1 - In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

2 - The earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters.

3 - Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light.

4 - God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness.

5 - God called the light day, and the darkness He called night. And there was evening and there was morning, one day.

Oh boy... these first few verses bring up a ton of questions, objections, and various unbiblical interpretations. Humanity can make an incredible mess out of God's Word.

For example... here is an important question. What is the relationship between verse one... “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” and verse two? “And the earth was formless and void...” We need to talk about that transition. Are these two verses related at all?

It's been interesting studying this, and there are some theologians who say, “No, verse one is a title. It's the title for this section.” “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” That includes everything. And it's a title for what comes next. It's a minority opinion.

One thing I found interesting is, if you look at the older translations, such as the King James version, the Geneva Bible and the Scofield Bible, or even the 1977 version of the NASB. the second verse starts with the word “and.” In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth, AND the earth was...

You've got a direct connection there with the word “and” there. That directly ties those two verses together. And reading the older commentaries, such as Leupold, they make a point that the word “and” should be there.

However... if you read the NKJV, or the ESV, or the current NASB they start verse two with the word “the.” In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. ... The earth was... That allows for, it does not require it, but allows for those two verses to be disconnected linguistically. And it allows for a long time gap between those two verses, based on the English wording... they are not as strongly connected linguistically.

And the newer commentaries, they don't address the first word of verse two. Now a good commentary not only helps you understand what a verse says, but it will look at alternate meanings and explain why they are not valid. But that doesn't happen. The newer commentaries just ignore this entirely.. they just say “this verse starts with the word 'the.'”

Other English translations, such as the NIV and the CSB, have chosen a middle road. They start verse 2 with the word “now.” In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. ... Now earth was formless and void... That seems a little wishy-washy to me. You can take it any way you want to. It doesn't really say anything.

So we are already running into our first big controversy, and we haven't even gotten out of verse one yet. I haven't really got past the first word of verse two. Are verses 1 and 2 directly connected, or is it possible there was a time gap between verses one and two? Before I answer that I'd like to present one other position on the relationship of these two verses.

Douglas Kelly presents this in his book on Genesis. He is a Hebrew scholar and somewhat well-known conservative theologian. He states that, based on Hebrew grammar, verses one and two are intimately connected together. The grammar does not allow them to be separated.

He states that what is happening is that in verse one God creates everything, everything, ALL matter, space, time, energy. Everything that will be... it is all created in verse one, but it is unorganized and chaotic. And then in the rest of chapter one, God is taking what He created in verse one, and taking this existing material and organizing it into the various things.

So, when God says, for example, in verse 14: “Let there be lights in the firmament of the heavens to divide the day from the night;” He is not creating the sun, moon and stars. He is speaking that existing matter and energy into organized masses that we call stars, and planets, and galaxies.

He created the matter and energy in verse one, out of nothing... “ex nihilo” And then by speaking He organizes it into the lights in the firmament of the heavens...

That's interesting. I've not run into that one before. The one problem I have is that the word translated as “created” is “bara” ...In the beginning God created... “bara.” In the beginning God bara... “Bara” always refers to God creating. Creating out of nothing. What Kelly says is, “bara” means “God created from nothing.” So in verse one God created everything out of nothing. When you get to the other days of creation, God created out of existing matter, but since that existing matter was created out of nothing, you can say He is creating out of nothing when He creates the sun, moon and stars for example. It seems like that is a little bit of a stretch.

While it is interesting, and I don't think it takes anything away from God's glory, I'm not going to go along with Kelly. So why did I bring this up? Why did I even bother mentioning this?

To make the point that... the purpose of Genesis is not to give us the specific step-by-step details of what God did. Remember from last week... God's purpose, in telling us this whole creation story, is to reveal who He is. To reveal His power, His majesty, His greatness, His depths... the story about creation is not about the individual steps of creation... it is about who God is... and it's about who we are... It's God's plan to glorify Himself through humanity. It's about God creating the stage upon which His plan will unfold.

And so, since it does not provide the details, and that does leave the door open for some Bible interpreters have different opinions... need to have another word in there... different but reasonable opinions. It cannot be something that results in a distortion of scripture, or distortion of God's character, a contradiction in scripture... Kelly's proposal I think is kind of reasonable... but I'm not going to go along with it... but, you can't have something such as the Gap theory. It does not leave the door open for the Gap Theory.

This is what people are proposing comes between verse one and two... and what it says is that God created everything... that's in verse 1... and then there was a long period of time, hundreds of millions of years... between verse one and verse two... in which evolution worked to create many different types of life.

But then God destroyed everything, and God started a new creation in verse two.

That story has many logical inconsistencies and problems, and it violates so many other areas of scripture, that it simply does not make sense... But it's what many people believe. So we're going to take a look at that... let's start by getting an understanding of what the Gap theory proposes:

According to the Gap Theory: Genesis 1:1 describes the initial creation of the universe. Following this, evolution took place. Now see, the purpose of the Gap Theory, the reason why they put a big gap in here... because of what? They want to fit evolution in there. And evolution takes millions of years. The Bible... if you try to put evolution in, there is no place for it to get in. So they are shoehorning evolution in between verses one and two. And then they say, after these hundreds of millions of years go by, there was then a devastating global disaster destroying all life on Earth and leaving a vast fossil graveyard that we are now digging up.

This devastating global disaster resulted in what is described in Genesis 1:2. "the earth was without form and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep."

What caused this global disaster? Got to have a reason. One idea is that it was the result of the rebellion of Satan. Satan and his angels rebelled against their Creator in Heaven. And then God cast them out of Heaven, cast them down onto the earth... and destroying the earth in the process.

So then... supposedly starting in verse two we have the six days of the creation week, and in the Gap Theory these are literal days, but they are days of re-creation, with God re-creating some of the kinds of animals and plants destroyed when Satan was cast out of heaven.

That's how they try to fit evolution into the Bible. Evolution requires hundreds of millions of years. So, if you are going to believe in evolution, you need fit all that time into the Bible... somewhere... somehow... someway.

But, here's something I find very interesting... neither believers in evolution, nor believers in the Bible... neither group accepts the Gap theory. It violates what they believe. It doesn't fit with either one.

Basically the Gap theory has been thoroughly shown to be impossible from both perspectives... but it is still it's very popular. I've heard about the gap theory for twenty years. I figured by now people would have given up on it. It keeps showing up. Showing up all the time.

So what we have are some people who do not know their Bible, or people who are ignorant about what evolution actually teaches.

So let's ask two basic questions: #1 - Is the Gap Theory Scientific? #2 - Is the Gap theory Biblical? The answer to both is “no.”

No geologist or secular scientist accepts the Gap Theory. First, because it brings God into the picture, and that cannot be allowed. No. That is fundamental to evolution-based science... not matter what the evidence, only naturalistic explanations are allowed. So that rules out the Gap Theory for them.

BUT... in addition to that, it's scientifically impossible. A cataclysm that would leave the earth dark, as described in verse two, dark and "without form and void" would be orders of magnitude greater than Noah's flood.

It would require a worldwide nuclear or volcanic explosion that would effectively disintegrate the whole crust of the earth... in order for the earth to be without form.

And for the earth to be totally dark, there's no light, and to be covered with "the deep" everywhere, it would take an explosion so huge – well imagine this – all the mountains in the world... instantly being blown into dust throwing billions of tons of rock dust up into the air... in order to make the earth totally dark. No light at all. That's what you'd have to do.

I'm hope you are grimacing... going “Whhhaaaat?” That type of cataclysm would disintegrate any existing sedimentary deposits and their fossils. Supposedly this cataclysm buried all the fossils that we find today. But the cataclysm would be so great that it would obliterate any evidence.

Thus the Gap Theory, which is supposed to accommodate fossils and geological ages, requires a cataclysm that would destroy all evidence for those geological ages. So the gap theory is not scientifically sound.

But, is the Gap Theory biblically sound?

No, it is not. Without looking very hard, what do the fossils show? ... It is a record of death... disease, cancer, fighting, and violence. If the Gap Theory is true, then all this is all happened before the fall. But scripture says... what does scripture say? What brought death into the world? Adam's sin. These two things don't go together.

Adding this gap means there was a pre-fall world in which God uses death to evolve life and randomly create new life forms. Why would an all-knowing, loving God be so wasteful? This makes Him a God of death... not a God of life.

And you can't blame Satan for sin and death. In the Gap Theory. It was Satan's rebellion at the end of the gap that caused cataclysm. That means his rebellion comes after the millions of millions of years of death and disease and fighting that's shown in the fossil record.

So Satan had nothing to do with the death and disease and suffering that was happening for these hundreds of millions of years. God is responsible for that.

And they say Satan's fall forced God to bring about this pre-Adamic cataclysm that so devastated the earth that it was left formless, void, and dark... with no light. Imagine that... God threw away all that He created because of Satan... that makes no sense. That's a very weak God they have.

And if this is the way it happened, Satan rebelled before Adam was created. So now Satan is on the earth... and God recreates everything with Satan there... days one through 6... Satan is present... and God calls it what? Good? As He creates, God calls his creation, which includes the father of lies, Satan, and God calls it good? I don't think so.

Then at the end of the six days He calls everything very good... and all the while Satan and evil and death are present on the earth. That's NOT good!

And should we then say that the Bible errs when it says that Adam's sin brought death into the world, to the point that... as Romans 8:22 says, “the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now.” ...when – according to the Gap Theory – death had already been in the world for hundreds of millions of years?

It looks like that, all Adam did was to reestablish sin in the re-created world. He brought sin back.

And that death had existed... and was the driving force for evolution... survival of the fittest for hundreds of millions of years... that means death was, and is still a part of God's creative purpose?

God initially made His creation with death being a part of that creation... and that creation existed, evolving and getting better for hundreds of millions of years... then God destroys it... and He blames the need to destroy it on Satan... and then He makes a new creation... and Adam sins... so God then blames death on Adam. This is a God who does not seem to be in control of His creation at all.

In addition: Romans 5:14 says, “death reigned from Adam until Moses.” It looks like we have an error in scripture. Did the Holy Spirit, when He inspired Paul to write this, forget that death had reigned for hundreds of millions of years before Adam?

Scripture says that sin entered the world through one man, Adam... that's Romans 5:12 and 1st Corinthians 15:21 says... “For since by a man came death” and that same verse continues by saying, “by a man also came the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive.” So is scripture wrong about this also?

And John 2:2 says that: Our future deliverance from sin and death has been purchased by the substitutionary death of Jesus Christ, who is "the propitiation for our sins and ... also for the sins of the whole world."

But if death is part of God's creative purpose... if evolution, using natural selection and death, was how God brought about new types of life... how is it that now Christ's death puts away sin and conquers death? Why would God even want to conquer death, when it is what He is using to make everything better? This does not make sense.

The Gap Theory destroys the gospel. The Gap Theory is not Biblically sound... it is not in agreement with scripture.

There is no gap between Genesis chapter one, verse one and verse two. When the second verse says the earth was "formless and void" that is describing the initial condition of the earth.

So now let's look at verse two... this is from the current NASB... we'll continue using that. It says: The earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters.

What does: “formless and void...” mean? Thought about that? This seems to be God's starting point with the earth. A good synonym would be... unformed and unshaped.

By the way, those wanting the Gap Theory to be true, they don't give up... they say “formless and void” means wasted. In other words, they say the earth existed for millions of years, then God smashed it up... destroyed it... making it formless and void. But as we said, it doesn't fit. And it is wasted, only in the sense of not having been put into shape. People try to twist scripture to get it to say things it doesn't say. And what they do is decrease God's glory.

The word translated as formless is used in a number of other places in the Old Testament, and is usually translated as: nothing, empty, futile, and waste.

So what is God saying His creation began with? We can go to 2nd Peter.. 3:5 – by the word of God the heavens existed long ago and the earth was formed out of water and by water...

What it appears God started with... in the beginning of His creation the earth was a formless blob of water... not even a ball of water... it was formless, void... empty... desolate...

Have you guys ever watched a video of the astronauts up in the space station? One of the thinks they love to do... they play with water. And they'll pour out a little bit of water... and it forms...? what do you think it forms? A globe. Actually that's what I thought. But it doesn't. It forms a blob. You'd think the surface tension would make a globe. But actually makes a blob. And it is continually shifting and changing in shape. And can punch a hole in the middle and then you have a donut shape. And it keeps the donut shape. It's formless blob that can be shaped into anything... and that's somewhat what scripture has described... I mean a huge blob of water in the weightlessness of space... with the water surging and moving... just as we see on a small scale in the space station. And then scripture says...

“and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters.”

There was no light. No light at all. Absolute darkness. If you were there, you would not be able to see the blob of water that was to become the earth. There was no light. That's a major deficiency... thats' something that is missing. And there is a second deficiency... the word “deep” describes it.

The word “deep” does not just mean deep water... the Hebrew word means surging, raging, primeval waters. The deep... it's ominous and scary... to ancient Middle Eastern people... deep water was dangerous... it was unknown... it's frightening mystery... thats' why their ships hugged the coastline.

So this is not just a calm, uniform, peaceful blob of water floating in space... it's surging, it's unsettled, it's unformed, it's totally dark, it's deep... and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters.”

We learn from Colossians chapter 1 that it is the Son, the second person of the Trinity, who brought all things into existence. And here we see that the Spirit is involved. The Spirit is moving over the surface of the waters.

What is the purpose of this? What's the Spirit doing? The “moving” indicates a continuous action... it was ongoing. Some say the Spirit was hovering and vibrating... and since the Spirit is seen as the source of life in other passages, this vibrating is bringing life to the waters. Well we don't have life in verse two.

Scripture does not say that either. Scripture does not specifically say what the Holy Spirit was doing, other than moving over the surface of the water. We don't know what the Spirit was accomplishing. We just know that the Spirit was involved in creation. And that the Spirit had a purpose in doing what He was doing. But scripture does not reveal that specific purpose, nor what the Spirit was doing other than moving over the surface of the deep. And that's about all we can say here. We can speculate, but that's all that scripture tells us.

BUT now something spectacular happens... I can here the theme of 2001 playing... It's dark. And then all God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light.

God spoke and it happened. There was absolute total darkness... no light at all... then there was light. That had to be a spectacular moment. To have seen that would have been incredible.

Where did the light come from? Did God have a flashlight? Make it a big one. No? Many people assume this means God created the sun... that's where light comes from... right? It comes from the sun. But scripture says that God created the sun, moon and stars on the fourth day... so now we have a contradiction in scripture. But it is not a actually contradiction coming from what scripture says... this is a contradiction that comes from what people ASSUME. That's usually where the problem is. We make an assumption, and our assumption puts a contradiction into scripture.

So, does God need the sun or stars as a source of light? Is He dependent on them to make light? No. Not at all.

Couldn't God have just created a continuous stream of light, coming out of nowhere... Could God do that? Yeah. Just some light to shine on the earth? He could just make the light... He doesn't need a star or a sun for there to be light. But... there is another option...

Might God be the source of the light? Scripture talks about God's glory being a source of light. For example, Revelation 21:23-24 describes the New Jerusalem that will exist in the new heaven and new earth. It says:

And the city has no need of the sun or of the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God has illumined it, and its lamp is the Lamb. The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it.

God could be the source of light. And He will be in the end. But in Genesis scripture does not identify the source of the light on the first day of creation. It could very well be that God's glory. He could have created a stream of light out of nothing. Or done something else. All we know is that God said, “Let there be light.” and there was light. And that's all we need to know. Because God has given us all we need to know.

We need to be careful not to make assumptions about scripture... assumptions that those who attack scripture are hoping we will make assumptions that will lead us astray... make wrong conclusions about where the light came from.

What we do know is that God said let there be light, and there was light. And although we're curious, we don't need to know the details. And God is not limited by what we can think of... what we can conceive. And God is not required to give us the details... so we need to remember... this account of creation is to give us the scientific details of creation. It is to show us who God is.

What we know is that God spoke and it was so. Psalm 33 verse 9 says this...

For He spoke, and it was done; He commanded, and it stood fast.

But now we come to another area where Christians, actually these are Christians who will once again attack scripture... verse 3....

Then God said, “Let there be light;” and there was light. God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light day, and the darkness He called night. And there was evening and there was morning, one day.

There is a problem that just does not go away. The part about “And there was evening and there was morning, one day.” We talked about this last week. This description makes it perfectly clear that God created everything in a series of six 24-hour days.

But you've got to find some place to fit evolution into the Bible. There has to be a place where you can get a lot of time in. The earth has to be very old. The problem is that, you see... mutations that increase information in DNA are incredibly, incredibly rare. They don't happen very often, if they actually happen at all. So that means, evolution requires a lot of time... more than hundreds of millions of years.

Listen to MP3

People blindly believe that evolution is true, and to do that they have to believe in hundreds of millions of years.

When people are believing evolution, whats happens? People are trusting Darwin instead of trusting Jesus. That's why I brought a sign from our creation museum that I thought would be appropriate. It's a sign that has a lot of truth in it. We're going to put it right here. Trust Jesus... not Darwin. We don't put our trust in Darwin... there was evolution and we're going to re-adjust the Bible in order to incorporate millions of years.

People are saying, I know Darwin was right. I know evolution is true, so the Bible must mean something other than what it plainly says. They are putting their trust in naturalistic science... Has science ever come to wrong conclusions? Please don't laugh. I heard some laughter over there. Yes. Often. We don't want to run down science. I love science. The word “science” means knowledge. It is good to have knowledge, but it needs to be true knowledge. And as our ability to investigate God's creation has improved, our knowledge of God's creation has changed. Many scientific things that people believed 100 years ago are now known to not be true.

What has happened in the area of evolution?

We are now able to see, at the micro-micro level what's happening in our cells... for example we can now easily sequence DNA... our knowledge has increased tremendously... and we now know scientifically that evolution is not possible... could not have happened. The mechanism that supposedly resulted in evolution – mutations and natural selection... is actually causing us to degrade. We are going downhill, we are not getting better. I'll explain this.

Evolution is based on random mutations... and natural selection preserving those mutations that are beneficial... in that they help the organism to better survive. That's true. This supposedly results in the organism becoming better and better. That's the part that is false. Genetics and microbiology have revealed this is not what happens.

You see... it has been determined, first off, that mutations are nearly always either neutral or detrimental. Meaning there is a loss of function, there is a loss of information. Only in very rare instances is there possibly a mutation that results in an increase in information or complexity, and even those are disputed.

So, for all practical purposes, all mutations are either neutral or detrimental.

That does not mean that there are no beneficial mutations. Detrimental mutations can be beneficial. Okay, am I contradicting myself here. Well, one of the common is that of bacteria becoming resistant to penicillin. They say, “Look. Penicillin no longer kills the bacteria. The bacteria have evolved to become better.” They're able to survive.

No. That is not evolution... and, the bacteria has not improved.

It is not evolution because evolution requires an increase in information and specified complexity... resulting in a new form of life. For bacterial to evolve into humanity, which is the story that supposedly happened... single cells evolved into humanity... that requires an increase in genetic information. Humans are a lot more complicated than single cellganisms.

So the bacteria is now resistant to penicillin. Something beneficial, for bacteria at least, not for us, has happened. What has caused the bacteria to become resistant to penicillin? Bacteria is killed by penicillin because they take in the penicillin, and they metabolize it... it actually would become a poison and it would kill the bacteria.

What has happened is, the bacteria has lost the ability to metabolize penicillin. So they take in the penicillin, the penicillin is not metabolized, it doesn't become a poison, ad the bacteria survives. So it has been a benefit. And those bacteria, usually in hospitals, that can survive the penicillin tend to proliferate, and you get a lot of them. But, what has really happened? Their DNA is damaged. There is a mutation. The bacteria has lost a function, they've lost information, they've lost the ability to metabolize things such as penicillin, they have actually gone downhill. They are less complex. They have less information. The organism has degraded... it is less fit... and eventually these pile up and the organism will die off.

The mechanism of evolution... mutation and natural selection... does not result in improvements and more complex life forms. It has now been proven... this is fact, this is not speculation... microbiology has proven that mutation and natural selection actually destroys life. Mutation and natural selection takes complex life, and degrades it into lower, less complex forms.

So we don't need a gap between Genesis verse 1 and 2 to fit in something... something called evolution... that we now known to not happen. And by-the-way we didn't need science to tell us that anyway... we didn't need that fairy tale of evolution... we've known that all along from reading God's word... that God created. And we'll get to that, as we cover each day of God's creation.

That's why... getting back to Genesis, when God says “And there was evening and there was morning, one day.” it means exactly what it appears to mean... in its plain and simple reading, a normal 24-hour day. Long ages do not need to be artificially forced into the Bible in order to accommodate evolution... a straight forward reading of scripture is the correct reading... it always has been and always will be.

Continuing now... verse six, going to get into the next day: Then God said, “Let there be an expanse in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters from the waters.”

7 - God made the expanse, and separated the waters which were below the expanse from the waters which were above the expanse; and it was so.

8 - God called the expanse heaven. And there was evening and there was morning, a second day.

What was this expanse that God created? What are the waters above and the waters below? We were talking a little bit about this in our Sunday School class today.

Well, taking the easy question first... the waters below are the waters that, at this point, form the surface of the earth. That's all there is. That's the easy one...

But as for the rest, once again God has not given us the details, and there is a lot of speculation about what is being described here. But overall, what is happening is that God is creating and preparing a space for human life... we're calling it the stage that God is creating... for human life to be created... and what's going top take place on this stage? God will be glorified. It's all for the glory of God. He is creating a place for us to live.

God could have done it all at once... could have done it all in a blink of an eye. But He has chosen to do it step-by-step, over a period of six days. And on day two He creates an expanse that separates two areas of water, There are a number of ideas about this, but they are all speculation.

Some say, and this is the one I favor, God created a blob of water, just as we've talked about. And that blob of water was surrounded by a thick fog. There is no atmosphere yet. Just a thick cloud of dense fog... a dense layer of water vapor... you go from water and eventually you get out to nothing. It goes gradually.

And the expanse God creates is the atmosphere. God is creating air, and it separates the water that forms the surface of the earth from the water in what are now the clouds. And in verse 20 we see the birds flying in this open expanse. So that's one thought.

But, there are some other views on this... for example that the expanse is outer space. Verses 14 through 17 describe the sun, moon and stars being created and being placed in the expanse of the heavens. If the term “expanse” includes outer space, then the waters above are now somewhere out there on the edge of the universe. The expanse, the separation is very large.

Verse 8 gives us another clue. God calls the expanse, in verse eight, heaven. He defines what that expanse is. We do know God is in heaven... but the heaven where God is, is not part of this physical world and so it is not what these verses are talking about. That heaven is called the third heaven and is mentioned in 2 Corinthians 12:2. Paul says, “I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven. Whether it was in the body or out of the body I do not know—God knows.”

In verse 4, Paul here equates the third heaven with “paradise,” the realm where God dwells. So that's not what Genesis is talking about. But, since there is a third heaven, there must be two other heavens.

The thought is that the second heaven is “outer space,” the realm where the stars and planets are located. And the first heaven is the earth’s atmosphere, the realm of the birds and clouds.

So there is one word that is used to name three places. That means we need to use the context to know which place it refers to. For example:

Psalm 104:12 speaks of “the birds of the heavens” — this would be the first heaven, the atmosphere.

Isaiah 13:10 says, we find “the stars of heaven and their constellations”— that's a reference to the second heaven, to what we would call outer space.

And Revelation 11:19 describes the opening of “God’s temple in heaven”—that's the third heaven, or God’s dwelling place.

The context tells us what realm the word “heaven” is referring to. What makes sense in the context here in Genesis one verse 2, is that the expanse is the atmosphere.

Now there are some interesting twists to this. Some have said that verses 6 through 8 in Genesis 1 are talking about the creation of an ice canopy that surrounded the earth. And the separation that is described is between the water forming the surface of the earth, and the ice canopy forming around the earth, that's what God is creating on day two.

However, the idea of an ice canopy has pretty much been rejected. For example, the constant bombardment of objects from outer space would destroy an ice canopy. It is estimated that 60,000 tons of meteorites hit the earth each year. Most burn up in the atmosphere... which by-the-way, if there was an ice canopy, you would not be able see any shooting stars. Those are chunks of rocks coming in from outer space, heating up in the atmosphere and glowing. And usually totally vaporising in the atmosphere. So there could not be an ice canopy now. But even back then... 60,000 tons of meteorites hitting it [the supposed ice canopy], and coming down to the earth. but a lot of it makes it all of the way down to the ground. So one problem with the ice canopy, it could not survive all the meteorites.

So instead they now theorize it was a water vapor canopy... clear water vapor surrounding the earth. And this water vapor canopy, we don't see it today, it collapsed during Noah's flood. And that's where the 40 days of rain came from.

Well, that doesn't work either... In order to make water vapor what do you do? You put heat into it. You heat it up. You see, you put a pot of water on the stove. You heat it up. It becomes water vapor. What happens when that water vapor turns back to water? To liquid water. The heat comes out of the water. So what you get if you had a vapor canopy, that turned into rain, it would literally cook the entire planet with the heat that would come out of the collapsing water vapor canopy. The heat is released, and everything on earth, would heat up... everything on earth would have been boiled. So that doesn't work either.

In the end scripture does not specifically tell us what the expanse is. We're running up into that again. It's not God's purpose to reveal these details. It just says God created an expanse. And I favor the expanse in verses 6 through 8 being our atmosphere. That's what fits with the context. It makes sense. And it's a separation being between the surface of the earth and the clouds... the water vapor up above The atmosphere is the first heaven.

Outer space is the second heaven, and that is where the sun, moon and stars are. And the third heaven is where God is.

So we got through two days. Let's review. Today we've looked at the first two days of creation.

Some people try to fit hundreds of millions of years, that are required for evolution, into a supposed gap between the first two verses. But we saw that is neither scientifically nor Biblically sound. In addition, since science has now shown evolution is impossible, which we should have known in the first place, there is no need for a gap, just believe God.

We saw that God first created... maybe a blob of water that was in complete darkness. The water, that formless earth, that is described... the Hebrew words are describing as being surging and moving, and being very ominous, ... but in complete and utter darkness... and then God said “Let there be light.” And there was.

If there was a moment in creation where I could be there and watch it, I'd loved to have been there. This would have been so, so spectacular.

Then we had day two in which God separated the waters by placing an expanse between the waters below and the waters above.

Scripture does not say more about that, but as we mentioned my guess is that since God is creating and preparing a world for people to live on... so this is a description of God creating the atmosphere... the clouds above and water still forming the surface of the earth.

So we've gone through the first two days of creation... next week we'll continue with day three. And I hope to get through days three, four and five next week. As we continue seeing what God did in the first week of the existence of everything.

Let's us pray...


Wide and Narrow Roads

Many people, when they die, will stand before Jesus and say:

Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles? - Matthew 7:22

And Jesus will say to them:

I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness. - Matthew 7:23

Get your Bible out and read Matthew 7:21-23. These are some of the most frightening verses in the Bible.

They describe people who believe with all their heart that they are saved. They have no doubt that they know Jesus and they've done many great things that prove this is true. Put Jesus says, 'Depart from me...' He doesn't know them.

Are you truly trusting Jesus? Scripture says to examine yourself to see if you are in the faith (2 Corinthians 13:5). Have you done that?

Do you read your Bible regularly? Do you fear false teaching? Are you growing in your obedience to God? Are you growing in your understanding of what God wants? Do you regularly share the good news about Jesus with others?