Let's look at the first chapter of Genesis. What a powerful display of God's ultimate Sovereignty and powerful authority! I have read this many-many times and one aspect of this chapter has slipped me all this time. I have dealt with it a little bit here and Lord willing I shall delve into it more at a later date.
In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. (1-2)
Notice that there had to be a beginning and that God used the creation of heaven and earth to initiate it. Could God have done everything in this chapter in one day? Absolutely! God could have done it with one breath. In these first two verses do we have the picture of a carpenter with his hammer and nail building something? Absolutely not! Notice it said God 'created' the heaven and the earth in the beginning. Before God initiated a beginning it was eternity and God created out of nothing and brought something, i.e., the heaven and the earth. Some people have put a distinction here between verses one and two, thinking that something happened between the verses in order to make the earth without form and void because God forbid that He should create something without form and void. I think that teaching is not of the Spirit and is contrary to what God is laying out here. This is an example of a week. Again, God could have done everything associated with this first chapter in an instant but He chose to do everything over a weeks period of time. God has a purpose and plan for everything that He does and for everything that happens!
And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day. (3-5)
What is the first distinction that we should notice? It doesn't say 'created' here, it is 'God said.' God spoke and it was done. In the rest of these verses it is the same thing, God said it and it is done. It is the same today, God speaks and it is done. There are three more references to the word 'created', but we will deal with them when we get there. The best commentary of Scripture is Scripture itself. Look at these verses and let them sink in as to God's powerful authority!
Psalms 33:6 By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth.
Psalms 33:9 For he spake, and it was done; he commanded, and it stood fast.
Psalms 148:5 Let them praise the name of the LORD: for he commanded, and they were created.
Matthew 8:3 And Jesus put forth his hand, and touched him, saying, I will; be thou clean. And immediately his leprosy was cleansed.
John 11:43 And when he thus had spoken, he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth.
Notice if you will another thing about this verse. When God created this light, it was so strong that God had to divide it from the darkness. If He hadn't divided it would have been light all the time. Again all according to His purpose because He knew how He was going to make us and how we needed the night to rest the bodies that He gave us. But, even more than that, this is all a part of the ultimate picture of a week
And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so. And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day. (6-8)
God made a distinction between the heavens and the earth on this second day. We get the picture that there is this great divider such as a curtain or a net, but this is only to help us understand that there is a difference between the two. It is put in words that we can understand!
In Scripture the word denotes an expanse, a wide extent; for such is the signification of the Hebrew word. The original, therefore, does not convey the sense of solidity, but of stretching, extension; the great arch of expanse over our heads, in which are placed the atmosphere and the clouds, and in which the stars appear to be placed, and are really seen. -Webster.
Psalms 104:2 Who coverest thyself with light as with a garment: who stretchest out the heavens like a curtain:
Isaiah 40:22 It is he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; that stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain, and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in:
Isaiah 42:5 Thus saith God the LORD, he that created the heavens, and stretched them out; he that spread forth the earth, and that which cometh out of it; he that giveth breath unto the people upon it, and spirit to them that walk therein:
Isaiah 42:9-13 And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so. And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that it was good. And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so. And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And the evening and the morning were the third day.
On this third day is when God brought the great bodies of water together and also the great spans of dry land. The root word of the Hebrew word here for 'sea' means to roar. And what do the seas sound like when the tide is coming in, they sound like they are roaring. God makes another distinction here for the first time in these verses. That distinction is reproduction. God boldly proclaims that like bears like. Grass cannot bear fruit, just like fruit cannot bear grass. The flesh produces fleshly fruit while the Spirit produces spiritual fruit.
And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years: And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so. And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also. And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth, and to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good. And the evening and the morning were the fourth day. (14-19)
On this fourth day is when God creates the stars to govern the night.
Psalms 19:1 The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.
Psalms 136:8 The sun to rule by day: for his mercy endureth for ever:
Psalms 136:9 The moon and stars to rule by night: for his mercy endureth for ever.
Jeremiah 31:35 Thus saith the LORD, which giveth the sun for a light by day, [and] the ordinances of the moon and of the stars for a light by night, which divideth the sea when the waves thereof roar; The LORD of hosts [is] his name:
Jeremiah 31:20-23 ¶ And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven. And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth. And the evening and the morning were the fifth day.
Now on the fifth day is when God starts bringing the creatures into being. One of the first things to notice is that these four verse only refer to one day. God brought forth the creatures of the water and the creatures of the air and commanded them to be fruitful and multiply. Notice again though that they multiply after their own kind. The water creatures will fill the waters and the fowl will multiply in the earth.
And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so. And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth. And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat. And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so. And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day. (24-31)
On this sixth day, God created the rest of the animals. Again He distinguishes them after their own kind. Those that creep on the ground and those that walk on the ground. After He created the animals He created the greatest of His creatures, and that is man. Man was created in His own image, and in that image he gave dominion to man over the creatures. Again, God gave a command to be fruitful, multiply and replenish the earth. But, each is to multiply after his own kind.
Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made. (2:1-3)
On this seventh day is when God rested. Did God need to rest? Absolutely not! He set this day aside as a picture for us to follow. Before Adam fell, he had dominion over the animals and was to tend to the garden of Eden but this wasn't work. It wasn't until after he fell that this picture that God has given us here in this first chapter is put into play. Here is another aspect of God's ultimate sovereignty over ALL things and ALL events. It was no accident that Adam fell, it was not something that God had no control over or something that He left up to Adam. This picture here in this chapter points to a week full of work and if Adam was not to fall, it would have been meaningless and pointless. Not only is this aspect here but also this seventh day points us to Christ. This rest that God took is a type of the rest that Christ gives to His elect.
Hebrews 4:4-10 For he spake in a certain place of the seventh day on this wise, And God did rest the seventh day from all his works. And in this place again, If they shall enter into my rest. Seeing therefore it remaineth that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief: Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts. For if Jesus had given them rest, then would he not afterward have spoken of another day. There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God. For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his.
Let's go back to the first day, shall we? Let's look at it again and pay attention to what it doesn't say.
And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day. (1:3-5)
These verses proclaim that God created light by His command. But what was that light. It wasn't until the third day that God created the stars and the sun and moon. This light wasn't the sun, and yet it was so bright that God had to intervene and divide it from the darkness or else it would have overpowered it. I firmly believe that this light was a type of God's glory. Where do I get that from? Look at the book of Revelation with me.
Revelation 21:23 And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof.
Our ultimate destination as the elect, called of God, believers is this glorious city of God. There is no need of the sun because God's glory will fill it with light.
Isaiah 60:19 The sun shall be no more thy light by day; neither for brightness shall the moon give light unto thee: but the LORD shall be unto thee an everlasting light, and thy God thy glory.
Ezekiel 10:4 Then the glory of the LORD went up from the cherub, and stood over the threshold of the house; and the house was filled with the cloud, and the court was full of the brightness of the LORD'S glory.
2 Thessalonians 2:8 And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: