“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” At first glance this seems like an introductory statement to the creation story, but the book of Genesis continues to describe this initial stage of creation. Everything was darkness and void, and God’s spirit hovered over the waters.
We tend to jump past these first two verses and say that light was the first thing God created. But before he created the light he created the deep water mass that was darkness and void, the substance that he used as his first ingredients in his creation of the heavens and the earth.
In Genesis 1:2 God hovered over the waters he had created, the surface of the deep. Whatever this first mass was, it had depth though it was also described as formless and empty.
In verse 3 God said “Let there be light,” and the first light appeared. Then God separated the light from the darkness and called the light day and the darkness night. This became the first day.
Are verses 1 and 2 considered part of the first day? Or did God simply start counting time when he created light and called it the first day? I don’t know the answer, nor do I plan to lose any sleep over this, I simply like to look at the whole picture when I am looking at scripture.
Some people stumble over the idea that God created light before he created the sun. This doesn’t bother me. Light is made of light waves. We have many sources of light today – from light bulbs of many kinds to the glow that is emitted from fire or other very hot objects. Light is a kind of energy. Our sun is the primary source of light on the Earth, but it is a very small star among all the stars in the universe. We only know that God created enough light to get things going on that first day.
I like to comment on the phrase “God said, ‘let there be …’ ” I don’t know how many people claim to understand Einstein’s theory of relativity, E = mc2, I don’t have a clear grasp of it myself. But I do understand about math formulas. Everything on the right of the equals sign must be equal to everything on the left. The big E in the formula stands for energy. The “m c squared” on the right stand for mass times the speed of light squared.
OK, I agree, that is mind boggling. But if he was right when he created this formula, in my way of thinking, he explained how God spoke things into existence. The big E is the energy that came out of God’s being when he “spoke” or exhaled it to the other side of the equation where it became the mass and motion that made up everything in our universe.
Don’t worry if that goes over your head. I just find it an exciting idea that scientists might have explained how God spoke things into existence. I don’t think the cave men knew about Einstein’s theory either. Some scientists seem to think the book of Genesis was written by cave men telling stories around campfires.
I’ve wandered all over the place describing the first five verses of Genesis. I hope I have said things that will increase your faith in the Genesis account. The most important verse of all is probably the first verse. In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
The Creation, a Bible storybook for children by Janice D. Green