Read with Me

 Genesis 1:3-5 (HCSB)
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 He called the darkness “night.” Evening came and then morning: the first day.

 Listen with Me

These verses continue the narrative of God’s initial creative actions. He had already created the vast heavens, the space that comprises the physical universe. But that space was completely empty except for a single water-covered globe spinning in the vast darkness.

Darkness is not actually a thing. It is merely the absence of light. The next thing God did was to speak light into existence. Some might wonder how there could be light on the earth with no sun, no moon, and no stars, none of which would be created until day four. But God is able to produce light in the same way that He created everything else – from nothing.

God created the light in such a way that it came to the earth from one direction, with the other side of the globe facing the darkness. All was now in place for a time keeping system: a spinning globe and a directional light source. As the Earth’s rotated, each part of it sequentially entered the darkness, night, and then rotated into the light, day. This comprised a period that God defined as evening and morning, one day.

With all these things in place, God ceased his work for the remainder of the 24-hour day. Some wonder if the meaning of the Hebrew word for day, “yom”, might be stretched to allow for the vast ages required for evolutionary theory to have any chance of working. But as God inspired Moses to document the creative process, He was careful to include with each “yom” that indicates a time period, a number, and the terms “evening” and “morning”. In Hebrew grammar, as an English grammar, anytime the word for day is used with a number or with the words evening or morning, it is constrained; it can only mean a normal 24-hour day.

Some wonder how God could create everything in only six 24-hour days, and insist that there must be millions or billions of years covered in these verses detailing God’s creative process. But the fact is, as the all-powerful God, He could have created everything in the blink of an eye. His purpose in stretching out creation to six days followed by a day of rest was purely to set down a rhythm for the people of the world (exodus 20:8-11).

Pray with Me

Father, our problem when we approach this very clear narrative is not only that we bring to it our own ideas of what must have happened and then try to warp and twist Your narrative to fit those ideas. It is also that we impute to You our own limitations. But you are absolutely right. You have no limitations. You are all-powerful and You could have created everything in a single moment. Help me, Lord, to always approach Your word with the understanding that You are perfectly capable of communicating the truth, and You are perfectly capable of then ensuring that that truth continues to be transmitted faithfully through the ages, all the way down to us. Amen.