Just reading through genesis chapter one is a trip through confusion that generates more questions than answers.
For example, did God originally create the earth just six thousand years ago, or was it millions? When did He provide the cycles generated by interactions of the sun, moon and earth? If these cycles that cause the life sustaining weather profile of verse 14 were only instituted after the creation of plants, herbs and trees, verse 11, how was this living plant kingdom sustained, even briefly, without the perfected climate of verse 14? Then we are faced with the overwhelming scientific evidence that some type of man, animals, birds, and other fleshly life forms have existed on earth for many millions of years, not just six thousand, so how in the world would that ancient flesh have been sustained without the sun?
I am compelled to accept that Genesis is probably not exactly literal, but is a summary of historical events not necessarily in order. I have had no choice but to conclude that our week is a reminder of seven steps, not a literal seven day creation period that brought us to our world today, with each day representing a specific set of events. This clarifies the confusion by substituting the more likely scenario that our entire week is a living symbol of eons of creative events. This idea is the basis for a closer examination.
We who are the recipients of today’s Bible have infinitely more information than was available to the writer of Genesis. Today we benefit from 65 additional books and many in the New Testament, for example, provide much missing detail that can now be folded into any discussion of Genesis chapter 1.
So this brings me to the purpose of this article, which is to begin to set in order a sensible rendering of the meaning of Genesis by adding more biblical evidence, proven scientific record, and the wisdom of extremely important modern books like the “Mystery of the Ages”. The following begins my own rendition of the creation story.
It all began with the God we today call Our Father in Heaven. This God has always existed, and there never was a time when He did not exist. Even more startling is that He was not alone, but was in company of another God who also has always existed. This other God is the “Word” of John chapter 1. These two Gods exemplified perfect cooperation and harmony and agreed that the one we know as the Father would be the one in whose hands fell the final decision going forward forever into the future. They however, never disagreed at any time, ever.
Now clearly, science cannot conceive of even one inherently benevolent God, let alone two who have always existed, and that is because science is the evidence derived from things that are seen, or are physically tangible. God is thus far invisible to Science.
Only those who are specially called by the Father can understand the Spirit world of God, because spiritual concepts are only understood through the dynamic power of God’s Holy Spirit through faith, which is the evidence of things not seen, or not physically tangible. This of course is totally foreign to the scientific mind.
However, the inverse is remarkable for those who live by faith, since the book of Hebrews makes plain that the invisible hand of God is clearly understood by the very visible, tangible creation. This now includes the record scientists have uncovered by their observation of things that have long been locked away. The addition of this record to our study helps clarify some confusion found in Genesis.
Now back to the story. At some point, these God beings created billions of helpers, called angels. In the process of time they brought into existence the vast universe and developed a plan to beautify it. This began with a very special planet uniquely predesigned at headquarters to be the first to receive organic, finite life in myriads of forms. This was the planet we inhabit, Earth in the Milky Way Galaxy.
The next major step was for the Father to send His powerful Holy Spirit along with God the “Word”, and a large company of Angels from His majestic Headquarters far away, to the Milky Way to begin to patiently implement these ancient and ambitious plans.
After arriving, the “Word” first provided light and warmth, and then added liquid water on the surface and water as a gas to make the essence of the atmosphere above the waters. Then making the land appear out of the sea, He was ready to begin creating living plants and trees upon this land. What is remarkable is that, Contrary to secular opinion, Jesus Christ is the “Word”, and is therefore God of the Old Testament, God of ancient Israel!
Now back to one of our first questions. How could the forests and plant kingdom be created next without the sun, which according to the story flow of Genesis was created later? Comparing Revelation chapters 21-22 we find a provocative description of New Jerusalem, where there is no sun nor moon, yet plants, water and life all exist because God the Father and Christ are themselves the super powerful sustaining lights and heat.
This form of light and heat provided solely by the dynamic and personal glory and infinite power of God the “Word” is plausible at the first creation of the earth millions of years ago, but most likely not at the time of Adam’s creation. This is because the earth holds an abundance of scientific evidence that various kinds of humans existed prior to Adam and these prehistoric men left evidence of a connection to perpetual cycles of the sun and moon that preceded their own existence.
I believe that the more likely theory is that the Creator set in order the intricate cycles of the sun, moon and earth to cause the life giving and self sustaining atmosphere to develop eons before the time of Adam. This means that the Genesis story is likely a compilation of events that took place over millions of years, as well as events surrounding the creation of Adam just 6,000 years ago. We do not know precisely how this all happened, nor how long it actually took. We just have faith that it was done, since the earth has preserved the evidence, and this evidence has been discovered and documented for us through science.
Now this is amazing, since Science itself denies existence of a Creator. Yet for us who believe in God, this exhaustive scientific work of modern times has brought about a giant leap forward in unlocking the secrets of the Creator and the actual literal story of Genesis!
Eventually, after the plant kingdom was established, all kinds of fleshly creatures were created, each endowed with the inherent ability to reproduce itself, and to feed primarily on plants. According to the less ambiguous and continuing story flow of Genesis, the sea and lake creatures were next along with the bird kingdom.
Then came the land animals, and finally kinds of men, but the evidence is strong that no man prior to Adam was made in the express image of the Father and the hands on Creator, Jesus Christ. This is what marks the vast difference from the first early events of Earth’s history and the special creation of a new kind of man who was expressly designed and created after the God image through Adam and Eve.
So, in summary, here is a plausible sense of the seven steps of Creation.
First is the introduction to the infinity and majesty of not one, but two Eternal God Beings who pre-existed the material universe. Second was their creation of specialized helpers called Angels as well as the initial construction of the universe. Third was the skillful implementation of master plans to make earth habitable along with creation of a plant kingdom. Number four the fish and birds appeared. Fifth came land animals, and sixth was a forerunner of man. Previous generations of men were finally succeeded by a new and unique man, Adam made in God’s express image. Thus, each day of our week can serve as a memorial of each step with the Sabbath as a reminder of the overall plan. Perhaps this can help make sense of the otherwise confusing story of Genesis.