1998-08-29 - In The Beginning
The Genesis Series, Part 1
Thank you folks for the prayers and letters of encouragement. It was really nice to hear from those of you who could take the time to write. I have been encouraged by my wife to do my devotional the same way I handle our personal Bible Study. What better place to start than "In the beginning." Oh yes, before I forget and for ease of typing this over and over, all scriptures quoted herein unless otherwise noted will be from the 1901 American Standard Version of the Bible.
Genesis 1:1 In the Beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2 And the earth "was" waste and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep: and the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.
If we look at the creation of the heavens and the earth as the beginning I would have to say that there was more to the picture before they were created. Quite a bit more. In fact it will probably take me at least two devotionals to adequately cover the subject. I will tell you why I think there was more from facts I draw from other related passages of the Bible. Shall we begin our journey?
Hebrews 11:3 By faith we understand that the worlds have been framed by the word of God, so that what is seen hath not been made out of things which appear.
This verse says there obviously were building blocks that were available that were used to create the things which we now see; we just could not see them. I do not understand the structure or composition of these things - but as the verse implies, I accept by faith that God used them to create the visible things that we now see. Perhaps someday scientists will be allowed to understand them as they do the elements which we observe now, and explain them also to us. This knowledge, so far as I know, has never been available.
I also realize that God had a plan that was developed prior to the beginning spoken of in Genesis 1:1
Jude 25 to the only God our Saviour, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, power, before all time, and now and for evermore. Amen
Romans 16:26 - Now to him that is able to establish you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery which hath been kept in silence through times eternal
Gathering up the facts in these passages, I see that there were ages past where the gospel God's plan of redemption was indeed formed. It was decreed before eternal ages. I also believe that God the Father and God the son -- Jesus Christ -- talked about this plan. Eternities prior to our very existence, we were called in Christ Jesus according to God's plans and purposes according to His grace, to hear His voice and ask Him to lead us to a saving knowledge of Him through the atonement of His son Jesus Christ, who died on a cross for the sins of the whole world.
Psalm 2:7 I will tell of the decree: Jehovah said unto me, thou art my son; this day have I begotten thee.
So when we study the beginning of creation as spoken of in Genesis 1:1, we realize that we are only looking at the beginning of the visible heavens and earth. The facts gathered in related passages and axiomatic fundamental truths clearly indicate that there were indeed eternal ages prior to this marvelous creative act of God. Before this vast expanse of time between then and the Word's In the beginning in Genesis 1:1 was where the Gospel plan was hatched.
In the second verse of Genesis we see that the earth "was" waste and void … This word I totally disagree with as the correct translation. In fact this same word is translated in Genesis 19:26 - became. Genesis 19:26 But Lots wife looked back and she became a pillar of salt Now if we were translating the original text to a foreign language, and we had to choose which word to use, we would have to come up with a justifiable reason why we would choose was or became. As far as I can tell from the immediate context of Genesis that we are looking at ,we have only enough facts to make a 50-50 decision and hope we got the right one. Flip a coin? Nope let's look again for related passages about God's creation. But before we go there, let me share a few simple things about Bible study and doctrine. Truth as we see it in the Holy Bible is harmonious. Truth will not take away or diminish or conflict. If a doctrine does not keep in harmony with all scripture, and it diminishes or conflicts with truth as a whole, then the person promoting such a doctrine should look seriously at what the Bible says, and teach in accord with it. This is not a hard concept to grasp. Keeping this fundamental rule in the back of our minds, let's look at some of the related passages about Creation and dig out some of the facts.
Isaiah 45:18 For thus saith Jehovah that created the heavens, the God that formed the earth and made it, that established it and created it not a waste, that formed it to be inhabited: I am Jehovah and there is none else.
If (and there is no if about it) God created things perfectly (and He did) the earth was made to be inhabited -- then what happened? The second verse of the Bible says God created it and it was waste and void Wrong word! This would conflict, disjoint and diminish God's own words in the verse from Isaiah quoted above. We now know that the correct translation for this verse would be rendered this way. And the earth became waste and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep: and the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. What we do not know is why this happened. Yet we do know that something happened. Immediately. Satan would come into my mind as perhaps being involved, or causing something to transpire to wreak havoc. Next week I will discuss his possible role in all of this -- where he (satan) was prior to the Beginning spoken of in Genesis 1:1 and some peculiar facts, along with meanings of certain words, so that prayerfully our faith increases by hearing God's Word. Until next week, may the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, through the Messiah -- Jesus of Nazareth -- bless you. Amen.
In His Service,