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The Universe according to Genesis


The conditions at the beginning of the world were thus: It was dark, there was nothing but water everywhere, and God's spirit moved around in it. It doesn't say that God created the water, for all we know it the water is "co-eternal" with God. Then God spoke and by doing so performed his first act of ex nihilo creation, or something from nothing. Now there was light to see, but water was the only matter which existed, with nothing in the water to see with the light, not even a surface with waves.

Next God performed his first act of judgment, he separated the light from non-light. All through the Sacred Scriptures God will repeat this same act of screening or filtering, more often with people. It was Sunday night but there was not yet a sun, only a time when it was light, and a time when it was dark. That tells us God separated the light and darkness by intervals of time.

A firmament is a solid dome or vault, as shown in the image here. This dome was God's second act of ex nihilo creation, created on Monday morning. The purpose of the solid dome was to divide the water that was, at that point, everything, into two separate reservoirs, upper and lower. Only on Monday did God call the firmament or dome "heaven". That is why verse one is not when God created the heavens and earth but only a chapter heading. Since heaven is identified as the solid dome, it also meant there was water "above" heaven.

Tuesday was a busy day. After heaven was created, God proceeded to create the Earth, by producing land and dividing the sea from the land. Only then did facts on the ground catch up to the first verse in the Bible. And God performed his first quality self-check. Then for the rest of Tuesday God occupied himself by covering the land with the first living things, in the form of vegetation. But this was before the creation of the sun, which now provides the energy for all life on Earth. On this first day, plants drew their life-giving power from the whole sky, which was brilliant with undifferentiated light. And God performed his second quality self-check.

On Wednesday God started to decorate the firmament with lights. The lights were placed in the solid dome that covers the earth. Comets were provided to give "signs" (such as the passing of great kings). The stars with their familiar patterns revolved to mark the seasons. The sun and moon and stars were placed in the firmament, where they could move independently. This presumes the firmament is transparent, at least on the inside surface. And a curious thing has happened. Where before the light of creation was diffused over the whole sky only in daytime, now the light was confined to the sun during the day, to the moon at all times, and to the stars at night. And God performed his third quality self-check.

Thursday was when God populated the Earth with all the creatures which were not confined to the land. This included every creature swimming in the rivers and seas, as well as all the birds and bats and winged insects. God performed his fourth quality self-check, it is has become evident that God is working to an orderly and precise plan, with creation ordered by categories of habitat.

On Friday God made all the creatures which were confined to the land and performed his fifth quality self-check. Wingless insects such as mites were created at the same time as the higher-order mammals such as apes and horses. This claim is in direct contravention of the progression of species asserted by Darwinism. And yet, God said, "Let the earth bring forth" the living animals, which is precisely the claim of abiogenesis, that non-living chemical evolution preceded the beginning of life.

Now God proposed to make human beings, and for the first time he used the plural, when he says "let us make man...after our likeness". Some Christians take this to prefigure the Holy Trinity, yet even the doctrine of the Trinity asserts there is but one God. And God doesn't begin to use the plural until the beasts of the earth are created. Obviously this means God proposed to make a hybrid creature which is like an animal, but also made to resemble God in some way. He said man was to be made after "our" likeness; that is, combining attributes of the animal kingdom with divinity. If the days are not taken to mean literal 24 hour periods of time, this interpretation allows for evolution to co-exist with creation.

Both male and female humanity reflects the image of God. As a spirit, God is not a "he" but an "it" with no physical gender. And since humans resemble animals in body, the image of God is reflected in mankind's interior life. Man's mind was made in the image of God's mind. Our body may be either male or female after the fashion of animals, but our interior temperament, male or female, also reflects the image of the temperament of God, which has elements of both.

God authorized sex and the colonization of the planet, and he put man in absolute control of all the fish and birds and beasts of the earth, to do with as he wished, as long as he didn't eat them. In the beginning, God did not authorize a meat diet for human beings. We were only permitted to eat fruits and herbs. And God said he gave man the fruit of "every tree", but later amended this permission to mean every tree except the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, which he strictly forbade man to eat, and the Tree of Life, which he guarded with cherubim to prevent man from eating.

In the beginning, all the animals were only allowed to eat vegetables, not each other. All the birds of prey with their sharp talons and all the lions with their fangs, only ate green leaves. No blood was shed anywhere on the whole earth. The lion lay down with the lamb.

In the beginning, everything that God created, including human beings, was "very good". This stands in stark contrast to the Gnostic view (which has bled into the Puritan view) that matter is intrinsically evil, and only the abstract things of the spirit are pure. No, God created matter and found it to be very good.

In the next chapter, God rests on Saturday, and then we flash back to the important events of Creation Friday when, during a single twenty-four hour day, Adam is created, then the animals, which are named by Adam, and finally a female human companion is created for him.

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