The creation of the world is dealt with straightforwardly at the very beginning of the Bible. The general account of the making of the whole universe is covered in Genesis 1:1 through Genesis 2:3. In the rest of chapter two Moses records the creation of mankind in relation to the rest of creation. This account assumes the existence of God, called first "Elohim" (a plural form). In chapter two, though, Moses uses the name that had been revealed to him - Yahweh. Throughout the Bible these events, and the existence of the Creator are assumed and elaborated upon.

Creation in Six Days Edit

Formless and Void

Creation before Light
Genesis 1:2

At first, all that exists in the universe is created (Hebrew: Bara), a verb of volition primarily meaning "choose." The Creator, here said to be God, signified by "Elohim," a plural form used with a singular verb. The universe is called "the heavens and the earth" as a unit. This mass was void of life and is described as "the deep," a term usually referring to a body of water. Taken literally, then, all that now exists started out as a very large ball of water[1] (estimated to be "few light years" in diameter[2]). The observed "laws of physics" by which modern scientists describe nature would then have caused immediate contraction based on gravity. This process, though, is interrupted by the Spirit of God and the formation of the earth and the rest of the universe began.
Let there be light

Let There Be Light
Day One

The mass of water was acted upon by the sound of the voice of God as he commanded "light" to come into existence.[3] As the sound penetrated deeper and deeper, water molecules were stripped of electrons, and light was the result.[4]  This light was high frequency energy, and would act upon the mass, converting it into all that exists as the creation week continued. The sphere of water had experienced its first "morning," ending the first day.
The waters above

Stretching out the heavens
Day Two

There was then a "spreading out" (Heb.: raqiya) of the waters to form "the heavens" (Ha Shamayim, or literally, "the there waters"), a process that apparently is still in

process.[5] The writer of the article cited above points out that this may be why the second day (as measured from the still massive center) was not declared "good." These "waters above" are apparently a finite "edge" of space and as such becomes an ever expanding shell estimated to have as much as half the mass of the universe.

Earth in bloom

The earth brings forth life
Day 3

Meanwhile, the earth finally was taking on the shape it now has as at least one landmass was emerging from primeval waters. To cover this earth God brings into being every kind of plant in full form, ready for the morning light. This means that the mass of the planet and its time of rotation had become near their present values.[6] On the fourth day on the earth, time in the far reaches of the universe is
Fourth Day

Lights in the heavens
Day 4

passing at unimaginable rates as God brings into being the innumerable masses that would soon become visible upon the earth. Nearby, though, God puts together the local star and its related planets to stabilize the earth to be a safe haven for life. The sun and moon, especially, have a special relationship, providing heat, light and tidal forces.[7]
Swarms and Flocks

Filling sea and air
Day 5

On the fifth day the oceans and the sky are populated with every manner of animal life. This life would be similar in most ways with that upon the land, but suited especially for its own media. The sea is called on to 'bring forth abundantly' living creatures (literally: 'swarm with swarming lifeforms'). The air, in like manner, 'flying things' would be placed there 'to fly' (noun and verb forms are from the same root). In addition, large water creatures (translated 'whales,' but also as 'dragons' elsewhere) were created (bara) along with the 'bringing forth' from the waters of lesser animals.[8] (See separate articles for Fish, Dragons, and Birds).

Filling the land
Day 6

Finally, God forms animals upon the land. These range in size from the smallest insect to the largest reptile.[9] They especially include the apex of creation: Mankind.[10]

A world for Mankind Edit

Adam and Eve

Adam and Eve
Day six

This account is a particular treatment of just how God made mankind. The male of the species homo sapiens was formed out of the elements available in the soil.[11] All other lifeforms were also so formed, but mankind would have a special relationship with the Creator.[12] For this reason, it appears, Moses uses the special name "Yahweh" to describe God's working to bring man and woman together. As in the general account of creation, so in this account, plant life is described first. In this special work, though, God prepares as special home - a garden called Eden, watered by four rivers that come out of its center. Once the fully productive garden is in place, Yahweh carefully places the man in Eden.[13]

The garden was available for immediate occupation, but Yahweh had prepared a tree that was not to be utilized for food. In his first words to the man, Yahweh instructed him to avoid the tree on pain of death. All seemed in order, though, for a long life ahead, since there were myriads of fruit trees and berry bushes from which to choose.[14] Another special tree was also there, called the "tree of life." It was possibly to be the primary source of food for mankind, but events would subsequently forbid its fruit from mankind as well.[15]

In preparing the man for his mate, Yahweh then brings scores of species to show him. It is assumed that this included a large array of animals that are compatible with mankind. However, the text indicates that no animal at the time was carnivorous.[16] On any account, the man ("Adam" from "Adamah" [ground]) was shown animals mated with their own kind. This brought to the surface an inequity, for there was no mate yet created for the man.

Yahweh, though, had a solution. Rather than working with the ground as he had with the rest of living things, He would use material taken from the man. In a process only hinted at, but appearing to modern science to be like "cloning," Yahweh brought to life a grown woman from the rib of the man who he had placed in a deep sleep. The man would awake to the sight of a lovely creature.[17] At this point the second requirement for mankind was given: "multiply and fill the earth."[18]

References Edit

  1. Genesis 1:1-2
  3. Genesis 1:3-4
  4. UCLA:Sonoluminescence
  5. Genesis 1:7-8
  6. Genesis 1:9-13
  7. Genesis 1:14-19
  8. Genesis 1:20-23 Three things were said to be 'created' : the cosmos, 'whales' and man. Other things were formed or made.
  9. Genesis 1:24-25
  10. Genesis 1:26-31 Much more is written about the sixth day, for it is among land animals that mankind would find their home.
  11. Genesis 2:7
  12. Genesis 1:27 Mankind was created, male and female, "in the image of God." As created beings, both men and woman are equal in the sight of the Creator.
  13. Genesis 2:8-10
  14. Genesis 2:9; 16-17
  15. Genesis 3:22-24
  16. Genesis 1:29-30 Plants alone are provided for food
  17. Genesis 2:21-25
  18. Genesis 1:28 In addition to procreation, mankind had the responsibility to take care of the earth and its inhabitants.
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