December 30, 2021 – Thursday
Genesis 1:1 NIV
1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
Yesterday, December 29, 2021, I looked at In the beginning in both Genesis 1:1 and John 1:1 to see how alike they were. Today I would like to look at Genesis 1:1 alone (as much as possible) and then tomorrow do the same with John 1:1. The reason for this is that I looked at so much information and commentary yesterday on both that I want to share some of it with you.
A great question came from the NIV First-Century Study Bible commentary, What was before creation? How did this question come about? It came about because the verse can also read “When God began to create,” which led ancient interpreters to wonder if the heavens and the earth were the first of God’s handiwork. And then where did angels come from or God’s throne or even wisdom? The Bible provided an answer of sorts as Proverbs became an interpretive springboard: “The Lordbrought me [wisdom] forth as the first of his works . . . I was formed long ages ago, at the very beginning, when the world came to be” (Proverbs 8:22-23)
When we look at the whole verse, In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth, Charles F. Stanley Life Principles Bible Notes tells us, The Lord spoke the words that brought the heavens and earth into being; before that nothing other than God existed. Of course, scripture does not have God speaking until verse 3 and then on through verse 30. I am not sure I agree with Stanley that nothing other than God existed before He created the heavens and the earth. Certainly nothing in the known universe we live in existed prior to God creating it. Today, we are told there could be (theoretically) other universes, which God would have also created. I am always leery of any statement that limits what God can do. I do agree with Stanley when he states, Only He can create something out of nothing (Hebrews 11:3).
The Zondervan KJV Commentary had some very interesting observations. I like this one best, The Bible always assumes and never argues God’s existence, as is seen in its opening phrase, In the beginning God. It also states with this verse, The Bible begins with an affirmation of God’s existence and His creative activity. The opening verse, although part of God’s creative activity on day one, introduces the six days of creation. And then, Although everything else had a beginning, God has always been (Psalm 90:2). One more observation for the Zondervan Commentary I really like, The positive, life-oriented teaching of verse 1 is beautifully summarized in Isaiah 45:18.
I will stop here with the hope that I have motivated you to look at this verse more deeply (and others as well) and meditate on what it says about God and His ability to create out of nothing; to think on His love for us which makes no sense at all, yet we continue to love Him and thank Him for His Son Jesus.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, You are our Creator and You love us. This defies comprehension, yet I remain so deeply grateful. – In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Riley D. Driver – Pastor
Calvary Chapel of Dayton in Beavercreek