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Gen 1.

12 And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good. The earth brought forth ..... The vegetation of the third day sprang from the soil. This does not mean that the power to produce life-containing plants was in the soil. The idea of spontaneous generation is as alien to Scripture as it is to science. After his kind ..... This expression occurs ten times in the first chapter of Genesis, and altogether 30 times in the books of Moses, especially in Gen. 1, 6, and 7; in Lev. 11; and in Deut. 14. Reference is to kinds of animals and plants, not to their reproductive behavior. It is, however, a fact of nature that living things do reproduce offspring that resemble their parents. Variations within certain limits are possible, but those limits fall far short of creating distinctly new kinds of plants and animals. See Gen. 6.20; 7.14; Lev. 11.14-16, 29; Deut. 14.13-15. Gen 1.13 And the evening and the morning were the third day. See on v. 5. Gen 1.14 And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years: Let there be lights ..... "Lights," meoroth, is not the same as "light," or, of vs. 3 and 4; it means sources of light, light holders, luminaries. The expression that they are set in the firmament, or expanse of heaven, is chosen because it is there that the earthly inhabitant sees them. To divide the day from the night ..... To regulate and continue from that time forward the difference between light and darkness, a difference that had existed ever since God decreed light on the first day. For signs ..... These celestial bodies marked special acts of God's favor or displeasure as in Joshua's (Joshua 10.12, 13), and Hezekiah's times (2 Kings 20.11), and on the crucifixion day (Matt. 27.45). "Falling stars" served as one of the signs of Christ's second coming (Matt. 24.29).

Some have mistakenly thought that the celestial bodies were designed also to determine the individual destinies of men. Astrologers have appealed to v. 14 to justify their practice. However, the Bible so vigorously opposes any form of divination and fortunetelling that the thought has to be emphatically rejected that God appointed the sun, moon, and stars to serve astrologers as guides in predicting human affairs and destinies. Jeremiah warns the Hebrews not to be afraid of the signs of heaven, before which the heathen tremble in vain terror (Jer. 10.2); and Isaiah speaks with taunting irony against the astrologers, stargazers, and foretellers, on whose counsel it is folly and wickedness to rely (Isa. 47.13, 14). Although the superstition of reading the destiny of man in the stars never took root among the ancient Israelites, they did not have enough moral strength to resist in general the example of star worship of their pagan neighbors (Jer. 19.13; Eze. 8.16; Zeph. 1.5). For seasons ..... Yearly returning festival periods and other definite times were to be regulated by the movement of the celestial bodies (Ps. 104.19; Zech. 8.19). These bodies have, moreover, a definite periodic influence upon agriculture, navigation, and other human occupations, as well as upon the course of animal and vegetable life, as for instance the breeding time of animals and the migration of birds (Jer. 8.7). For days, and years ..... The days and years are fixed by the movement of the earth in relation to the sun, which in conjunction with that of the moon has provided men of all ages with the basis for calendarslunar, solar, or a combination of both. Gen 1.15 And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so. For lights ..... Not to introduce light for the first time to this world, for God decreed light on the first day, but to serve as a permanent arrangement for the distribution of light for this world. Gen 1.16 And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also.

He made the stars also ..... The words, "he made," have been supplied. As to the origin of the stars two principal views have been set forth: (1) The stars were brought into existence during creation week, along with the sun and moon. (2) The "stars," though created earlier, are here mentioned, in passing, by Moses, inasmuch as he is discussing the luminaries of the heavens. The first view necessitates the conclusion that prior to creation week the vast universe was an empty void. This conclusion seems unwarranted. [It should be something like this, "stars, as well."] However, on this as on many other cryptic declarations of Scripture regarding God's mysterious acts, we should be slow to dogmatize. We should not forget that the primary truth Moses sought to present in regard to the origin of the sun, moon, and stars is that all are the result of God's creative power. Here is a further refutation of the ancient but ever-recurring heresy of the eternity of matter. Gen 1.17 And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth,. Gen 1.18 And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good. It was good ..... Unlike our present earth, which has changed much as the result of the introduction of sin, the celestial bodies have not suffered from the results of man's transgression, and reflect their Creator's power. It is a universally known fact that the laws of the universe are faithfully obeyed by all celestial bodies. Astronomers and navigators are sure that no deviations from established rules occur in the astronomical world. They know that these heavenly bodies will not disappoint them, that they can be trusted because of their continual obedience to the laws laid down for them. Gen 1.19 And the evening and the morning were the fourth day. Gen 1.20 And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven.

Let the waters ..... We have here the populating of the water and the air by the creation of marine and winged creatures. The original may be translated, "Let the waters bring forth abundantly living creature that moveth," rendering more clearly in English the Hebrew phrase that means literally, "Let the waters swarm with swarms." The verb here translated "to swarm" is also used with the meaning "to multiply abundantly." The term applies not only to fishes but to all water animals, from the greatest to the least, and also to reptiles. Creature that hath life ..... The original of this phrase, nephesh chayyah, makes a clear distinction between the animals and the vegetation created two days earlier. It is true that plants have life as do animals and possess certain functions that resemble those of animals, but the fact remains that a marked difference exists between the plant and animal worlds. The animals are in possession of organs that allow them to make decisions, to move about in search of food, and to feel pain, joy, or sorrow, to a greater or less degree. Hence they can be called creatures, a word that cannot be applied to plants. This must be the meaning of the much-discussed Hebrew word nephesh, translated rightly "creature" in this verse, a term which attributes to the animal a higher form of life than to the plant, which is not a nephesh. The early translators correctly understood that the term cannot mean "soul" in this passage, and rendered it in a way that correctly conveys the thought of the inspired author. Fowl that may fly ..... The waters were to produce the water animals but not the birds, as the KJV appears to indicate. Chapter 2.19 states that "every fowl of the air" was formed by God "out of the ground." The correct rendering of the Hebrew text of ch. 1.20, "and let fowl fly above the earth," disposes of this seeming difficulty. The word "fowl," literally "winged beings," should rather read "birds." Both domestic and wild birds are included.