Read Genesis 1:4, Genesis 1:10, Genesis 1:12, Genesis 1:18, Genesis 1:21, Genesis 1:25, Genesis 1:31, and Genesis 2:1-3. What is the significance of the refrain “it was good” in the first Creation account? What is the implied lesson contained in the conclusion of Creation (Genesis 2:1-3)?
At each step of the Creation account, God evaluates His work as tov, “good.” It is generally understood that this adjective means that God’s work of Creation was successful and that God’s observation that “it was good” means that “it worked.” The light was illuminating (Genesis 1:4). The plants were yielding fruit (Genesis 1:12) and so forth.
But this word referred to more than the efficiency of a function. The Hebrew word tov is also used in the Bible to express an esthetic appreciation of something beautiful (Genesis 24:16). It is also used in contrast to evil (Genesis 2:9), which is associated with death (Genesis 2:17).
The phrase “it was good” means that the creation was working nicely, that it was beautiful and perfect, and that there was no evil in it. The world was “not yet” like our world, affected by sin and death, an idea affirmed in the introduction to the second Creation account (see Genesis 2:5).
This description of the Creation radically contradicts the theories of evolution, which dogmatically declare that the world shaped itself progressively through a succession of accidental happenings, starting from an inferior condition to a superior one.
In contrast, the biblical author affirms that God intentionally and suddenly created the world (Genesis 1:1). There was nothing happenstance or chancy about any of it. The world did not come about by itself but only as the result of God’s will and word (Genesis 1:3). The verb bara’, “create,” translated in Genesis 1:1-31 as in the beginning God “created” the heavens and the earth, occurs only with God as its subject, and it denotes abruptness: God spoke, and it was so.
The Creation text informs us that “everything” had been done then (Genesis 1:31), and according to the Creator Himself, it was all judged “very good” (Genesis 1:31). Genesis 1:1 states the event itself, the creation of heaven and earth; and Genesis 2:1 declares that the event was finished. And it was all completed, including the Sabbath, in seven days.
|Why does the idea of billions of years of evolution completely nullify the Genesis Creation story? Why are the two views incompatible in every way?|