- When was heaven created?
- The two contradictory creation accounts. 1:1-2:3, 2:4-25
- Who created heaven and earth? 1:1
- How long did creation take? 1:3-2:3, 2:4
- When did God divide light from darkness? 1:4-5, 1:16-19
- Were plants created before or after humans? 1:11, 2:4-7
- When were the stars made? 1:16-19
- From what were the fowls created? 1:20-21, 2:19
- From what were the animals? 1:20, 2:19
- Were humans created before or after the other animals? 1:25-26, 2:7, 2:18-22
#1) The Bible answers this definitively, once and for all in Genesis 1:1. In the beginning, God created the heaven and the earth. It is impossible for the human mind to fully fathom an infinite timespan or a time before our concept of time. God makes it simple for us. At the very start of His creative project, He made the heaven and the earth. That point begins our existential timeline. The skeptics allege that the creation of the heaven in the beginning contradicts scripture from the book of John. As I understand it, they use Matthew 25:34 to support Genesis, but then use the book of John to show a contradiction that does not exist. Matthew 25:34 reads as follows:
“Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.”
This verse clearly agrees with Genesis. It says that the blessed ones will be called together to inherit the kingdom that was created from the beginning.
John 14:2, however, reads:
In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
The skeptics seem to think this indicates that Heaven is being prepared/created for us. Ladies and gentlemen, this is not a contradiction! Jesus has gone to prepare a space for us. He has not gone to create Heaven for us. The Heaven was already made in the beginning! What Jesus said can be analogize to the owner of several mansions who tells his family that he will get one of those mansions prepared for their habitation. It does not mean he’s building a new mansion for them. There is an obvious difference between God creating the Heavens and Jesus preparing a place for us.
#2) The two Creation accounts are part of the same consistent story. Chapter 1 of Genesis outlines the order in which God created everything. On day 1, He created the heaven and the earth. Days 2-6, He created everything that inhabits the two realms. On day 7, He rested. Genesis 2 is not another creation story, nor a contradictory reiteration of the account of creation. It is the same account. In Chapter 2 (of the book of Genesis), however, we focus on the sixth day of creation.
#3) The Bible makes it clear that God is the creator of the heaven and the earth in Genesis 1:1 and Isaiah 44:24. But the skeptics do speak well when they argue that the Bible also gives credit to Jesus; for He is (indeed) the Creator. The Bible contains mysteries and riddles whose answers will be revealed to those who truly seek them. The following passages will reveal our Creator to be none other than Jesus.
There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe. He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. John 1:6-10
By him [Jesus] were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him.Colossians 1:16
Jesus indeed made the Heavens and the earth because…(wait for it)…He is God! John John Chapter 1 verses 1-3 and verse 14 all do a great job of revealing our Creator. They reads as follows:
1In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
2The same was in the beginning with God.
3All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
14And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
The Bible also says that this very same “Word” that became Jesus would be called “Wonderful, Councellor, the Mighty God, Everlasting Father” (in Isaiah 9:6)…because He is God! The name Jesus translates to “God saves”. He was also given the name Immanuel meaning “God with us”. Additionally, the Bible refers to Him as the image of the invisible God in Colossians 1:15. So yes. Jesus made the world before He entered the fleshly body and became known by that name. But while He is God, He is also the mediator who reconciled humanity to fellowship with Him.
#4) Creation took six days. The phrase “in the day” is not the same as the phrase “on the day” for the same reasson “In those days” is not the same as “on those days”. The former connotes an era. The latter connotes specific days of the week.
Genesis 2:4 says “These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the LORD God made the earth and the heavens,”. In other words, These are the originations of the Heavens and the earth when they were made. There is no contradiction here, there is simply misconnotation.
#5) Light was divided from darkness on the first day of creation.
God divided the light from the darkness. And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day. – Genesis 1:4-5
…BUT!! Genesis 1:16-19 tells us that on the fourth day,
…God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night … to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good. And the evening and the morning were the fourth day.
Teanslation: On day 1, God Himself called forth light. Think of it as a project lamp or a spot light to shine upon His work in progress, or think of it as the creation of the concept of light. On the fourth day, He created light bearers such as the sun and stars which would reproduce light. Those light sources would not have to be supervised or maintained. Instead, they would operate according to a fixed schedule.
#6) In the skeptics annotated bible, the following concern is presented:
“In the first creation account, plants were created on the third day and humans on the sixth day.”
And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so …. And the evening and the morning were the third day.Genesis 1:11-13
God created plants on the third day, but the skeptics have argued that there is a contradiction between Genesis 1 (which they believe is one creation account) and Genesis 2 (which they believe is a different account). They claim that Genesis 2 suggests God formed humans before (rather than after) forming plant life. They have not read carefully. For reference, here’s the passage of Genesis 2 which they’ve misunderstood.
These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth … And every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and every herb of the field before it grew: for the LORD God had not caused it to rain upon the earth, and there was not a man to till the ground. But there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground. And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground. Genesis 2:4-7
And the LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed. And out of the ground made the LORD God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil.Genesis 2:8-9
God created plants life, which had not yet grown on earth. They were in the form of seeds, which were watered by the sprinkler system God set up before mankind was around to till the earth. There was only one place in which God planted vegetation after He made man…the Garden East of Eden. He did this specifically to bless humankind.
#7) When were the stars made?
On the fourth day of creation, after the earth was made.
In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. Genesis 1:1
He made the stars also. And God set them in the firmament of the heaven…. And the evening and the morning were the fourth day. Genesis 1:16-19
…or was it before the earth was made. Here, skeptics attempt to use Job 38 to demonstrate a contradiction that doesn’t exist.
Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? … When the morning stars sang together.Job 38:4-7
The scriptures must be read with absolute care and attention to detail. Genesis 1:1 says “In the Beginning, God (who existed before time) created the heaven and the earth”. The following verse says “And the earth was without form and void”. Imagine any process of creation whether it’s art or construction. They all begin as formless and void. Drawings start off as indistinguishable scratches made by writing instruments upon a surface. Construction projects begin with the laying of foundations. Now…when we hear “In the beginning” we should immediately think about the six day time frame. God made the stars towards the end of that six day span. He had already laid the foundations of the earth, made the stars also, and set them in the firmament. Mankind had not yet been created. So…when God asks Job “Where were you (Oh little human) when I laid the foundations of the earth?…when the morning stars sang together…” He is not suggesting that He made the stars on any other day than day four. In the beginning, He made the heaven and earth. There were no stars and no form in the earth on day 1 when He first began. However, His question relates to day four when He laid the foundations of the earth and set the stars that He made in the firmament of the heaven. With that said, where was Job when God laid the foundations and when the morning stars (which had been set in the firmament of heaven) sang together? The answer is he wasn’t around.
#8) I can see how the wording of this one might throw many readers off. I can also see how an all-knowing God would test our hearts by making scripture something one has to put some effort into understanding. Those who are not interested in something tend to give up on it quickly. Those who truly seek something continue to turn over stones and shells until their treasure is found.
It is written in Genesis 2:19, “19 And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air…”
That is our answer. He formed every beast and foul out of the ground! 🙂
Genesis 2:19 does not contradict Genesis 1: 20-21 which says, “20And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that has life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven.
It doesn’t say “let the waters create these creatures”; God created everything. The phrase “bring forth abundantly” is translated from the Hebrew word (שָׁרַץ sharats) which means teem or swarm with. Essentially, God was saying “Let the waters swarm with marine life, and birds that may fly above the earth”. This language is specific but misleading if we aren’t careful. The oceans don’t swarm with every type of bird that exists, but there are birds that swarm near, in, and above the waters (bodies of water). Among such birds are sea gulls, ducks, geese, seabirds…etc.
21And God created great sea creatures, and every living thing that moves, which the waters brought forth abundantly (or swarmed with), after their kind, and every winged fowl after its kind: and God saw that it was good.
#9) The animals were also created from earth. Every animal body is biodegradable and upon death nourishes the soil from which it was originally made. There is not a single aspect of our biochemical composition that cannot be composed from elements found in earth or decomposed into elements that nourish the earth.
#10) Mankind was created after animals. Genesis does not contradict itself in ths either.
It is written in Genesis 1:25-26:
25And God made the beasts of the earth after their kinds, and cattle after their kinds, and every thing that creeps upon the earth after its kind: and God saw that it was good.
26And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness
Genesis 2:7 states that God formed man out of the dust of the earth, breathed the breath of life into him and man became a living soul. In my book, “The Serpent’s Lie”, I explain that God “breathed” into us by filling us with what we call our spirit. A human being (or human consciousness) is nothing more than a spirit dwelling in flesh. Our bodies are mechanical exteriors that help us interact with our physical world in specific ways. Genesis 2:7 does NOT contradict Genesis 1:25-26. I do not know why the skeptics included it with the 10th question.
Their inclusion of Genesis 2:18-20, however, provides a good challenge and opportunity to test our reading comprehension. The passage may in fact appear to contradict the animal first then human order of creation. Could they be on to something? Let’s see. Genesis 2:18-20 reads as follows:
18And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him.
19And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was its name.
20And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found a helper suitable for him.
Here’s the explanation. God had created all animals, male and female to reproduce after their own kind. As for humankind, He created Adam first, and knew it was not good for Adam to be alone. Out of the ground, God (had) made the animals, just as he then made Adam and He brought them to Adam to see what he would call them. Adam did not call a single one his lifelong companion. Not one of them was a suitable mate despite the origin they all shared (having been made from the ground). When God made Eve, it was only then Adam that Adam called her his companion saying “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh” – Gen 2:23