The First Book of Moses, Called Genesis

Chapter 1

God creates heaven and earth, 1; the light, 3; the firmament, 6; separates the dry land, 9; forms the sun, moon, and stars, 14; fish and birds, 20; cattle, wild beasts, and creeping things, 24; creates man in his own image, blesses him, 26; grants the fruits of the earth for food, 29.

1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. 2 And the earth was without form and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. 3 And God said, "Let there be light," and there was light. 4 And God saw the light, that it was good, and God divided the light from the darkness. 5 And God called the light, Day, and the darkness he called, Night, and the evening and the morning were the first day.

6 And God said, "Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters." 7 And God made the firmament and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament. And it was so. 8 And God called the firmament, Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day.

9 And God said, "Let the waters under the heaven be gathered into one place, and let the dry land appear." And it was so. 10 And God called the dry land, Earth, and the collection of waters he called, Seas. And God saw that it was good. 11 And God said, "Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit-tree yielding fruit after its kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth." And it was so. 12 And the earth brought forth grass, herbs yielding seed after its kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after its kind. And God saw that it was good. 13 And the evening and the morning were the third day.

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, for seasons, for days, and years. 15 And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth." And it was so. 16 And God made two great lights: the greater light to rule the day and the lesser light to rule the night. He also made the stars. 17 And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth, 18 To rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness. And God saw that it was good. 19 And the evening and the morning were the fourth day.

20 And God said, "Let the waters abundantly bring forth the moving creature that has life and the bird that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven." 21 And God created the great sea-creatures and every living creature that moves, which the waters brought forth abundantly after their kind, and every winged bird after his kind. And God saw that it was good. 22 And God blessed them, saying, "Be fruitful, multiply, fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply in the earth." 23 And the evening and the morning were the fifth day.

24 And God said, "Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind: cattle, the creeping animal, and the beast of the earth after his kind." And it was so. 25 And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, cattle after their kind, and every animal that creeps upon the earth after his kind. And God saw that it was good.

26 And God said, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness, and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, over the cattle, over all the earth, and over every creeping animal that creeps upon the earth." 27 So God created man in his own image. In the image of God he created him: male and female he created them. 28 And God blessed them, and God said to them, "Be fruitful, multiply, replenish the earth, and subdue it. And have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the bird of the air, and over every living animal that moves upon the earth." 29 And God said, "Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed. To you it shall be for food. 30 And to every beast of the earth, to every bird of the air, and to every animal that creeps upon the earth, in which is life, I have given every green herb for food." And it was so. 31 And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

Commentary

Matthew Henry Commentary - Genesis, Chapter 1

Notes

[v.1] - "In the beginning" - A beginning is that which is first, the first state, a commencement, or an entrance into being. In this, we have to understand that even before this beginning, that is, the beginning of the heavens and the earth, God existed. He existed before the first state of the universe. In fact, He was the first cause of the universe. This was an argument for God's existence made by Thomas Aquinas. He argued that God must have existed because everything must have a first cause. Tracing each cause back in time cannot go to infinity; therefore, the first cause of everything must begin with an infinite being, namely, God. If the former causes of a last cause spanned back to infinity, the last cause would not occur because infinity has no end. God had to be the one to initiate, or commence, the beginning of the causes.

[v.3] - "Let there be light" - Latin: "Fiat lux" - When God created the light He established one form of His common grace. Common grace is a term used to describe the blessings God bestows upon every person on Earth, whether a believer or not. Such blessings include, but are not limited to, sunlight and its many benefits, air to breathe, and rain for water. In Matthew 5:45, Christ spoke of this common grace by saying, "...For he makes his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust."

[v.5] - "the first day" - The Bible is unclear whether the word, "day," is referring to a 24-hour period or a certain period of time. In fact, the Hebrew word for day used here is equally unclear. The word is, יוֹם, or yom, which means, "to be hot; a day (as the warm hours), whether literal (from sunrise to sunset, or from one sunset to the next), or figurative (a space of time defined by an associated term)." The usage of this word throughout the Scriptures (literally hundreds of times) supports both definitions.

[v.6-8] - Reference, Psalm 33:6.

[v.14] - "let them be for signs" - We can see in Matthew 2:2 that it was a star, which was a sign such as in this verse, that indicated to the wise men that the king of the Jews had been born. This king of the Jews we know to be Jesus Christ.

[v.26-27] - See also, Genesis 2:7.

[v.27] - Quoted in Matthew 19:4; Mark 10:6.

[v.31] - "everything that he had made" - There was one thing God did not create: an adversary. God has no opponent because He cannot be equaled. You will see Satan come along later in Genesis, ch. 3. Even though Satan was created by God and is referred to as, "the enemy" (Matthew 13:39; Luke 10:19—as "adversary," 1st Peter 5:8), he is a subject of God and therefore, must obey the will of God. This is demonstrated in the first and second chapters of Job. Rather than being God's enemy, Satan is the enemy of God's elect, or the Church.

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