Monday, January 14, 2013

Lesson Study The Creation Completed

Posted: 11 Jan 2013 06:00 AM PST
Read for This Week’s StudyGenesis 1, Ps. 8:3Rom. 8:19-22Lev. 11:14-22, Gen. 2:1-3,Mark 2:28.
gless03Memory Text: “By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work” Genesis 2:2, NIV).
This week’s lesson reviews the Bible’s brief description of the last three Creation days and the Sabbath rest. This description is found in Genesis 1-2:1-3, but numerous references to it exist in other parts of Scripture. One of the most striking aspects of the Creation account is its division into days of Creation. Why did He choose to make the seven-day time cycle that we call a week? Scripture does not tell us directly, but we can look for clues. Perhaps the most important clue is the Sabbath itself, which reserves a special time for communion between God and humanity. It may be that God established the week to provide a period of time suitable for ordinary work, yet with a regular period of time set aside as a reminder of our relationship to God (see Mark 2:28). This would help humans to remember that God is the true provider and that we are totally dependent upon Him. Whatever the reason, it is apparent that the Genesis Creation account reveals a Creation done with exceeding care and purpose. Nothing is left to chance.
Study this week’s lesson to prepare for Sabbath, January 19.
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Posted: 12 Jan 2013 06:00 AM PST
Read Genesis 1:14-19. What actions are mentioned on the fourth day of
Creation? How are we to make sense of this, especially given our present understanding of the physical world?
The fourth day has probably been discussed more than any of the other six Creation days. If the sun was created on the fourth day, what caused the daily cycles for the first three Creation days? On the other hand, if the sun already existed, what happened on the fourth day?
Uncertainty over the events of the fourth day of Creation does not arise from a logical contradiction but from a plurality of possibilities. One possibility is that the sun was created on the fourth day, and the light for the first three days came from God’s presence or from another source such as a supernova. Revelation 21:23 is consistent with this idea, as the sun is not needed in the heavenly city because God is there. A second possibility is that the sun, moon, and stars were appointed their functions at that time. Psalm 8:3 seems consistent with this view. Hebrew scholar C. John Collins writes that the Hebrew wording of Genesis 1:14 may allow either of these two possibilities. (See C. John Collins, Genesis 1-4: A Linguistic, Literary, and Theological Commentary [Phillipsburg, New Jersey: P&R Publishing Co., 2006], p. 57.)
A third possibility is that the sun was already in existence but was obscured by clouds or volcanic dust and was not visible or fully functional until the fourth day. One can compare this possibility with the planet Venus, where a similar situation occurs today.
The text does not seem clearly to endorse or rule out any of these interpretations, although this does not deter strong opinions on the topic. It is probably a good rule not to give a question more significance than the Bible gives it, and we ought to acknowledge that our understanding is limited. This acknowledgment, especially in the area of creation, shouldn’t be that hard to accept. After all, think about how many scientific mysteries exist at present; that is, they are right here for experimental science to investigate and yet still remain mysteries. How much more mysterious is something hidden so far in the past?

4 comment(s) for this post:

  1. Angel D.:
    12 Jan 2013 It seems apparent to me that there was light when God spoke the words "Let there be light". Where it came from is debatable. It may have illuminated from the glory of God, or it may have illuminated from Heaven (streets of gold and all of the other jewels, etc.....). But the lights created on the 4th day were created especially to serve all of the stated functions in Gen. 1:14-19.
  2. Carrol Lindsay:
    12 Jan 2013 Humans need to stop being so afraid of things we cannot explain. We were created and so was the earth.
  3. Harold Gotting:
    12 Jan 2013 On Sunday, the statement "One possibility is that the sun was created on the fourth day, and the light for the first three days came from God’s presence" raises a question. We know that, God is light, 1 John 1:5, therefore, we can be sure that God's presence was not the "light" that he spoke into existence, or He would not have commanded "let there be light" because He already is.
  4. Agbara Chinwendu:
    12 Jan 2013 The passion to be in heaven gets stronger. The desire to see our God wax stronger by limitations we acknowledge in our understanding about the mystery of creation. God would be there to difuse our assumptions and provide us with the true interpretation of Gen 1:14-19. Find time to be in heaven

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