GENESIS 1: GOD CREATES A GOOD CREATION IN LOVE
In the 2017 movie, “Hidden Figures" African American women Mary Jackson, Katherine Johnson, and Dorothy Vaughan calculate trajectory of lunar rockets. If vector’s off, you miss the moon.
Same with God’s story. Get the vector off and you will miss God.
Huh? Put it this way: some of us read Creation story naïvely — kid’s story, right? Others ply the story for answers to questions of evolution or paleontology. Genesis 1-2 wasn’t written to answer Darwinism but assumes God created the world without contest, matter, explosion, or other gods to help.
We often ask “How?” questions. Original hearers had different questions from “How long ago? Big Bang?” Maybe one was, “Which god really did create the world?”
WHO WAS MARDUK?
Ancient Babylonians thought the creator was god Marduk. Marduk invents tornadoes and other natural forces to defeat god Tiamat. He defeats Kingu and uses the blood to create humans so they can serve, and gods can be at leisure.
Ancients may have asked, “What’s this god Elohim like?” Genesis 1-2 says the creator is Yahweh Elohim, the Lord God. There are vital differences in Ancient Near East origin stories and Genesis 1-2.
The God of Israel creates from nothing, no contest with other gods, and he doesn’t make humans so he can be at leisure but — listen to this — He enters creation to be present with us. God creates then enters the scene! And he is going to do this in each act of the drama.
God in loving self-emptying Community — Father, Son, Holy Spirit — wants to expand the circle of fellowship to creation.
In the beginning, God created the universe. The earth was not organized, and it was without structure. Darkness covered the deep like a blanket. God’s spirit was hovering over the surface of the water. (Genesis 1:1-2)
The Hebrew way to describe darkness is, “Tohu Wa Bohu.” God created out of this nothing by brooding over the formless waters like a bird on the nest. God’s breath or in Hebrew, Ruach, or Spirit is present in the world from the way beginning of earth time. Then God speaks and all is created by his command. Light, sun, moon, stars, water, land, animals, plants, and humans.
Greg Taylor preaches for THE JOURNEY: A NEW GENERATION CHURCH OF CHRIST. Greg's wife, Jill, teaches math at Broken Arrow High School and Tulsa Community College. Greg and Jill have three adult children, Ashley, Anna, and Jacob. Greg is the author of many books, including his latest co-authored with Randy Harris, Daring Faith: Meeting Jesus in the Book of John.