Lesson 2

Creation: Forming the World

(Genesis 1, John 1)
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Introduction: Let's assume that you are going out to buy a new car this week. Except for paying for it, that would be a lot of fun, right? Think about what qualities you would like in a new car? What qualities would you avoid? Now consider two new cars. One was created by the finest auto maker who has production and design capabilities which are out of this world. The other is the result of setting off bombs in a junkyard. There is no design or purpose to the explosions. After a lot of explosions, they let it sit around and accumulate stuff until it is fit for you. Which do you choose? The handmade product, or the junkyard product that has been ripening? Let's explore this more as we plunge into our study of creation in the Bible!

  1. Reasonable Doubt


    1. My introduction was in intended to illustrate the conceptual differences between the creation account and the evolutionary theory. Was my illustration fair or not? (I think it is weighted in favor of evolution in two ways. First, we are blowing up stuff that already had an intelligent design. Second, a car is considerably less complex than the least complex animal.)


      1. Evolutionists could say my illustration was flawed because we are not dealing with something that is living. How would that affect this illustration? (To evolve life seems a much greater challenge than to evolve equipment.)


    2. Let's look at another issue. Evolutionists see similar design and function among various types of animals and humans. They argue that this is proof of a common ancestor. What logical counter-argument do you see? (It is proof of an Intelligent Designer. Let's get back to cars. How many wheels could a car have? Because we find that for most circumstances four wheels are best, cars have this common design feature.)


    3. Read Jeremiah 27:4-7 and 2 Peter 3:3-7. What is at issue in both of these texts? (The authority of God.)


      1. Why do you think we are in the middle of a debate over origins? (The authority of God is under attack.)


  2. Light


    1. Read Genesis 1:3-5. What is the first recorded statement of God? ("Let there be light.")


      1. Why do you think God created light first?


      2. Is there a parallel between creation and God recreating our lives?


    2. Read John 1:3-5. Does this text parallel Genesis 1:3-5? (Last week we learned that Jesus was the Creator. When He came into the unformed world He brought forth light. When He came into the formed world as a human He also brought light.)


    3. Look again at Genesis 1:4. What does Jesus say about light that He does not say about darkness? (Light is good.)


      1. Look again at John 1:5. What does this say about darkness? (That it does not understand the light.)


        1. Why would the Bible give a human attribute to darkness -- that darkness thinks? (The point is that light is understanding. Light is revelation. God first brought light into His new creation to give us understanding. Jesus came to our world to give us understanding. Evolutionists say that we are uneducated and do not understand. In fact, recognizing God's authority gives us understanding. It gives light to our life.)


    4. Was this light that was created on the first day the sun? (No. The sun and moon were not created until the fourth day. See Genesis 1:14-19.)


      1. Why would God wait to create the sun and moon? Is that consistent with our discussion of authority and understanding? (Yes. God is our light and our authority. Humans in the past have worshiped the sun. But, the light here is centered on the power and authority of God. God invades darkness and nothingness in both the creation of the universe and the recreation of our life.)


    5. If this light was not our solar system with its rotational pattern, how do we know this first day was a literal twenty-four hours? Many argue that it was not.(Re-read Genesis 1:5. It gives evening and morning as the first day. God specifically tells us that the first day of creation accords with our familiar day/night pattern.)


  3. Sky


    1. Read Genesis 1:6-8. Previously we saw God dividing light from dark. What is He dividing here? (The water from the water. It sounds like He is making a sandwich, water on bottom, expanse (sky) between and water above.)


    2. Notice that the description of God's work varies a bit here. The Bible says that God "said" and He "made" when it comes to separating the water. Genesis 1:3 seems to have light come only by speaking. Am I drawing distinctions that do not exist? Or, is this an important point? (Light is the nature of God. It is fundamental to Him. Our atmosphere, on the other hand, is simply one of His designs.)


      1. Would it be fair to say that light is created whenever God speaks? (This is an interesting idea. God adds light whenever He enters a situation. Why not ask God to enter all of your situations?)


  4. Land and Plants


    1. Read Genesis 1:9-10. In how many places did God collect the seas? ("One place.")


      1. What does this suggest about the nature of our earth then and now? (It suggests things are different. There is a theory, based on the contours of the continents, that at one time before the Flood they were all joined together. The water being in "one place" lends support to that idea.)


    2. Read Genesis 1:11-13. How many plants and trees were created? (The Bible does not say, but it does refer to the various "kinds.")


      1. What does this suggest about the evolutionary idea of things having a common source? (God was the common source for these plants and trees, but God created them with differences. They had no need to evolve the differences.)


      2. What was God's plan for reproduction of the plants and trees? (Seeds. God created them with a reproduction plan.)


      3. Genesis is an ancient document. What does it say to you that plants and trees continue to reproduce today just the way God described it in Genesis? (It gives credence to Genesis and undercuts the idea that we came to exist through another process. What we observe accords with the Genesis account. The Evolutionary Theory asks us to accept something we do not observe.)


    3. Look again at Genesis 1:11. Do immature trees bear fruit? (No. This reveals that God created His new world with an age. Adam and Eve, when we get to them, are not created as babies, they are created as adults. The plants and trees have an age.)


    4. Genesis 1:12 tells us this was "good" and Genesis 1:13 gives us the "evening and morning" sequence. Why do you think that the Genesis account adds those details? ("Good" tells us that God was satisfied. This was not something that needed time and space to evolve into something appropriate. The evening and morning statement gives us a time-marker. God created this in a day and He did it according to His specifications.)


    5. Read Job 38:4-7. To what does God compare His creation of the earth? (To creating a building.)


      1. This not only reveals an intelligent design, but these verses give us further insight into the creation. Was creating the earth just another task God checked off on His "to do" list?(No! This is a great public event. It is a wonderful celebration of joy among heavenly beings.)


      2. When we learn that heaven had a party to celebrate our creation, what does that tell you about heaven's attitude towards us? (They care about us. They love us. They are rooting for us.)


    6. Friend, how about you? Would you rather be the product of junkyard explosions, or the result of a much anticipated unveiling of God's design and production plan? Would you rather be the result of an unthinking process, or a celebrated event by the most sophisticated intelligence of the universe?


  5. Next week: The Creation Completed.

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