God Did All This

Acts 17

May 5

Paul starts out in Acts chapter 17 arriving in Thessalonica and speaking in the synagogues for 3 Sabbaths. He proclaims that Jesus needed to suffer and be raised from the dead. The Jews corner Paul and he is forced to leave the city after paying the officials. Paul and Silas depart for Berea. The Berean Jews listen to him and study to see if what he is saying is true and many of them believed. The Jews from Thessalonica find out Paul is in Berea and come after him there.

Paul is immediately sent away by the brothers in Berea and Paul arrives in Athens. Paul doesn’t take a break while in Athens. Paul seeing the city full of idols almost can’t help himself. Paul starts going into the marketplace and reasoning with the Jews in the synagogue and preaching to them about Jesus resurrected. They bring Paul to the Areopagus, a court of philosophy, and Paul launches into one of the most cultured speeches or sermons in the New Testament.

Paul starts out with the general declaration that God has made everything in v.24. God doesn’t live in a temple, made of human hands. He instead dwells within all of us. This is in abstraction to all the gods of Athens who needed a temple, a place for them to dwell. Our God when a house is built for him it was only supposed to represent God’s presence with his nation, Israel. It was a symbol for his people.

Paul makes his third statement about God’s sovereignty in v. 25. He doesn’t need us to serve him. For there is nothing that he needs from us that he can’t do for himself.  He instead involves us and allows us to serve him for our own good. Our service to God is a matter of grace from God to us. It is letting us love him back. We are like children using the money mommy gave us to buy something for daddy.

Paul then makes a statement about the whole world’s dependence on God. He says that God gives to us life, breath and everything. Life: many of you may think of this as coming from your mom and dad; but as at least some of you may know, pregnancy is a miracle in and of itself. Either way God gave you your life. Have you had any enjoyment in it? Praise God because he gave it to you. Breath: God has provided you the air in your lungs right now and all the air you have ever used. He gave you the air you used to praise him and the air you used to sin against him. Everything: Everything you have ever interacted with – like that piece of cake or your mama. He made all that as well.

Verse 26 says that God providentially gave to each a time and a place. Verse 27 Tells us exactly why he did this. He gave us our time, place, life, breath, and everything that we have and everyone we love that we would SEEK Him and FIND Him. This statement is so significant if we look at it from Paul’s audience’s perspective. God made everything and gave everything, that we would find Him. He did it, so it would point us to Him.

The good things that he gives to non-Christians and the good things he gave to us, when we didn’t love him, were all done for us that we would seek and find Him.

We are going to skip down to verse 30. Paul tells us he has overlooked our ignorance and is telling them to repent and that he will judge the world by a righteous man. Paul then says that we have assurance of this because Christ was raised from the dead.

This is the third time in this chapter Paul talks about Christ’s resurrection. Christ’s resurrection is paramount to the Christian faith. If Christ isn’t raised we have nothing. His resurrection gives us Christ in us and God in Christ and therefore God in all of us. By his resurrection, not just his death, we are justified (Romans 4.25).

-Daniel Wall

Questions for Reflection and Discussion

  1. How can you be more mindful of all that God has made and done for you today?
  2. How will you seek Him?
  3. Who do you know who still needs to hear about and know the “unknown God”? How can you introduce them?
  4. What does Christ’s resurrection mean to you?

In the Beginning

Genesis 1

January 29

How one starts a story has quite a lot to do with how the rest of the story plays out. 

Once upon a time…

A Long Time Ago in a Galaxy Far, Far Away…

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. 

It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.

And my personal favorite in fiction:

Mr. and Mrs. Dursley, of number four, Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much.

Today we start the story of creation, and the first four words tell us quite a lot. 

In the beginning God…

Anything and everything that comes next depends on this text and, as such, these words are fascinating. 

Apologetics is an art form and a science. Apologetics means, simply, “defending ones faith,” and so Christian Apologetics is about giving reasons for why we believe anything we believe. Why do we believe the Bible is the word of God? Why do we believe Jesus is the Son of God and Messiah? Why do we believe God exists at all? These are good questions and it’s important that you have general answers to them. 

But Genesis 1:1 doesn’t answer them. Genesis 1:1 assumed God is. There is no argument for or against him. There is no argument about other gods or goddesses, about how this book is his word versus other books that say conflicting things, nor does it defend the “contradictions”that some non-believers point out in the text. 

Genesis 1:1 just says “God created.” Simple. Easy. Plain. 

But of course, it is anything but simple and easy and plain. 

I could spend quite some time talking about my own interactions with the text, trying to understand it and science at the same time. I could work to show you whether this text is poetry or narrative and how the text in chapter 1 relates to the order of creation in chapter 2. I could tell you that through strong but loving conversations with important people I have worked out the perfect explanation to the text. I could tell you exactly how you should read this text, end of story, done, nice and easy. 

I could tell you that, but I won’t. 

My own interactions with the text have been difficult. 

People smarter than me read this text literally verbatim as the God’s-eye view of what happened in Genesis. Other people, still smarter than I, say “it’s a metaphor and symbolical account of creation and we need to understand how to read this literately.”

I have come to some strong conclusions but truthfully I hold them loosely because I know what a struggle it was to get to where I am, and I could change tomorrow. 

The only thing I can tell you with certainty is that this text tells us with all seriousness that God is not a distant observer of space-time, nor one and same with the universe, but a powerful mover-and-shaper of all things by the word of his mouth. 

And because the story starts this way, it changes how the rest of the story plays out. God makes light and calls it good, and the metaphor of light is good in the rest of Scripture. God calls for the earth to bring forth plants. He invites creation to participate with him in the creative act, it would seem. God makes the creatures of the ocean, from the great “tanninim”, which could be interpreted as sea monsters, whales, or dragons, worshipped by other cultures. God creates with his mouth the very things that others worship, because all things exist due to his will. 

Speaking of the will of God for creation, that brings us to the most important part of Genesis 1 in our reading today. 

Humanity is part of but also the fulfillment of creation. God not only makes us, but he makes us in his image. He not only invites us to participate in the creative act, but even invites, empowers, and also demands that we rule over creation. And this is not one man given this role, but humanity, the many as both male and female. We ALL are made in the image of God.

Whatever we think about Genesis 1, what we learn is that humanity is made in the image of God, meaning we have value and worth given by God which cannot be taken away. We learn that God created so that there would be a people who would love him, as Genesis functions are the precursor to the central story of the Old Testament, the Exodus. And we learn that when God looks at his creation, with humans in the midst of a world he lovingly called into being, he says it is 

“Very Good.”

-Jake Ballard

Questions for Reflection and Discussion

  1. How do you interpret Genesis One? I encourage you to accept church tradition/theology and challenge church tradition/theology, to accept scientific discoveries and challenge scientific discoveries. In both “church” and “science”, we find truth. But, we need to balance truth with wisdom, and see that much that comes from both “church” and “science” are interpretations and value judgments, rather than simple, plain truths. How will you continually seek to understand God’s word? Who do you turn to listen to about church tradition, theology, science and how to interpret each of those factors?
  2. Even though Genesis One assumes the existence of God, and doesn’t try to argue for him but just proves him via his actions with his people, how do you answer the questions presented above? : “Why do we believe the Bible is the word of God? Why do we believe Jesus is the Son of God and Messiah? Why do we believe God exists at all?” What is your answer for your friend who might ask you any one of these questions. If you don’t have a ready answer, then are you “prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have”?(1 Peter 3:15)
  3. Too often we are told that humanity and all life is a cosmic accident brought about by the random chance of amino acids bursting forth into life in a hot pool of water millions of years ago (a bad interpretation of science, see above). However, this is not true. You are not a cosmic accident, but the keystone of God’s creative act. How does it make you feel that you are part of the final creation of God in Genesis One? Do you believe that God made this world and then declared that it is all very good? How can you honor the role to rule over creation that God has given you and how might you enjoy the very good creation of God this week?

Genesis 1 – Made in God’s Image

This Week’s Devotion Theme: God Created!

Today’s Bible Reading: Genesis 11-12 and Matthew 6

The final piece in God’s creation, on day 6, is humankind.  Man stands out in all of creation, having been made in God’s own image.

Genesis 1:26-28 – Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”

27 So God created mankind in his own image,
    in the image of God he created them;
    male and female he created them.

28 God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”

Adam and Eve were the first humans, as recorded in Genesis and other places such as in Timothy 2:13 – For Adam was formed first, then Eve.  Adam is mentioned quite a few times throughout scripture, including in the genealogy of Jesus in Luke chapter 3.  But there are many Christians who question if Adam and Eve were even real people.  Why?  Primarily because of Darwinian Evolution.  If Darwinian Evolution is true, then there really were no exact pair of first humans per se, because humans would have evolved slowly from an ape-like ancestor.  For Christians who believe Darwinian Evolution to be true, it has led some to question how there could have been an actual Adam and Eve in that scenario.

But Darwinian Evolution is not possible, as I shared in yesterday’s devotion, and so there is no reason to try to explain away all of the references to Adam in scripture.  Doing so creates the need to start discounting the veracity of a lot of scripture.  Another reason to toss the idea that man evolved is that if you allowed one random step in evolution to occur every hour on the hour (much, much faster than evolutionists suggest it happens), it would take around 6.8 billion years for man to evolve from a single cell, which is too much time, even given the incorrect ancient age of the earth.

The supposed evolution of humans is full of a history of hoaxes, exaggerations, and errors.  For example, you may have heard it reported that humans and chimpanzees have anywhere from 95% to 99% genetic similarity, as this image from the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History claims.

  This is intended to support the idea that humans and chimps share a common ancestor.  But the truth is that that percentage is arrived upon because researchers only compared the most similar sections of the genomes.  But if you compare the entire genomes, it is more akin to a 70% similarity.  And still, there are over 900 million DNA differences that divide humans and chimps!  This is known to be true, but misleading information that states otherwise still appears in museums and in textbooks today.  No wonder so many Christians believe it. 

“There is no encompassing theory of human evolution,” concedes Berkeley evolutionary biologist F. Clark Howell.  “Alas, there never really has been.”

Is there any evidence that points to an actual Adam or Eve?  Yes!  Using comparisons of mitochondrial DNA, which is only passed on from the mother, creation scientists, and many secular scientists agree that evidence indicates all humans are descended from a single pair of humans that lived in the relatively recent past.  (This study was published in the journal Human Evolution in May 2018.)

Another recent study published in Science Magazine (337, p.64-69) suggests that humans haven’t been around very long.  Regarding human genetic diversity, the study concluded, “The maximum likelihood time for accelerated growth was 5,115 years ago.”  This time frame aligns rather closely with scripture, and specifically the time that Adam would have been created.

It is exciting for me to see that real world observation continually confirms the Bible.  As more and more Christians learn these truths, I hope it leads to an abandonment of attempts to throw out or twist sections of scripture that are not compatible with some scientific claims.  In regards to human evolution, you should feel confident that you did not evolve from an ape-like ancestor.  You were specially designed, created in the image of God, just as Adam was, in the beginning.  Jesus confirmed as much in Matthew 18:4 when he said, “at the beginning, the creator made them (Adam and Eve) male and female.”

-Greg Landry

If anyone has any questions or comments they would like me to address on any of the devotions dealing with creation this week, please reach out to me at gregrlandry@gmail.com

Editor: Do you know someone who could benefit from reading today’s devotion? Pass it on. I believe it could really save a life – an eternal life! Evolution has been used to distort God’s truth and lead youth and adults to question God’s existence, power, and love. It’s time to fight back. And how encouraging to know that Science Really IS on God’s side!

And, keep going on your daily Bible reading. Lots of good stuff in Genesis and Matthew!

Genesis 1 – According to their Kinds

This Week’s Devotion Theme: God Created!

Today’s Bible reading: Genesis 9-10 and Matthew 5

One of the great questions in life is, “How did I get here?”  Job 33:4 says, “The Spirit of God has made me, and the breath of the Almighty gives me life.” As Christians, we believe we were created by God, with a purpose.  But so many in this world believe that they are a result of random processes, believing they are essentially an accident, and thus there is no greater purpose to their existence. 

According to the Bible, during the creation week, not only did God create the heavenly bodies and the planet we live on, He also populated this planet with life.

Genesis 1:9-13 – And God said, “Let the water under the sky be gathered to one place, and let dry ground appear.” And it was so. 10 God called the dry ground “land,” and the gathered waters he called “seas.” And God saw that it was good.

11 Then God said, “Let the land produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds.” And it was so. 12 The land produced vegetation: plants bearing seed according to their kinds and trees bearing fruit with seed in it according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good. 13 And there was evening, and there was morning—the third day.

Then, in Genesis 1:20-25 – And God said, “Let the water teem with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the vault of the sky.” 21 So God created the great creatures of the sea and every living thing with which the water teems and that moves about in it, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. 22 God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the water in the seas, and let the birds increase on the earth.” 23 And there was evening, and there was morning—the fifth day.

24 And God said, “Let the land produce living creatures according to their kinds: the livestock, the creatures that move along the ground, and the wild animals, each according to its kind.” And it was so. 25 God made the wild animals according to their kinds, the livestock according to their kinds, and all the creatures that move along the ground according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good.

Note that the Bible says that God created plants, sea creatures, land creatures and flying creatures, at the beginning, according to their kinds. In other words, the various types of animals such as elephants, big cats and whales were there from the beginning.  Many scientists instead believe in Darwinian Evolution, an alternate explanation of how life came to exist on the Earth.

That is the worldview that results in people believing they are merely accidents and serve no purpose.  But which explanation is actually supported by what we observe in nature?  Can we trust how scripture says it happened?

The key idea in Darwinian Evolution is that all life that has ever existed descended from a relatively simple common ancestor, and became more complex over time, branching into different kinds of life as a result of random mutations.  Although this idea is widely accepted within scientific circles, thankfully, more and more scientists are questioning its validity.  There is a group called Dissent from Darwin, that lists over a thousand professors and scientists that do not believe the claims made by the Darwinian theory are valid. https://dissentfromdarwin.org

The problems with Darwinian Evolution are many.  Perhaps the biggest problem for evolution is that random mutations are not capable of adding new features to an organism ultimately leading up to a different type of organism altogether.  In lab settings, scientists have intentionally introduced mutations into thousands of generations of fruit flies, and have observed that the mutations only lead to inferior fruit flies.  Not better fruit flies or different kinds of flies altogether.  Mutations NEVER, under any circumstances, add information.  They only scramble up whatever information is already there, or instead, there is a loss of information.  Even if mutations were able to add new information, it is mathematically impossible for mutations to account for the vast variety of life on Earth, even if the Earth was much older than the ancient age some scientists believe it is.

Secondly, all that has ever been observed are small changes within an animal or plant kind, not changes that have ever led to a different animal or plant kind.  Yes, sometimes we can observe changes in a type of fish, for example, that some scientists then label as a new species.  But those changes have never been observed to lead that fish to turn into a non-fish.  

Finally, there is no record of evolution in the fossil record due to a complete lack of transitional fossils (fossils that clearly show a transition from one animal kind to another) that even evolutionists can agree on. 

On the other hand, real world observation shows that living organisms are far too complex to have evolved due to random chance.  Not only are the systems that make up your own body, such as the circulatory system, nervous system and so forth unimaginably complex, they are irreducibly complex.  That means, that these systems could not have evolved slowly over time because the entire system had to be in place from day one, or else it would not work.  Not only does the entire system need to be in place, but the various systems are interdependent, and so they had to all be there together from day one as well.  What good is a circulatory system if there is no respiratory system?  What good is a skeletal system if there is no muscular system?  What good is any system if there is not reproductive system?

As complex as any system is, the individual cells that make up the parts of the system are even more complex.  Cells function as tiny cities that work off of a set of blue prints to know what to do at any given time.  The blue prints are the DNA in the nucleus of the cell.  But if cells came about through evolution, did the nucleus of the cell evolve first, or did the DNA contained within the nucleus, which has the instructions of how to build not only the nucleus, but the entire cell, evolve first?  You see, again, everything had to be there together that first time, or it just doesn’t work.

What we actually observe around us fully supports the Biblical account of creation in that God created the different forms of life fully formed from the beginning, according to their kinds.  At the same time, what we observe leaves no possibility for Darwinian Evolution.

-Greg Landry

If anyone has any questions or comments they would like me to address on any of the devotions dealing with creation this week, please reach out to me at gregrlandry@gmail.com

Editor: Thank you for reading with us this week as Greg shares on his study of creation. We have an amazing God!

Genesis 1 – The Heavenly Bodies

This Week’s Devotion Theme: God Created!

Today’s Bible reading: Genesis 7-8 and Matthew 4

Have you ever been in an outdoor area away from city lights and marveled at the starry night sky?  If not, what are you waiting for?  The beauty and sheer number of the stars and other heavenly bodies in the night sky are simply amazing.  About 3,000 stars are visible to the naked eye on a clear, moonless night, but it is estimated that there are about 100 billion stars in just our galaxy alone.  It is estimated that there are about 10 billion trillion stars in the universe.  That is 10,000,000,000,000,000,000,000.  That’s a lot of stars.  And if you ever want to feel truly insignificant, search for a video that compares the size of our closest star, the sun, to Earth and  to the other stars.  But then, while feeling truly insignificant, remember that the same God who created all of those stars also created you and loves you! 

How do we know God created the heavenly bodies?

Genesis 1:14-19 – And God said, “Let there be lights in the vault of the sky to separate the day from the night, and let them serve as signs to mark sacred times, and days and years, 15 and let them be lights in the vault of the sky to give light on the earth.” And it was so. 16 God made two great lights—the greater light to govern the day and the lesser light to govern the night. He also made the stars. 17 God set them in the vault of the sky to give light on the earth, 18 to govern the day and the night, and to separate light from darkness. And God saw that it was good. 19 And there was evening, and there was morning—the fourth day.

Isaiah 45:12 – I made the earth and created man on it; it was my hands that stretched out the heavens, and I commanded all their host.

Psalm 33:6 – By the word of the Lord the heavens were made, and by the breath of his mouth all their host.

Scripture seems pretty clear about this.  But you may have heard about something called The Big Bang Theory.  No, not the television show.  The Big Bang Theory claims that the universe came into being about 13.8 billion years ago with an explosion, all on its own, for no reason at all.  Though it is tempting to take the angle that the theory is essentially attempting to scientifically describe what God created, that is not the real intent of the theory.  It is an attempt to explain how the universe came into being, without the hand of a Creator God.

“Spontaneous creation is the reason there is something rather than nothing, why the Universe exists, why we exist.  It is not necessary to invoke God to…set the Universe going.”Stephen Hawking.

It is understandable that some scientists would not invoke a Creator or the miraculous nature of the creation of the universe in their explanation of the origin of the universe.  And yet, there is no choice but to invoke miracles as part of an explanation of how something can come from nothing, as is the case with the Big Bang Theory.

  “[The big bang] represents instantaneous suspension of physical laws, the sudden abrupt flash of lawlessness that allowed something to come out of nothing.  It represents a true miracle…” – Paul Davies – physicist and evolutionistThe Edge of Infinity.

Keep quotes like these in mind when defending your faith.  Whether it is the universe starting from “spontaneous creation” or life starting from non-life, scientists will often rely on miracles to try to explain the world around us.  We as believers certainly accept miracles, but the difference is, we also believe in a Miracle-maker.  

Other than the Big Bang Theory not allowing for a Creator, the theory also does not fit with the creation account in Genesis because the creation account says that the earth was created before the stars, whereas the Big Bang theory claims the opposite.

The Big Bang Theory is truly not compatible with scripture, but moreover, it is now a crumbling theory, scientifically, as well.

There are numerous problems with the theory as it stands today.  Many things that we observe in the universe around us, both near and far, are simply impossible if the universe started with an explosion billions of years ago.

Without going into multiple explanations, a few of the problems include:

  1. We should find magnetic monopoles, but we don’t.
  2. There should be equal amounts matter and anti-matter, but it’s not even close.
  3. Only about 7,000 years worth of supernovas have been discovered.
  4. Distant galaxies appear far too young.
  5. Galaxies as we know them shouldn’t even exist.
  6. There are millions of years of missing collisions.
  7. The echo for the Big Bang is missing.
  8. Dark matter and dark energy are needed for the Big Bang model, but there is no evidence that either exists.
  9. Mercury shouldn’t be dense, but it is.  And it shouldn’t still have a magnetic field, but it does.
  10. The surface of Venus is too young, and it should not be rotating sideways or have a magnetic field.
  11. The Earth shouldn’t have any water, and its magnetic field is too young.
  12. Stars shouldn’t exist.
  13. Our moon’s origin and geologic activity are unexplainable.
  14. Saturn’s magnetic field shouldn’t be there.
  15. Neptune appears too young and shouldn’t even exist.
  16. Uranus should not still have a magnetic field and gives off too much energy.
  17. Jupiter also still gives off too much energy.
  18. Comets should no longer exist.

“Big Bang cosmology is probably as widely believed as has been any theory of the universe in the history of Western civilization.  It rests, however, on many untested, and in some cases untestable assumptions.  Indeed, big bang cosmology has become a bandwagon of thought that reflects faith as much as objective truth.” – G. Burbridge, Why only one big bang? Scientific American, 266 (2):96.

Either the universe started on its own, breaking multiple laws of physics in the process, and somehow resulted in many phenomena that indicate it didn’t begin as they say, billions of years ago, or our amazing God created all the stars and heavenly bodies that we see in the beautiful night sky just as scripture tells us.

-Greg Landry

If anyone has any questions or comments they would like me to address on any of the devotions dealing with creation this week, please reach out to me at gregrlandry@gmail.com

SeekGrowLove Editor: We thank Greg for tackling the job of discussing creation and the Bible during our devotions this week. Too often Godly kids have turned away from the truths of Scripture when faced with “smart” college professors teaching evolution. Greg has studied much and presents the truth of Scripture as well as the errors and inconsistencies of evolution. So, this week we offer a deeper look at creation than could be covered in one day of devotions. Dig in with us – and keep reading from the Bible reading plan as well. Print your copy below and mark off those passages as you go. God bless your journey with Him – from beginning to end!

Genesis 1 – In the Beginning

This Week’s Devotion Theme: God Created!

Today’s Bible Reading: Genesis 5-6 and Matthew 3

Last month, I did a devotion on Romans chapters 1-3, where I discussed the fact that we do not have a blind faith, owing in part to the abundance of evidence all around us that there is indeed a creator.  The key verses were Romans 1:18-20 – The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.

To kick off the SeekGrowLove Devotion’s new topic-based option, what better place to start the new year than the book of Genesis?  For those that enjoyed the creation devotion from Romans last month, I hope you will be glad to learn that creation will be the daily devotion topic throughout this week.  Let’s start at the very beginning:

Genesis 1:1-5 – In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.

And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day.

There is a lot of disagreement, among Christians in particular, whether the six days of creation were actual 24 hour periods, or longer periods.  Why is that?  I believe it’s because if you do a little study, taking the genealogies found in Genesis chapters 5 and 11, which indicate there was approximately 2,000 years between Adam and Abraham (and archaeological evidence indicates Abraham lived about 2,000 B.C.), you would discover that scripture points to the Earth being relatively young.  That is, if you agree that the Creation week which ended with the creation of Adam was a literal week, instead of a much longer period of time.

But of course that young earth idea flies in the face of what many scientists believe (and many, perhaps most, Christians have adopted as well), namely that the earth is billions of years old.  Thus, there are many theories on how one should understand Genesis chapters 1 and 2, given the widely accepted age of the Earth.  One theory is that the word day in Genesis doesn’t actually mean a 24 hour period.  It has been suggested that day in Genesis represents a much longer time period.  But we should dig a bit deeper into the original language of Genesis to get a better understanding of what was meant by the word day, when used in phrases like “the first day.”

The Hebrew word for day in Genesis is yom.  It can have several meanings (much like our own word for day) – a period of time, a specific period of time, a year, the time of day when it is light out, and a 24 hour period of time.  However, the Hebrew yom is used with a number (such as the first day) 359 times in the Old Testament outside of Genesis 1, and every single time, it is clear that it means a 24 hour period.  Genesis is the only place where the meaning of yom is questioned.

There are other Hebrew words that mean time or an indefinite period, but they were not used.  The only Hebrew word that can represent a 24 hour period is the one that was used in Genesis to describe the creation days.  I don’t believe that was an accident.

Another theory, known as the gap theory, is that the Earth appears old because God created the Earth, as described in Genesis 1:1, then paused a very long time, before continuing with the rest of creation, beginning as described in Genesis 1:2.  But there is a verse outside of Genesis that sheds heavy doubt on that theory. 

Exodus 20:8-11 – Remember the Sabbath by keeping it holy.  …For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day.  Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.

If, as this passage says, God created the Earth (as it says in Genesis 1:1) AND everything in it in six days, then clearly there is no possibility of a gap as the gap theory posits.  Furthermore, when the plural form of yom, yamim, is used, as it is over 700 times in the Old Testament, including here in Exodus, it always means a literal 24 hour period.

Isaiah 45:18 – For thus says the Lord, who created the heavens (he is God!), who formed the earth and made it (he established it; he did not create it empty, he formed it to be inhabited!): “I am the Lord, and there is no other.   Again, scripture outside of Genesis indicates that the Earth was designed to be inhabited from the beginning, not to remain empty for any long period, before life was added.

Additionally, the word remember in Hebrew, when used as a command, as it is in Exodus 20:8, always refers back to a real historical event.  This is especially important because there are multiple theories out there that the creation account is simply a myth or a metaphor.

I believe that when you take the entirety of scripture into account, it clearly supports that the creation week was a historical event, and took 6 literal 24 hour days to complete.

But what about the evidence that the Earth appears very old?  After all, without this idea, I doubt that people would actually question the veracity of the creation account.  Well, in my studies of that evidence, I have found it to be inconclusive at best, and often fraudulent or intentionally misleading.  Perhaps the biggest issue is the fact that radiometric dating methods have been proven unreliable, inconsistent, and return vast age ranges from which scientists cherry pick the dates that suit their narrative.  For example, lava that had hardened into igneous rock after the Mt. St Helens eruption in Washington State in 1980 was radiometrically dated to be 300,000 – 400,000 years old.

The following quote illuminates the problem.

The troubles of the radiocarbon dating method are undeniably deep and serious.  Despite 35 years of technological refinement and better understanding, the underlying assumptions have been strongly challenged… It should be no surprise, then, that fully half of the dates are rejected.  The wonder is, surely, that the remaining half come to be accepted. 

Radiocarbon, Ages in Error,” Anthropological Journal of Canada, Vol 19, No 3, p.9 illuminates the problem.

There is much more to say about the evidence of errors within dating methods, but a daily Bible devotion is not the best place to expand further on those ideas.

If anyone has any questions or comments they would like me to address on any of the devotions dealing with creation this week, please reach out to me at gregrlandry@gmail.com

-Greg Landry

SeekGrowLove Editor: We thank Greg for tackling the job of discussing creation and the Bible during our devotions this week. Too often Godly kids have turned away from the truths of Scripture when faced with “smart” college professors teaching evolution. Greg has studied much and presents the truth of Scripture as well as the errors and inconsistencies of evolution. So, this week we offer a deeper look at creation than could be covered in one day of devotions. Dig in with us – and keep reading from the Bible reading plan as well. Print your copy below and mark off those passages as you go. God bless your journey with Him – from beginning to end!

Who Are You?

Monday –

2 cor 5 17 sunrise

Do you ever feel like who you are is not really who you are?  Or maybe that you know you could be a better/different version of yourself, but aren’t sure how to find that person?

You know, all of us carry labels of some sort.  Maybe you’re the funny guy, or the smart girl, or the troublemaker.  Sometimes we may not feel like we totally deserve our label.  Like, maybe people see you as argumentative, but that’s not how you see yourself.  The fact is, right or wrong, we are all labeled in some way by those around us.

So…what’s your label?

Don’t pretend it doesn’t exist.  What is it?  How would people around you describe you?  What are you known for?

Got it in your mind?

  1. Now think this: What’s true about me now, doesn’t have to be true about me forever.

Our goal is not to reinvent ourselves by trying to be some perfect person.  It’s to uncover our true self as God created us.

Have you ever thought about that?  When God created you, he had the BEST version of you in mind.

And that is the version we need to be striving to become.  The best version of ourselves.

2 Corinthians 5:17 says that “if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!”

We’re going to be looking this week at how we go about becoming who God says we are, who He had in mind when he created us.  So for today, remind yourself again that what is true about you now, doesn’t have to be true about you forever.  You can be a new creation!

Sneak Peek at tomorrow’s devotion:  Try to find examples in Scripture of times when God gave someone a new name.  Why do you think he did that?

-Susan Landry

%d bloggers like this: