Having A Go At Genesis

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Webers.Home

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May 28, 2018
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#1
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Back around 2000 or 2001; I got the daring idea to begin composing a daily,
bite-size commentary on the book of Genesis. It was a clumsy effort at first
but I stuck with it and as time went by, it got pretty good. On some forums
where I've survived opposition long enough to complete the whole fifty
chapters, Genesis has attracted several thousand views.

As of today's date, I'm 76 years old; and an on-going student of the Bible
since 1968 via sermons, seminars, lectures, Sunday school classes, radio
Bible programs, and various authors of a number of Bible-related books.
Fifty-two years of Bible under my belt hasn't made me an authority; but
they've at least made me competent enough to tackle Genesis.

Barring emergencies, accidents, vacations, unforeseen circumstances,
and/or insurmountable distractions, database errors, computer crashes,
black outs, brown outs, deaths in the family, Wall Street Armageddon,
thread hijackers, tangents, excessive quarrelling and debating, the dog ate
my homework, visiting relatives, ISIS, car repairs, Black Friday, Cyber
Monday, student walk-outs, Carrington events, gasoline prices, medical
issues, and/or hard luck and the forces of nature; I'm making an effort to
post something every day including Sundays and holidays.

Some really good stuff is in Genesis: the origin of the cosmos, Adam and
Eve, Cain and Abel, the Flood, tower of Babel, and the origin of the Jews.

Big-name celebrities like Noah, Abraham, Sarah, Isaac and Ishmael,
Rebecca, Jacob and Esau, and Joseph are here.

Not here are Moses vs. Pharaoh and the parting of the Red Sea. That story is
in Exodus; Samson and Delilah are in Judges, David and Goliath are in
1Samuel; and Ruth and Esther are in books of the Bible named after them.

The author of Genesis is currently unknown; but commonly attributed to
Moses. Seeing as he penned Exodus (Mark 12:26) it's conceivable that
Moses also penned Genesis; but in reality, nobody really knows for sure.

Scholars have estimated the date of its writing at around 1450-1410 BC; a
mere 3,400± years ago, which is pretty recent in the grand scheme of
Earth's geological history.

Genesis may in fact be the result of several contributors beginning as far
back as Adam himself; who would certainly know more about the creation
than anybody, and who entertained no doubts whatsoever about the
existence of an intelligent designer since he knew the creator Himself like a
next door neighbor.

As time went by, others like Seth and Noah would add their own experiences
to the record, and then Abraham his, Isaac his, Jacob his, and finally Judah
or one of his descendants completing the record with Joseph's burial.

Genesis is quoted more than sixty times in the New Testament; and Christ
authenticated its Divine inspiration by referring to it in his own teachings.
(e.g. Matt 19:4-6, Matt 24:37-39, Mk 10:4-9, Luke 11:49-51, Luke 17:26
29 & 32, John 7:21-23, John 8:44 and John 8:56)

Buen Camino
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Going_Nowhere

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Nov 10, 2019
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#2
No doubt: Genesis is indeed one of the most (if not THE most) engaging books of the Bible.
 

Webers.Home

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#3
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Gen 1:1a . . In the beginning God

The first chapter of the first book of the Bible doesn't waste words with an
argument to convince scientific minds that a supreme being exists; rather, it
starts off by candidly alleging that the existence of the cosmos is due to
intelligent design. I mean: if the complexity of the cosmos-- its extent, its
objects, and all of its forms of life, matter, and energy --isn't enough to
convince the skeptics; then they're pretty much beyond reach.

The creation story wasn't written for the scientific community anyway, nor
was it written for people who indulge in debating and perpetual bull sessions
that never get to the bottom of anything, nor for people who regard this
book as just another chapter of Pride And Prejudice to dissect in a Jane
Austen book club; rather, the creation story was written for the pious
community.

"By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God's command, so
that what is seen was not made out of what was visible." (Heb 11:3)

There's quite a bit of disagreement related to origins; viz: the origin of
species, the origin of the universe, and the origin of life; but not much
debate about the origin of matter; defined by Webster's as 1) the substance
of which a physical object is composed and 2) material substance that
occupies space, has mass, and is composed predominantly of atoms
consisting of protons, neutrons, and electrons, that constitutes the
observable universe, and that is interconvertible with energy.

Without matter there could be no Big Bang, there could be no universe,
there could be no life, and there could be no evolution. The origin of matter
then is where we have to begin.

The Hebrew word for "God" is 'elohiym (el-o-heem') which isn't the creator's
personal moniker, rather, a nondescript label that pertains to all sorts of
deities both the true and the false and/or the real and the imagined. The
noun is grammatically plural but doesn't necessarily indicate creation's God
is a plural being. Sheep, fish, and deer are plural too but don't always
indicate more than one of each. There are other gods in the Bible, such as
Baal and Dagon, to whom the word 'elohiym is applied and those gods aren't
composite entities; e.g. 1Kgs 18:25-29 and Jgs 16:23.

The word for "heavens" is from the Hebrew word shamayim (shaw-mah'
yim) and means: to be lofty; i.e. the sky; perhaps alluding to the visible
arch in which the clouds move, as well as to the higher void where the
celestial bodies reside, i.e. interstellar space. Even in English, the sky is
commonly referred to in the plural; i.e. heavens instead of heaven; which is
biblically correct since according to 2Cor 12:2 there's at least three.

The Hebrew word for "earth" is 'erets (eh'-rets) which is yet another of the
Bible's many ambiguous words. It can indicate dry land, a country, and/or
even the whole planet.
_
 

Webers.Home

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#4
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Gen 1:2a . . the earth being unformed and void

That statement reveals the earth's condition prior to the creation of an
energy that would make it possible for its matter to coalesce into something
coherent.

Gen 1:2b . . and darkness was over the surface of the deep

This deep is a curiosity because 2Pet 3:5 says the earth was formed out of
water and by water. So I think it's safe to conclude that every atomic
element that God needed to construct the Earth was in suspension in this
deep; viz: it was more than just H2O; it was a colossal chemical soup, and
apparently God created enough of it to put together everything else in the
cosmos too.

Gen 1:2c . . and Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters.

The Hebrew word here for "waters" is another plural noun like 'elohiym;
which means it can be translated either water or waters. Plural nouns are
pretty much at the discretion of translators whether to make them plural or
singular in a particular context.

The Hebrew word for "moving" is located in only three places in the entire
Bible. One is here, and the others are at Deut 32:11 and Jer 23:9. The
meaning is ambiguous. It can refer to brooding; i.e. a mother hen using her
wings to keep her chicks together, and it can refer to incubation and/or
quaking, shaking, and fluttering. Take your pick. I'd guess that the Spirit's
movement was sort of like the hen keeping the colossal chemical soup from
running rampant and spreading itself all over the place before God began
putting it to use because up to this point, gravity didn't exist yet.

Gen 1:3 . . Then God said "Let there be light" and there was light.

The creation of light was a very, very intricate process. First God had to
create particulate matter, and along with those particles their specific
properties, including mass; if any. Then He had to invent the laws of nature
to govern how matter behaves in combination with and/or in the presence
of, other kinds of matter in order to generate electromagnetic radiation.

Light's properties are curious. It propagates as waves in a variety of lengths
and frequencies, and also as quantum bits called photons. And though light
has no mass; it's influenced by gravity. Light is also quite invisible to the
naked eye. For example: you can see the Sun when you look at it, and you
can see the Moon when sunlight reflects from its surface. But none of the
Sun's light is visible to you in the void between them and that's because
light isn't matter; it's energy; and there is really a lot of it.

Space was at one time thought to contain absolutely nothing until radio
astronomers discovered something called cosmic microwave background. In
a nutshell: CMB fills the universe with light that apparently radiates from no
detectable source. The popular notion is that CMB is energy left over from
the Big Bang.

The same laws that make it possible for matter to generate electromagnetic
radiation also make other conditions possible too; e.g. fire, wind, water, ice,
soil, rain, life, centrifugal force, thermodynamics, fusion, dark energy,
gravity, atoms, organic molecules, magnetism, color, radiation, refraction,
reflection, high energy X-rays and gamma rays, temperature, pressure,
force, inertia, sound, friction, and electricity; et al. So the creation of light
was a pretty big deal; yet Genesis scarcely gives it passing mention. That's
no doubt because Genesis is mostly about origins rather than mechanics.

2Cor 4:6 verifies that light wasn't introduced into the cosmos from outside in
order to dispel the darkness and brighten things up a bit; but rather, it
radiated out of the cosmos from inside-- from itself --indicating that the
cosmos was created to be self-illuminating by means of the various
interactions of the matter that God made for it; including, but not limited to,
the Higgs Boson.

Gen 1:4a . . And God saw the light, that it was good

God didn't see the light until He said let there be light; meaning of course
that natural light didn't exist until God made it.

God declared that light is good; but He didn't declare that darkness is good.
In point of fact, darkness typically represents bad things in the Bible; while
light typically represents good things. It's been a rule of thumb from the
very beginning.

NOTE: It's curious to me that most Bible students have no trouble readily
conceding that everything else in the first chapter of Genesis is natural, e.g.
the cosmos, the earth, the atmosphere, water, dry land, the Sun, the Moon,
the stars, aqua life, winged life, terra life, flora life, and human life.

But when it comes to light they choke; finding it impossible within
themselves to believe that Genesis just might be consistent in its description
of the creative process. I mean, if all those other things are natural, why
wouldn't the light be natural too? In point of fact, without natural light,
planet Earth would become a cold dead world right quick.
_
 

Webers.Home

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#5
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Gen 1:4b-5a . . and God separated the light from the darkness. God called
the light Day, and the darkness He called Night.

Defining the properties of day and night may seem like a superfluous detail,
but comes in very handy for organizing the three days and nights related to
Christ's crucifixion and resurrection per Matt 12:40.

Gen 1:5b . . And there was evening and there was morning, a first Day.

When you think about it; a strict chronology of evening and morning doesn't
define day, it defines overnight; viz: darkness. In order to obtain a full 24
hour day, you'd have to define creation's first Day as a day and a night
rather than an evening and a morning.

Well; thus far Genesis defines Day as a time of light rather than a 24-hour
amalgam of light and dark; plus there was no Sun to cause physical
evenings and mornings till creation's fourth Day so we have to come at this
issue from another angle apart from physical properties.

According to Gen 1:24-31, God created humans and all terra critters on the
sixth Day; which has to include dinosaurs because on no other Day did God
create beasts but the sixth.

However; the sciences of geology and paleontology, in combination with
radiometric dating, strongly suggest that dinosaurs preceded humans by
several million years. So then, in my estimation, the Days of creation should
be taken to represent epochs rather than 24-hour events. That's not an
unreasonable estimation; for example:

"These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were
created, in the day that Jehovah God made earth and heaven." (Gen 2:4)

The Hebrew word for "day" in that verse is yowm (yome) which is the very
same word for each of the six Days of God's creation labors. Since yowm in
Gen 2:4 refers to a period of time obviously much longer than a 24-hour
calendar day; it justifies suggesting that each of the six Days of creation
were longer than 24 hours apiece too. In other words: yowm is ambiguous
and not all that easy to interpret sometimes.

Anyway; this "day" thing has been a stone in the shoe for just about
everybody who takes Genesis seriously. It's typically assumed that the Days
of creation consisted of twenty-four hours apiece; so Bible students end up
stumped when trying to figure out how to cope with the 4.5 billion-year age
of the earth, and factor in the various eras, e.g. Triassic, Jurassic, Mesozoic,
Cenozoic, Cretaceous, etc, plus the ice ages and the mass extinction events.

FYI: The epoch theory is only a second opinion, so to speak. There are
other theories out there to choose from; people aren't stuck with this one as if
it's the only possible explanation.

NOTE: Galileo believed that science and religion are allies rather than
enemies-- two different languages telling the same story. He believed that
science and religion complement each other-- science answers questions
that religion doesn't bother to answer, and religion answers questions that
science cannot answer.

For example: theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking understood pretty well
how the universe works; but could never scientifically explain why it should
exist at all. Well; in my estimation, the only possible answer to the "why" is
found in intelligent design; which is a religious explanation rather than
scientific. Religion's "why" is satisfactory for most folks. No doubt scientists
would prefer something a bit more empirical.
_
 

Webers.Home

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#6
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Gen 1:6-8 . . And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the
waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. 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. And God called the
firmament Heaven.

In this case the word for "heaven" is singular probably because we're only
looking at the Earth's atmosphere.

We can easily guess what is meant by water that's below the sky. But is
there really water that's above it? Yes, and it's a lot! According to an article
in the Sept 2013 issue of National Geographic magazine, Earth's atmosphere
holds roughly 3,095 cubic miles of water in the form of vapor. That may
seem like a preposterous number of cubic miles of water; but not really
when it's considered that Lake Superior's volume alone is estimated at
nearly 3,000.

Our home planet is really big; a whole lot bigger than sometimes realized.
It's surface area, in square miles, is 196,940,000. To give an idea of just
how many square miles that is: if somebody were to wrap a belt around the
equator made of one-mile squares; it would only take 24,902 squares to
complete the distance; which is a mere .012644% of the surface area.

Some of the more familiar global warming gases are carbon dioxide,
fluorocarbons, methane, and ozone. But as popular as those gases are with
the media, they're bit players in comparison to the role that ordinary water
vapor plays in global warming. By some estimates; atmospheric water vapor
accounts for more than 90% of global warming; which is not a bad thing
because without atmospheric water vapor, the earth would be so cold that
the only life that could exist here would be extremophiles.

How much water is below the firmament? Well; according to the same
National Geographic article; the amount contained in swamp water, lakes
and rivers, ground water, and oceans, seas, and bays adds up to something
like 326.6 million cubic miles; and that's not counting the 5.85 million cubic
miles tied up in living organisms, soil moisture, ground ice and permafrost,
ice sheets, glaciers, and permanent snow.

To put that in perspective: a tower 326.6 million miles high would exceed
the Sun's distance better than 3½ times. It would've exceeded the distance
between Mars and Earth on July 27, 2018 by 5 times.

Gen 1:8b . . And the evening and the morning were the second day.

At this point, there was no sun to cause physical evenings and mornings; so
we can safely assume that the terms are merely place-cards indicating the
completion of one of creation's six-step processes and the beginning of
another.

Gen 1:9 . . And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered
together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so.

At this point, dry land as yet had no soil because at first it would've been
bare rock.

"He set the earth on its foundations, so that it should never be moved. You
covered it with the deep as with a garment; the waters stood above the
mountains. At your rebuke they fled; at the sound of your thunder they took
to flight. The mountains rose, the valleys sank down to the place that you
appointed for them. You set a boundary that they may not pass, so that they
might not again cover the earth." (Ps 104:5-9)

Psalm 104 is stunning; and clearly way ahead of its time. Mountains rising,
and valleys sinking speaks of magma pressure and tectonic plate
subduction-- on-going titanic forces that keep the Earth's surface in a
perpetual state of alteration.

Now, it's right about here that young-earth theorists have a problem
because it's obvious from physical evidence that much of the Earth's higher
elevations were inundated for a very, very long time before they were
pushed up to where they are now.

Take for example Mount Everest. Today its tippy top is something like
29,029 feet above sea level. The discovery of fossilized sea lilies near its
summit proves that the Himalayan land mass has not always been
mountainous; but at one time was the floor of an ancient sea bed. This is
confirmed by the "yellow band" below Everest's summit consisting of
limestone: a type of rock made from calcite sediments containing the
skeletal remains of countless trillions of organisms who lived, not on dry
land, but in an ocean.

Anyway; soil formation is a very slow process, sometimes taking as long as
a millennium to make just one inch; which at first would consist of little
more than powdered rock. In order for soil to become really productive, it
needs organic material mixed with it. So it's my guess that the very first
vegetation that God created were species that thrive on stone, and little by
little their remains would amend the powder to increase its fertility.

Some of the lyrics of one of AC/DC's songs says: It's a long way to the top if
you wanna rock 'n roll. Well, it was an even longer ways to the soil from
which human life was eventually brought into viable existence.

Gen 1:10 . . And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together
of the waters He called Seas: and God saw that it was good.

"good" meaning not that the dry ground and seas are morally acceptable,
but rather, perfectly suitable for the purposes that God had in mind for
them.

NOTE: There are Hebrew words in the Bible for marshes, rivers, and
streams; but I've yet to encounter one for lakes and ponds. In other words
"seas" suffices not only for oceans; but also for smaller accumulations. (A
rather curious sea is located at 1Kings 7:23-26)
_
 

Webers.Home

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May 28, 2018
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#7
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NOTE: I probably should've said this right at the gun, but now's as good a
time as any.

This is a not a forum, it's a blog; there's a difference. Forums invite
discussions, while blogs only invite audiences. So please, if you must
comment, stay on-topic and compose your posts in such a way that they
don't foment debating and/or perpetual bull sessions.

I have to make this statement because the first three chapters of Genesis
are very controversial and have sparked a variety of conflicting
interpretations. That's all well and good because viewers are entitled to a
second opinion. But I much prefer that those opinions be given their own
blog rather than parasite mine and thereby muddy the waters.

Thank You
_
 

Webers.Home

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#8
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Gen 1:11a . . Then God said: Let the land produce vegetation

The Hebrew word for "produce" appears in only two places in the entire Old
Testament; here and Joel 2:22. It basically means to sprout. Here and in
Joel, it refers to species of plants where none of their kind previously
existed.

The variety of Earth's vegetation is boggling. It's estimated between
250,000 to 315,000 species-- that's the plants we know of but doesn't
include the ones that may have existed in the past prior to catastrophic
weather conditions and extinction events.

Gen 1:11b-12 . . seed-bearing plants, fruit trees of every kind on earth
that bear fruit with the seed in it. And it was so. The earth brought forth
vegetation: seed-bearing plants of every kind, and trees of every kind
bearing fruit with the seed in it. And God saw that this was good.

According to Gen 2:4-5, the land's vegetation was dormant in the beginning;
it didn't actually flourish until the atmosphere began producing moisture.

NOTE: It's believed by science that there was an era in Earth's youth called
the Carboniferous period when it was blanketed by dense jungles and
forests. As those plants and trees died, and were buried beneath layers of
sediment; their unique chemical structure caused them to be "cooked" into
solid coal; and there is really a lot of it.

Why isn't the Earth currently blanketed by dense jungles and forests? Well;
the earth's conditions today cannot produce enough humidity, nor enough
rain, nor enough global warming to sustain the kinds of heavy vegetation
that once existed in the Carboniferous era. In other words: the Earth, over
time, has managed to give itself a remarkable make-over; and at least one
element of its make-over are the mountains.

The ranges now in existence; e.g. the Andes, the Himalayas, the Rockies,
the Urals, the Appalachians, the Cascades, the Brooks Range, the Alps, etc;
and the various minor inland and coastal ranges weren't always in place
where they are now. Those were shoved up over time by the forces of
tectonic subduction, volcanism, and magma pressure. Even Yosemite's
massive granite monoliths haven't always been there. They were formed
deep underground and then somehow shoved up to where they are now.

Anyway, point being; those ranges have a very great deal to do with the
Earth's current weather systems.

Gen 1:13 . . And there was evening and there was morning, a third day.
_
 

Webers.Home

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May 28, 2018
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#9
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Gen 1:14a . . God said: Let there be lights in the expanse of the sky

On the fourth day, God spent time up in celestial regions. It might seem odd
that He began work on the surface of the Earth, and then before finishing,
stopped short and moved off into space. Why not finish building down here
on the planet first?

Well; at this point in the process of creation, planet Earth was very dark and
freezing cold. For example: the dark side of the Moon gets down to minus
279º F (-172.8° C) so it was time to turn man's home into a greenhouse if
anything meaningful was to live down here.

A major player in the Earth's water cycle is evaporation, which is driven by
the Sun. By means of evaporation, the earth's atmosphere gets enough
water vapor to form the clouds that produce precipitation.

The Sun also plays a role in temperature variations that make conditions like
humidity and fog possible. Temperature variations also play a role in the
process of erosion; which assists in soil formation.

Many varieties of vegetation depend upon the annual cycle of the four
seasons of Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter; seasons which would not
be possible without the Sun.

Oxygen is a must gas for sustaining life on Earth and a very large
percentage of it is produced by photosynthesis which is a chemical process
that works best in sunlight. No doubt the original atmosphere contained
oxygen enough, but would eventually be absorbed by oxidation and other
kinds of chemical activity. Plant life plays a major role in both filtration and
replenishment; hence the need to get a Sun shining as soon as possible.

The atmosphere contains on average 19.5 to 23.5 percent oxygen; even
with all the fossil fuel burned around the world, along with the destruction of
savannas, prairies, woodlands, wetlands, and rain forests, coupled with
volcanic activity; the percentage remain fairly stable.

Today's science is aware that the Moon doesn't generate its own light; but
prior to that discovery, people no doubt regarded the Moon as a second Sun;
especially seeing as how from the perspective of Earth, the Sun and the
Moon appear to be the same size in diameter, and both appear to circle the
Earth.

Gen 1:14b . . to distinguish Day from Night;

On the first day of the creative process; God defined Day as a condition of
light; and defined Night as a condition of darkness. Here, it's further defined
that Day, as pertains to life on Earth, is distinctly separate from Night rather
than a 24-hour amalgam of light and dark.

The properties of Day and Night come out so early in the Bible that they
easily escape the memories of Bible students as they slip into the reflexive
habit of always thinking of Days as periods of one Earth rotation of 24 hours.
That's okay for calendars but can lead to gross misunderstandings when
interpreting biblical schedules, predictions, and/or chronologies, e.g. Matt
12:40.

Gen 1:14c . . they shall serve as signs for the set times-- the days and the
years;

The word for "signs" is from 'owth (oth) and means a signal; viz: indicators.
For example: the mark that God put on Cain was an 'owth. (Gen 4:15)

The Sun's movement across the sky is very useful for keeping time. It
probably didn't take long for early men to realize they could divide a day into
convenient elements by utilizing shadow.

"seasons" is translated from either mowed' (mo-ade') or moed` (mo-ade').
Those words are translated "congregation" numerous times in the Old
Testament relative to special dates on the calendar.

While the Sun is useful for keeping track of solar increments, the Moon is
useful for marking off lunar increments. For example: were you to tell
somebody your intention to visit them in five Moons, they would have a
pretty good idea when to get ready for your arrival; so long as you both
used a common definition of "moon". To some, a moon is New Moon, while
for others a moon indicates Full Moon.

If the Sun and the Moon were the hands of a clock; the Sun would be the
minute hand and the Moon would be the hour hand; so to speak.

Years in the Old Testament are sometimes based upon a 30-day month; and
they're not always marked by the Sun's position in space relative to the
stars. More about this later when we get to Noah.
_
 

Webers.Home

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#10
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Gen 1:15-18a . . and they shall serve as lights in the expanse of the sky to
shine upon the Earth. And it was so. God made the two great lights, the
greater light to dominate the day and the lesser light to dominate the night,
and the stars. And God set them in the expanse of the sky to shine upon the
Earth, to dominate the day and the night, and to distinguish light from
darkness.

Gen 1:3-5 defines day as a condition of light, and defines night as a
condition of darkness. Gen 1:14-18 defines day on Earth as when the Sun is
up and night on Earth is defined as when the Sun is down; and that's how it
was when Christ was here.

"Are there not twelve hours in the day? If anyone walks in the day, he does
not stumble, because he sees the light of this world." (John 11:9)

The "light of this world" is the Sun.

At this point in biblical history, "stars" no doubt indicates all luminous
objects in the heavens seeing as how it would be a very long time before
humanity began categorizing some of the stars as planets.

I think it's important to emphasize that in the beginning God "set" the stars
in the sky just as he set the Sun and the Moon in the sky, i.e. celestial
objects didn't arrange themselves all by themselves sans any intelligent
supervision whatsoever; no, they were placed; and not only were they set in
place, but also set in motion-- nothing in the entire cosmos is standing still,
though many things appear to be.

According to Gen 1:15, stars illuminated the Earth on the "day" that God
made them.

Well; the only stars whose shine is of any practical use as illumination are
those of the Milky Way; which is estimated 100,000 to 180,000 light years in
diameter. Obviously then; if left entirely up to nature, light from stars
nearest our location in the galaxy would begin dousing the earth with
illumination long before those at the far side.

For example, light from Alpha Centauri takes only about 4½ years to reach
Earth while light from Alpha Orionis (a.k.a. Betelgeuse) takes about 640.
There are quite a few stars whose illumination reaches Earth in less than 50
years. But whether 4½ years, 50 years, 640 years, or 180,000 years; the
time involved is insignificant if we but allow that the days of creation were
epochs rather than 24-hour events.

But what's the point of putting all those objects out there in space? Well, for
one thing, they're not only brain teasers; but they're actually quite pretty.
Celestial objects decorate the night sky like the ornamentation people put up
during holidays. The night sky would sure be a bore if it was totally black.
Decorated with stars; the night sky is like a beautiful tapestry, or a celestial
Sistine Chapel.

"The heavens declare the glory of God, the sky proclaims His handiwork."
(Ps 19:2)

Stars makes better sense that way than to try and find some other meaning
for them. The universe is simply a magnificent work of art-- just as
intriguing, if not more so, than the works of Picasso, Rembrandt,
Michelangelo, Monet, Vermeer, and da Vinci --testifying to the genius of an
engineer-artist without peer.

Sadly, a number of very intelligent people like Carl Sagan and Neil deGrasse
Tyson look to the sky for the wrong reasons. Why not just look to the sky for
inspiration instead of only exploration and discovery? What's so bad about
visiting the sky as a Guggenheim or a Louvre displaying your maker's many
faceted talents?

"For what can be known about God is evident to them, because God made it
evident to them. Ever since the creation of the world, His invisible attributes
of eternal power and divinity have been able to be understood and perceived
in what He has made." (Rom 1:19-20)

Gen 1:18b-19 . . And God saw that this was good. And there was evening
and there was morning, a fourth day.
_
 

Webers.Home

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#11
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Gen 1:20-21a . . And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the
moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the
open firmament of heaven. And God created great whales, and every living
creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their
kind, and every winged fowl after his kind.

How can water alone be used to create living things? Well, it can't be any
more difficult than creating the entire cosmos ex nihilo; i.e. from and/or out
of nothing.

However, one of the essential elements for the construction of organic life is
carbon. Well; seawater contains that element, along with several others too;
and there's plenty enough seawater that's for sure.

The word for "creature" is from nephesh (neh'-fesh) which refers to
consciousness, individuality, and self awareness. It never applies to
vegetation. For example: though saguaro cacti are alive, they aren't
nephesh because vegetation lacks a sense of individuality and is neither
conscious nor self aware, i.e. nephesh refers to all critter life great and
small; but never to non critter life.

Nephesh shows up first in Gen 1:20-21 as sea creatures and winged
creatures.

Next it shows up in Gen 1:24 as terra creatures; viz: cattle, creepy crawlies,
and wild beasts.

It shows up again in Gen 2:7 as the human creature.

It shows up again in Gen 2:19-20 as the creatures to whom Adam gave
names.

It shows up again in Gen 9:8-16 as all conscious life aboard the ark,
including Noah and his family.

Some say that animals are people too. Well . . they're certainly not human,
but according to the Bible, they are very definitely just as much a nephesh
as a human being. So I guess we could consent, at least to some degree,
that critters are people too; in their own way.

The Hebrew word for "fowl" is 'owph (ofe) which just simply means covered
with wings as opposed to covered with feathers. It's a rather unusual word
because it includes not only creatures with feathers, but according to Lev
11:13-23, 'owph also pertains to bats and flying insects. The English word
"fowl" was obviously an arbitrary translation since owph is ambiguous.

What did those early flyers look like? Well; I suggest that at least some of
them had to be Pterosaurs because on no other day but the fifth did God
bring about critters with wings. Precisely when and/or how God phased out
those early skin-winged creatures is one of science's thorniest mysteries. It's
reasonable to assume that whatever exterminated the Pterosaurs should
have exterminated everything else with wings too; but somehow birds, bats,
and flying bugs are still with us.

It's important to note that winged creatures were just as distinct a creation
as aqua creatures. So winged creatures didn't evolve from creatures who
once lived in the sea. Winged creatures are a separate genre of life in their
own right, and absolutely did not evolve from some other order of life.

"great whales" is from tanniyn (tan-neen') and/or tanniym (tan-neem')
which mean: a marine or land monster. Tanniyn is sometimes translated
"dragon" as in Isa 27:1

It wasn't a tanniyn, however, that swallowed Jonah. That creature was
either a dagah (daw-gaw') a dag (dawg) or a da'g (dawg). All three words
mean a fish.

NOTE: The reason I quoted the three Hebrew words for "fish" is because the
fact is: translators are not always confident how best to represent a Hebrew
word with the English alphabet. In point of fact, there are ancient Hebrew
words that nobody really knows what they mean so translators are forced to
take educated guesses here and there in order to fill in the text.

"every living creature that moveth" would include not only critters that swim
but also critters that creep, e.g. starfish, lobsters, crayfish, newts, clams,
and crabs et al.

But what about aquatic dinosaurs? Well; according to Discovery's web site
"Walking With Dinosaurs" paleontologists believe there were some
amphibious reptiles such as plesiosaurs and ichthyosaurs, but those
creatures didn't have the gills necessary to be truly aquatic like Nemo and
his dad Marlin.

Gen 1:21b . . And God saw that this was good.

In other words: He was satisfied.

The Hebrew word for "good" in this instance is towb (tobe) which is horribly
ambiguous. It's meanings range from morally good, to good looking, to a job
well done, to something that's good to the taste; and to a whole lot of other
things in between; e.g. a good show, good food, as good as it gets,
satisfactory, pleasing; etc, etc.
_
 

Webers.Home

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#12
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Gen 1:22a . . God blessed them, saying: Be fruitful and increase,

This is the very first place in the Bible where the Hebrew word for "bless"
shows up. It's somewhat ambiguous, but in this case I think it's pretty safe
to assume that it means to furnish freely or naturally with some power,
quality, or attribute; i.e. provide, endow, and/or empower. In other words:
the blessing of fertility was a providential act; and no doubt included
microscopic creatures as well as those visible to the naked eye.

Providence is common in the Bible; especially in Genesis.

Gen 1:22b . . fill the waters in the seas, and let the winged creatures
increase on the earth.

Winged creatures have the advantage of flight; which, in my estimation,
makes them more fortunate than creatures confined to water. The wingers
get a much better world view from above than those below. Flying broadens
one's horizons, so to speak, and gives us a bigger picture. Amphibious
flyers, e.g. cormorants and grebes, have the best of both environs; they see
things from above as well as from below.

Aqua creatures exist in the most unlikely places. When the crew of the
bathyscaphe Trieste descended into the 35,761 feet Challenger Deep located
in the deepest part of the Mariana Trench in 1960, they didn't really expect
to find anything living down there; but to their surprise, they saw a flat fish
similar to sole and flounder.

The video camera on board the Kaiko probe spotted a sea cucumber, a scale
worm and a shrimp at the bottom.

The Nereus probe spotted a polychaete worm (a multi-legged predator)
about an inch long.

Gen 1:23 . . And there was evening and there was morning, a fifth day.

Gen 1:24-25 . .Then God said: Let the earth bring forth living creatures
after their kind-- cattle and creeping things and beasts of the earth after
their kind, And it was so. And God made the beasts of the earth after their
kind, and the cattle after their kind, and everything that creeps on the
ground after its kind; and God saw that it was good.

We've come now to the sixth day when all terra life was created; including
humans.

This grouping of creatures (except for Man) isn't specifically given the
blessing of fertility; but if God would bless aqua creatures and those with
wings, why ever would He not bless the terra species too who are just as
important? But since they've been reproducing all this time, then I'd have to
say there is sufficient circumstantial evidence to support the assumption that
they too were empowered to reproduce.

The Hebrew word for "living" is chay (khah'-ee) which basically indicates
existing as life as opposed to existing as non life. For example, the structural
elements of Noah's ark existed as non life; while it's passengers existed as
life.

(Some people insist that all things are alive. I recommend leaving that belief
at the door when crossing the Bible's threshold because scripture doesn't
accommodate it; and that kind of thinking only fosters confusion in the
minds of those who entertain it.)

Chay makes it first appearance at Gen 1:20 in reference to aqua creatures
and winged creatures; and many times in the Old Testament thereafter;
including fifteen times in reference to the Creator; e.g. Jer 10:10, indicating
that the creator is a living being as opposed to a totem pole or a mythical
fantasy. There is a very large number of instances recorded in the Old
Testament where the Creator speaks of Himself as "I am".

Terra critters weren't created ex nihilo; rather, from the very land upon
which they live; i.e. God used earthly materials and ingredients already at
hand to construct them. Neat-O. Not only are the various plants and animals
indigenous to planet Earth; but they are part of it too and blend right back in
when they die and decompose.

Beasts of the earth, in this instance, simply refers to wild life as opposed to
domesticated life. Dinosaurs would've been in the wild classification.

Cattle refers to mute beasts (a.k.a. dumb animals) --the herd species from
which came those that can be domesticated for Man's uses. They can pull
plows and wagons, provide tallow for candles and soap, and hide and wool
for clothes, meat and dairy for table, carry loads, and transport people from
place to place on their backs. (Probably one of the better things that Spain
did for Native Americans was make it possible for them to have horses.)

NOTE: Looking a steed on the cheap? Well; according to the May 2017 issue
of Smithsonian magazine; there are something like 70,000 wild horses and
burros running free on Federal lands causing an unacceptable amount of
environmental damage. No doubt the BLM would appreciate your help in
reducing those numbers.

Not all herd animals can be tamed. Zebras, for instance, and male elephants
are not particularly suited to domestication.

It's no accident that some of the animals are so useful to Man. God made
them for the express purpose of serving people. Although they're nephesh,
same as Man, that doesn't make them equals with Man. However, although
beasts are below the rank of the image and likeness of God, people have no
right to be cruel to animals. But Man does have the right, by the creator's
fiat, to take advantage of them; and to induct them into slavery for Man's
benefit.

No doubt some of us would be happy if a few of the creeping species had not
been created, e.g. scorpions, centipedes, cockroaches, tarantulas, fleas,
ticks, ants; et al.
_
 

Webers.Home

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#13
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Gen 1:26a . . And God said: Let us make Man in our image, after our
likeness.

The introduction of the plural personal pronouns "us" and "our" into the
narrative at this point has given rise to some interesting speculation
regarding the identities of the antecedents.

The Hebrew word for "Man" is 'adam (aw-dawm') which, in this case, simply
refers to human life; i.e. humanity. It's actually a specie name rather than a
proper name.

Because of the terms "image and likeness" there are some who believe that
humanity's creator is some sort of hominid; or at least resembles one. But
according to Christ, Man's creator is non physical.

"God is spirit" (John 4:24)

Spirits don't have solid bodies. (Luke 24:36-39)

God instructed Moses' people to avoid making any kind of mannequin,
figurine, totem pole, or statue representing God since no one has any true
concept of what creation's God actually looks like in person. (Ex 4:10-19,
John 1:18, John 5:37)

There exists absolutely nothing in nature physically resembling its creator;
except maybe the air in front of our face-- neither Man, nor beast, nor plant,
nor bird, nor bug, nor reptile nor anything out in the void (Rom 1:21-23).
Pagan concepts that portray creation's God as a human being are purely
fantasy. (Rom 1:25)

One of the meanings of image and likeness is located at Gen 5:3.

"When Adam had lived one hundred and thirty years, he became the father
of a son in his own likeness, according to his image, and named him Seth."

The apostle Paul once said to the men of Athens, relative to the creator: "We
are His offspring". (Acts 17:28-29)

In other words: the creator, in a strange sort of way, is humanity's parent.

"I said: You are sons of the Most High." (Ps 82:6b)

If humans were paternal sons of the Most High-- viz: if they were biological
sons --they'd be immortal because God is immortal; i.e. like begets like. But
humans are not immortal.

"Nevertheless you will die like men" (Ps 82:7)

So then we are safe to conclude that humanity's image and likeness of God
isn't the same as Seth's image and likeness of Adam; and humanity's divine
sonship isn't biological. God didn't reproduce in order to bring humans into
existence, rather, He created them into existence from dust rather than from
Himself.

Humans then, because of their special relationship with the creator, are,
from a certain point of view, a divine species of created life.

"I said: You are gods" (Ps 82:6a)

So very early it comes out that there are at least two categories of gods in
the Bible; there's the supreme god called Jehovah, and there is the lesser
god called Man.

There is of course only one true god (Deut 6:4, John 17:3, 1Cor 8:4-6) so
we conclude that Man's divinity isn't intrinsic, rather, it's ersatz; i.e.
artificial. It's a bestowed kind of divinity rather than inherited. Jesus Christ,
on the other hand, got his divinity by inheritance; which is a kind of divinity
that's vastly superior to Adam's; viz: humans are artificial gods; while Jesus
Christ is the genuine article. (Heb 1:1-14)

Gen 1:26b . . let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air,
over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move
along the ground.

Humanity's sovereignty, power, and control over nature is primarily where
we find the exercise of its image and likeness of God; in other words: Man
does not answer to nature-- just the opposite --nature answers to Man. (Ps
8:4-8)

The word for "rule" is from radah (raw-daw') and means: to tread down, i.e.
subjugate; specifically: to crumble off.

I saw a pretty interesting bumper sticker some time ago that went like this:

We Are Not Above The Earth;
We Are of the Earth.

Well . . I respect Native America's cultural sentiment underlying that
statement; and must admit that I agree with it to a certain extent. But the
creator decreed that though Man is of the earth; he is very definitely above
it too, and has the God-given authority to subjugate every living thing on
the planet including its forests, its grasses, its rivers, its seas, its soil, its
rocks, its air, its minerals, its mountains, its valleys, and even its tectonic
plates and the earth's very atmosphere itself. According to Heb 2:8,
humanity is on track to take control of even more.
_
 

Webers.Home

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#14
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Gen 1:27a . . So God created man in His own image, in the image of God
He created him;

If humans were paternal sons of the Most High-- viz: if people were His
biological offspring --they'd be eternal beings like Himself because God is an
eternal being; i.e. like begets like. But humans for now are not even
immortal let alone eternal.

So then we are safe to conclude that humanity's image and likeness of God
wasn't the same as Seth's image and likeness of Adam, viz: humanity's
divine sonship isn't biological. God didn't reproduce in order to bring humans
into existence, rather, He created them into existence from dust rather than
from Himself.

Gen 1:27b . . male and female He created them.

It's okay to pity people who refuse to be identified by their gender and
prefer to be known as non binary, i.e. as neither male nor female. But there
is no just no way on God's green earth that Bible believing Christians should
ever be supportive of the non binary movement because the image and
likeness of God finds its completeness in distinct male and female gender
identities.

There's a term for people who believe themselves to be someone and/or
something other than what and/or who they really are. I think it might be
called Dissociative Disorder. There was a time when society confined people
with those kinds of conditions to psychiatric facilities for observation and
therapy, but nowadays political correctness requires that they be "included".
But God-honoring Christian churches dare not accept into their membership
someone known to identify themselves as non binary.

"See to it that no one misses the grace of God, and that no bitter root grows
up to cause trouble and defile many." (Heb 12:15)

A bitter root is one belonging to a species unfit for human consumption.
When you find noxious vegetation sprouting in your garden, you've got to
get out there with a hoe and dig that stuff up before it spreads out of
control.

NOTE: The pronoun "them" in Gen 1:27 is a bit ambiguous. It can refer to
the first couple; but it can just as easily refer to the human specie in total.
In other words: Gen 1:26-27 speaks of all of us; and by extension, so does
Gen 2:16-17 because according to Acts 17:26, that's how it worked out.

Some women would be offended by association with a male pronoun but it's
a biblical designation nonetheless. Regardless of one's natural gender, all
human beings are of the 'adam species and can be legitimately referred to
as a him or as a he because all of us, regardless of gender, are extensions of
a solo specimen; including Eve because she was made from a human tissue
sample taken from a man's body. Bible students really have to watch for
that because when they run across the word "man" and/or "men" in the
Bible, it doesn't always indicate males.
_
 

Webers.Home

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#15
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Gen 1:28a . . God blessed them and God said to them: Be fruitful and
increase,

Some interpret that verse to be an edict requiring married people to have
children; and that they have no business getting married for any other
reason. But the wording is so obviously a blessing rather than a law.

It's always best to regard blessings as benefits, approvals, and/or
empowerments unless clearly indicated otherwise. Some blessings have to
be merited (e.g. Deut 28:1-13) but not this one. It was neither requested
nor was it earned-- it was freely given without any strings attached and
nothing asked in return.

NOTE: According to Gen 2:18-24, marriage is primarily for the purpose of
companionship rather than procreation.

Without the empowerment of fertility, Man would be just as sterile as a soup
spoon. So it was a very essential blessing. And a very interesting blessing it
is because the blessing of fertility empowers living things to pass their own
kind of life on to a next generation. God quit creating after six days. So
unless creatures were enabled to reproduce, all would soon die out and
become quite extinct in a very short time.

Libido therefore, is an essential element of the blessing of fertility. God
intended for His creatures to reproduce; and to ensure that they did, He
wired them all with libido rather than instilling within them a sense of duty.
It isn't necessary to cajole creatures to mate; no, they will do so on their
own, propelled by built-in sensual proclivities and predilections.

Gen 1:28b . . fill the earth and master it; and rule the fish of the sea, the
birds of the sky, and all the living things that creep on earth.

The Hebrew word for "master" is from kabash (kaw-bash') which emphasizes
coercion and force; and means: to disregard; to conquer, and to violate.

The word for "rule" is from radah (raw-daw') and means: to tread down; to
subjugate.

kabash and radah are very strong language. Those two words combined
leave no room for doubt regarding Man's supremacy in the sphere of things.
God blessed humanity with the authority to dominate and to violate planet
Earth at will, and exploit it to his own advantage. Man answers to no plant
nor animal on this entire globe. The whole Earth is within the scope of
humanity's purview. If aliens ever come here unannounced, they can be
arrested for trespassing, and/or charged for parking because this earth is
'adam's domain.

But the interesting thing is; the 'adam specie is also the monarch of the
whole cosmos; not just the dinky little third rock from the Sun where he
hangs his hat.

"For in that He put all in subjection under him, He left nothing that is not put
under him." (Heb 2:6-8)

Gen 1:29-30 . . God said: See, I give you every seed-bearing plant that is
upon all the earth, and every tree that has seed-bearing fruit; they shall be
yours for food. And to all the animals on land, to all the winged creatures of
the sky, and to everything that creeps on earth, in which there is the breath
of life, I give all the green plants for food. And it was so.

Prior to the Flood; humans, beasts, creepy crawlies, and winged creatures
too-- even the lions and tigers and hawks and eagles and pythons, vultures
and crocodiles --subsisted on vegetation. Precisely what kind of diet God
intended for aqua life isn't stated.

That raises an interesting question: why do carnivores have teeth so
uniquely suited for killing other creatures and ripping their flesh? Well, I
think it's clear they didn't use their teeth like that at first.

For example; buck-toothed beavers have incisors that could take your hand
off but they don't use them for that purpose. Male musk deer have saber
like upper canine teeth and their diet is moss and grass and sometimes
twigs and lichen. And everybody knows about Wally the walrus' big ol' tusks;
which he doesn't use to kill his food, but rather, to plow up the sea bottom
in search of his favorite mollusks.

Though the fossilized remains of a therapsid, named Tiarajudens
eccentricus, exhibits saber tusks, it is believed to have efficiently chewed
leaves and stems with interlocking incisors and cow-like molars.

In the future kingdom of God, carnivores won't be carnivorous any more,
and nothing in the animal kingdom will any longer pose a danger to either
Man or to each other. (Isa 11:6-9)
_
 

Webers.Home

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#16
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Gen 1:31 . . And God saw all that He had made, and found it very good.
And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.

Some feel that the cosmos-- all of its forms of life, matter, and energy --was
created incomplete, not quite up to snuff: that it was to Man that God
entrusted the task of putting on the finishing touches. But that is very
doubtful. Why ever would God, after an overall inspection, conclude His work
by pronouncing it all good-- and not just good, but "very" good. Why would
He say the creation was very good if in truth it was incomplete?

In reality, humans haven't improved the planet at all. They've actually
ravaged Earth and left it with terrible damage-- leveled mountains, dried up
rivers, emptied lakes, drained marshes, indiscriminately obliterated habitat,
wiped out animals to extinction, scraped away perfectly good cropland and
replaced it with warehouses and factories and malls and residential
communities.

A prime example of this kind of destruction is INTEL's massive Ronler Acres
Campus located on what was once agricultural land in Hillsboro Oregon.
Thousands of cubic yards of perfectly good topsoil was scraped away during
construction of the facility. What did they do with it? Was it transferred
elsewhere in order to use it for farming? No, instead INTEL used it to build a
massive privacy berm all around the facility where the soil will never again
grow food. NIKE did the very same thing with the topsoil scraped away
during construction of its facility in Beaverton.

Denuded watersheds have caused unnecessary erosion and stream
sedimentation. Man dams rivers, thus disrupting ancient fish migrations.
He's over-exploited natural resources, filled the atmosphere with toxins and
greenhouse gas emissions, poisoned aquifers, contaminated soil and
waterways with chemical fertilizers, pesticides, and herbicides; littered the
oceans with billions of pounds of plastic, made possible super germs, and
seriously upset the balance of nature.

It seems that most everything 'adam touches, he ruins; and as if the Earth
isn't enough, he's moved out into space where in the years since Russia
launched its first Sputnik into low Earth orbit on Oct 04, 1957, humans have
littered the sky around their planet with 13,000 catalogued pieces of space
junk, which is only a fraction of the more than 600,000 objects circling the
globe larger than one centimeter (a centimeter is a little over 3/8ths of an
inch). Humans have even discarded 374,782 pounds of litter on the Moon,
including the golf balls that astronaut Alan Shepherd left behind.

So; when God looked over His work and "found" that it was very good, does
that mean He was surprised it came out like it did? (chuckle) No. It would be
a strange craftsman indeed who couldn't look over their work with
satisfaction in a job well done.

I believe the universe's architect knew precisely what He was doing, and
where He was going with His work; and was highly pleased that it came out
exactly as planned. I seriously doubt that God was feeling His way along like
experimenters in medicine and chemistry. Nobody could build a fully
functioning cosmos and all of its forms of life, matter, and energy unless
they knew what they were doing from beginning to end.
_
 

Webers.Home

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#17
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Gen 2:1-2 . .The heaven and the earth were finished, and all their array.
On the seventh day God finished the work that He had been doing, and He
ceased on the seventh day from all the work that He had done.

The seventh day is unique. The other six days were bounded by an evening
and a morning. The seventh day is not bounded; which means it has not yet
ended; viz: God has been on a creation sabbatical ever since, and has
created nothing new for the current cosmos since the end of day six; i.e. the
Earth that I live on today is the very same planet that God created in the
beginning.

Granted the Earth's topography has been altered quite a bit since Noah's
day, for example there is no longer any river systems connecting the Tigris
and Euphrates with Ethiopia. However, I consider those alterations as little
more than remodeling; so to speak. In other words; though a home
undergoes remodeling; it's the same home though it may have a different
look.

Though it's stated in that passage that the creator finished His work and
ceased creating things for the current cosmos; yet people are still under the
impression that He creates new souls every time a baby is conceived in its
mommy's womb. But the seventh day isn't bounded by an evening and a
morning; ergo: it has not yet ended; which means God hasn't gone back to
creating things for the current cosmos.

Adam's progeny-- you and I and all the others --are not direct creations;
no; we're reproductions; viz: there's no need for mankind's creator to take a
hand in producing baby souls, or any other kinds of souls for that matter
because He created all life on earth as sustainable, transferable kinds of life.
The blessing of fertility is a remarkable blessing because it enables living
things to reproduce themselves sans divine micro management.

In the future; after the current cosmos is utterly obliterated, God will once
again roll up His sleeves, and go back to work creating things.

"For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall
not be remembered, nor come into mind." (Isa 65:17)

"But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the
heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with
fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned
up . . . we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth,
wherein dwelleth righteousness." (2Pet 3:10-13)

"And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first
earth were passed away; and there was no more sea." (Rev 21:1)

Gen 2:3 . . And God blessed the seventh day and declared it holy, because
on it God ceased from all the work of creation that He had done.

The phrase "declared it holy" is from the word qadash (kaw-dash') which
means: to be clean, or to make, pronounce, or observe as clean; viz:
sanitize. Pronouncing something clean, or observing something as clean
and/or conferring upon something the status of clean and sanitized, doesn't
mean it's intrinsically clean. It's just regarded as fully dedicated to God's
purposes; which is exactly what the word "sanctified" implies. The Hebrew
word for "sanctify" is also qadash: the very same word as for "declared it
holy".

Gen 2:4 . .These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when
they were created, in the day that Jehovah God made earth and heaven.

The Hebrew word for "day" in that verse is yowm (yome) which is the very
same word for each of the six days of God's creation labors. Since yowm
here refers to a period of time obviously much longer than a 24-hour
calendar day; it justifies categorizing each of the six days of creation as
epochs of indeterminate length.

Gen 2:4 is the very first time in Scripture where the name Yhvh appears.
The correct pronunciation is currently unknown. Sometimes it's pronounced
Yehovah, sometimes Jehovah, and sometimes Yahweh.

The appellation is so sacred among pious Jews that they make every effort
to avoid speaking it except under very special circumstances. In some of
their writings, in order to avoid using the four sacred letters comprising the
tetragrammaton, they write instead "The Name" and/or sometimes
"Hashem". So Ex 20:3 could be written: "I, The Name, am your god" or "I,
Hashem, am your god."

BTW: According to Phil 2:9-11, God bestowed upon Jesus Christ the name
that is above every other name that can be named; viz: Jesus Christ has the
God-given right to be known as Yhvh. God also promoted His son to the
highest of all positions; viz: Jesus Christ now shares the very throne of God
where he's known as God, rules as God, and speaks as God; which has been
pretty much his ultimate destiny all along (Ps 2:1-12, Ps 45:1-7, Ps 110:1).
That's all I dare say about that for now lest I derail our journey thru
Genesis.

NOTE: Yhvh is commonly referred to with masculine pronouns because He's
a king; and kings are always males rather than females; e.g. Isa 44:6.
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Webers.Home

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#18
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Gen 2:5 . . and every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and
every herb of the field before it grew: for the Lord God had not caused it to
rain upon the earth, and there was not a man to till the ground.

Bible students have to exercise caution when reading that section in order to
avoid making the mistake of concluding that human life was created prior to
vegetation; when we know for a fact from the day-by-day account in the
first chapter that humans were the very last to be put on earth. Gen 2:4-7 is
only saying that when God created vegetation on day three, it wasn't
permitted to flourish right away.

Gen 2:6 . . a mist went up from the earth and watered the whole face of
the ground.

The Hebrew word for "mist" is 'ed (ade). It's a very rare word and appears
only one more time in the whole Bible at at Job 36:27 where it's apparently
speaking of the process of evaporation; which typically produces water in
the form of fog, dew, and humidity; which are very gentle ways to irrigate
young plants and/or bare ground.

Had God brought rain prior to flourishing ground cover, the land would have
eroded something awful and millions of cubic yards of perfectly good dirt
would have washed into creeks, and streams, and rivers to be carried out to
sea where it would be lost in perpetuity. Water in the form of dew, fog,
and/or humidity is a whole lot more gentle on bare ground than falling
water. (California's coastal redwoods obtain a large percentage of their
moisture from fog.)
_
 

Webers.Home

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#19
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Gen 2:7a . . And the Lord God formed a man's body

Mankind's creator didn't give birth to man like women give birth to children
or like baby chicks hatch from eggs; no, humans aren't God's biological
progeny-- humans are God's handiwork like the glass products
manufactured by craftsmen in Murano; where they make things from scratch
using mostly sand for their base material.

Gen 2:7b . . from the dust of the ground

The Hebrew word for "dust" is a bit ambiguous. It essentially refers to
powder, but can also be translated clay, earth, mud, mortar, ashes, and/or
rubbish; viz: the human body wasn't spoken into existence ex nihilo; God
constructed it from already-existing physical matter.

NOTE: Sooner or later most people eventually run afoul of the passage
below so I think it best if we include in our discussion of the creation story.

"I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are thy works; and that
my soul knoweth right well. My substance was not hid from thee, when I
was made in secret, and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.
Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being incomplete; and in thy book all
my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as
yet there was none of them." (Ps 139:14-16)

The Hebrew word for "substance" is `otsem (o'-tsem). It appears in only
three places in the entire Old Testament: Ps 139:15, Deut 8:17, and Job
30:21.

There lacks a consensus on the word's precise meaning. Based upon what I
found in the Strong's Concordance, `otsem apparently refers to the
constitution of something.

The Hebrew word for "curiously wrought" is raqam (raw-kam') which has to
do with skilled needlework, i.e. embroidering, knitting, etc, which produce
multicolored handmade articles rather than made by machines; suggesting
that the human body-- all of its intricacies --was crafted by the hand of God.

The Hebrew words for "lowest parts of the earth" always, and without
exception, refer to the netherworld; viz: underground. (e.g. Ps 63:9, Isa
44:23, Ezek 26:20, Ezek 31:14, Ezek 31:16, Ezek 31:18, Ezek 32:18, and
Ezek 32:24)

Some folk prefer to apply Ps 139:15 to a woman's womb; but I think it best,
and far more sensible, to interpret it as relating to the author's creation
rather than his conception. If so, then we probably should review Adam's
beginning in the book of Genesis because everyone, from first to last, is his
biological progeny; Eve too because she was made from human material
taken from Adam's body.

"And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground" (Gen 2:7)

The Hebrew word for "ground" is 'adamah (ad-aw-maw') which refers to soil.

Well then, from whence came soil?

Some of soil's minerals are derived from the disintegration of meteors that
burn up in the atmosphere-- commonly referred to as star dust. But that
only accounts for a small percentage. The bulk of soil's parent materials
come from the disintegration of the Earth's own rocks.

So: from whence came the Earth's rocks?

All the Earth's rocks are formed underground and end up on or near the
surface via natural processes like volcanism, continental plate subduction,
mighty earthquakes, and erosion, etc.

In a nutshell: The author of Ps 139:14-16 believed that God saw his bodily
constituents while they were not yet even soil but were still underground,
deep in the Earth where they were being formed into rock which would later
be broken down to make soil.

So then, from whence came the physical matter to make rock? Well; that
information is located in the very first two verses of the Bible; which says to
me that in the very beginning God saw every human being that was ever to
exist before even one began to walk the Earth.

God could've-- had He wanted --created h.sapiens from nothing more than
rock dust (cf. Luke 19:37-40 and Matt 3:9) but instead waited till the Earth's
rock dust was amended with organic material.

After rock, and after vegetation, God then created all forms of life that lives
ashore which would of course include not just birds, bugs, and beasts, but
also all forms of life living underground, e.g. night crawlers, grubs, microbes,
and nematodes, etc. When life ashore passes away, its remains are not lost
to oblivion, no, they're valuable for further amending rock dust with even
more organic material.
_
 

Webers.Home

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#20
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Gen 2:7c . . and breathed into it the breath of life,

The transition from soil to soul is made possible by the mysterious force
called the breath of life. If that spoke of atmospheric gases, then it would be
possible to revive a corpse with artificial respiration; so we have to conclude
that the breath of life is an energy vastly more powerful than anything found
in nature.

The word "life" is commonly employed to speak of living things. But what is
it that makes living things alive, alert, and sentient? How is it that all
humans are constructed basically the very same way yet each has a sense of
individuality?

There is no real individuality in products manufactured on an assembly line.
They're all cookie-cutter duplicates and they can all be operated and
maintained by the very same set of instructions.

But people are not like that. We're not cookie-cutter duplicates
manufactured on an assembly line. We're all custom-made specimens with a
mind of our own and a will of our own. In other words: human life isn't
mechanical, rather, it's intelligent, thoughtful, and introspective. And each
one is best reckoned with on an individual basis rather than the oneness of a
Borg hive collective. All this, and more, from the breath of life.

The breath of life isn't unique to humans. Every creature aboard the ark with
Noah was alive due to the breath of life, and every creature that drowned in
the Flood was alive due to the breath of life. (Gen 7:12-23)

Gen 2:7d . . and man became a living soul.

The Hebrew word for "soul" is nephesh (neh'-fesh) which isn't unique to
human beings. Its first appearance is at Gen 1:20-21 in reference to aqua
creatures and winged creatures; again at Gen 1:24 as terra creatures; viz:
cattle, creepy crawlies, and wild beasts; and again in Gen 2:7 as the human
creature; and yet again at Gen 9:10 to classify every living thing aboard
Noah's ark.

Soul is somewhat ambiguous. It can be said that creatures are souls and
also that they have souls. But here in the beginning, nephesh simply refers
to consciousness, individuality, and self awareness.

NOTE: According to Matt 10:28, the body and the soul are perishable.
However; though the body is perishable by any means, the soul is perishable
only by divine means; i.e. the deaths of body and soul aren't necessarily
simultaneous, viz: the soul lives on until such a time as God decides to give
it either a thumb up or a thumb down.
_