The opening scene of Scripture is that of ominous, formless earth cloaked in darkness. As God speaks, the chaos gives way to order, and He fills the emptiness with life. Day by day, God forms the world by His Word. The crown jewel of all creation is the male and female humans who hold the distinction of being the images of God.
Genesis 1 introduces us to God, the main character of the Bible. The darkness does not overcome Him, nor does the chaos confuse Him. As He speaks, chaos comes to order, word by word, line by line, day by day. Nothing He says is denied (1:1-27).
And God is good. The world that His Word brings about is good (1:10, 12, 18, 21, 25, 31). It is morally right. It is beautiful and excellent. Genesis 1 celebrates the success of God in creating a “heavens and the earth” that is full of life.
Humans are the crown jewel of creation. They are not the enemy of the state but the images of God. There is a male version of His image and a female version of His image (1:26-27).
God commands His images to subdue the earth (1:28). They are to continue His work of bringing order out of chaos by applying His Word. But, if they are to complete the task, there needs to be more of them, multitudes of them.
To meet the need, God blesses His male and female images and gives them the ability to multiply. The multiplication of God’s image will not dilute humanity but bring about dominion. The earth needs them to subdue it. The word “subdue” implies that the world will be prone to the original chaos from which it came without them working.
There is plenty of food for the images of God. As they work the earth, they will feed on its fruit (1:29-30).
A lot has gone wrong with our world. We will soon find out how paradise was lost in sin. But the question for us is how do we fix it? The answer to the fix is in how God formed it. God created the world with His Word.
God didn’t form the world in a day, and you aren’t going to fix it in a day.
Neither are you to go at it alone. True, God created man in His image, but God also created man for community. Don’t miss these words. God said, “Let US make man in OUR image after OUR likeness.” As God exists in Trinity, humans exist in duality, male and female. They also exist in plurality as the image of God is multiplied over the face of the earth.
You need the Word of God and you need community as well. It’s not all up to you. It’s not all on you. It never was, and it never will be. But you have a God who has spoken. And He has given you His Word. Treasure it. Apply it. Speak it. Do so day by day and watch darkness give way to light and chaos come to order.
People need the Word of God. The Word of God gives life, brings purpose out of what is otherwise meaningless, and brings chaos into order. Throughout the Bible, we will see that it is God’s Word applied that brings about salvation. Through His Word, God rescued the world from chaos. And it will be through His Word that He will save the sinner from condemnation.
The Word of God is not just a what but a who. Who is the Word of God? John 1 recasts Genesis 1 in the light of Christ.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. John 1:1 (ESV)
John 1:1 (ESV)
Questions to Discuss
According to the passage:
Who created the earth?
What all did God create?
When did God create the world?
Why did God create the world?
Summarize Genesis 1:26-27 in your own words.
Look for something in the world that is out of order. Perhaps it is a chaotic space in your home or trash you find along the street. Please clean it up. Would you help bring it to order? Fix something unusable and make it meaningful. Praise God for the beauty of His creation today. Get out there and breathe a little!