A Creative God Does It His Way

winecellarOne of the communicable attributes of God is creativity.  Our God is a creative God, and since we bear His image, we are creative beings.  It is an attribute of God that He has woven into our being.

Now we don’t have the ability to create like he does.  He creates from nothing, ex nihilo (Hebrews 11:3).  Last time I created something, I had to go to the store to buy some materials and then spend hours putting it together.

Looking at the way God creates reveals a lot about his character.  It also sheds light on the way he created the universe in which we live.  If God is the same yesterday, today and forever, then how He created as Jesus, would give us a glimpse into how He created before time.

Creating Wine from Water

When Jesus began His ministry, the first miracle he performed was the turning of the water into wine at the wedding in Canaan.

His mother was the host of the wedding.  A first century Jewish wedding was a community event.  As was the custom of the time, a wedding feast lasted seven days.  It was a significant community event.

The wedding at Canaan was going well until Mary heard that they had run out of wine.  She immediately goes to Jesus and he offers his help.  She instructs the servants to do whatever he tells them and she hurries off to manage the next wedding.

Jesus Creates

Jesus then instructs the servants to go and fill six stone jars with water.  Each jar would hold between 20 and 30 gallons of water.  When they returned, he tells them to serve the guest at the wedding.

When they do as instructed, the water becomes wine as it is drawn out of the jars and served to the guest.  The water that has been turned into wine is of the finest quality that the bridegroom questions the reason for keeping the good wind to the end of the festivities.

Wine Has A History

Good wine requires a slow process.  The grapes must be carefully grown in just the right soil with just the right conditions to produce the best grapes for wine.  Once the grapes are harvested, their juice would be collected and allowed to ferment.

Fermentation of wine takes several weeks for fermentation.  Vintage, quality wine could sit for years before consumption.

The Wine Tells the Wrong Story

The bridegroom tasting the wine thought this wine was of high quality, possibly a vintage old wine.  When observers tasted the wine, they drew the logical conclusions.  The grapes had been grown, harvested, pressed, fermented, bottled, stored and delivered in order to be consumed.  This would have been a minimum of a year process.  If the wine was a vintage quality, decades of time could be assumed.

The wine that was drank at the wedding tells the attendants a story that was not true.  The observers would have came to the wrong conclusion about the age of the wine based purely on the story the wine told.

If you could do modern day chemical analysis on the wine, you could determine the type of grape, the region the grape was grown, and possibly the time-frame when the grapes were harvested.  The observations and science of the wine would tell a significantly different story than reality.  That which appears to have age, actually was new.

The Wine Had a Purpose

When God creates, he does so with purpose.  The wine that God created in Canaan was for a purpose.  It would have done not good for Jesus to create grape juice and wait for it to ferment.  It would have defeated the purpose.  There would have been no reason to create.

God creates with Purpose!

The Creation Tells the Same Story

When you observe the size of the universe and the distant starts and galaxies  we would conclude that the universe is billions of light years old.  After all, it would take the billions of years for light to travel from the stars to our planet in order for us to see them.

When God creates, He does so with purpose.

Genesis 1 tells us that the stars were created for the purpose of signs, seasons, days and years.  In order for the starts to serve their purpose, they needed to be created with the light already at the earth.

In order for us to see the stars of Orion’s belt, not only did God create the stars, he also created the rays of light between the star and our planet.  It is this light from these distant stars that allow them to fulfill their God-Designed purpose.

The Age of Things

So, is the universe old or young?  Is it 6,000 years old or 13.7 billion years old?

The answer is YES.

The earth was created 6,000 years ago, but was not created new.  It was created old.  It was created with age.  It was created to fulfill its purpose.

When Adam was created, he was a full grown adult.  He had no parents, but if you conducted a DNA test, you could determine the DNA of his Mom and Dad.

If you took a bore sample from the tree in the middle of the garden, the tree God commanded Adam and Eve not to eat from, it would have rings.  Each ring represents a year.  But the tree was created new, but it has age.  Why?  To fulfill its purpose of bearing fruit.

Doesn’t That Make God A Liar?

So if God created the earth to look old, but it was in fact young, isn’t that deceptive?  Isn’t that a lie?

The lie would be for God to create the earth young with age and to tell us in fact the earth is old.  That would be a lie.

But what God has done in the Scriptures is tell us over and over again, the earth is young.  It just looks old.

By listening to the only eyewitness of the event, we can understand the truth of the origins of the universe and all that is in it.  In six days he created the universe and all that is in it and on the seventh day he rested.

Is Genesis One Six Literal 24 hour days?

Genesis one gives us the account of creation.  It is general description of the activity of God at the beginning of time.  It is our point of view that the days found in Genesis 1 are literal 24 hour days and that this is best defended by the text.

It is also our point of view that this discussion carries significant theological implications.  If either the “Gap theory” or some variation of “Theistic Evolution” is used to explain the age of the earth and to marry Scripture to Science, a key theological problem is immediately introduced.  Either mechanism requires death as a key ingredient.  As organisms die, their bones become fossils buried in layers of sediment.  It is the evidence of these fossils that provide a key piece of the Scientific puzzle and argument.

The apostle Paul, speaking under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, says in Romans 5 that it is because of Adam’s sin that death has come to all men.  In Romans 8 we are told that all of creation groans because of Adam’s sin and that one day it will be restored.  Death could not be part of the physical world until Adam’s sin.  The theological implications here are great and are beyond the scope of this post.

Six literal 24 hour days?

Exodus 20:9-11 is the first mention of the creation after Genesis 2.  It is an interesting passage because it clearly defines for us God’s view of the creation week.  As he was personally giving Moses the Ten Commandments and all of the Law, the ONLY eye witness to the creation event, gives us the purpose for creating in the time frame described in Genesis.

God says that we should honor the Sabbath day because, “in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day. . . .”  If the days in Genesis 1 were to be understood anyway other than 24 hour days like you and I experience, then the example of a work week and our use of a day to rest is lost.  If Genesis 1 describes long periods of time, then Exodus 20 makes no sense.

Literal 24 hour days defended

Here are several key points as to why Genesis 1 is referring to 24 hour days and not long periods of time.

  • Yom, the Hebrew word for day, is used over 2000 times in the OT, over 1900 times it is used to refer to a literal 24 hour day.
  • When an ordinal, like first, is used with the word Yom, it most frequently refers to a 24 hour day.  There are exceptions, but they are few.
  • In ancient Hebrew culture, evening marked the beginning of a new day.  For example, Sabbath was observed from sundown Friday evening to sundown Saturday evening.  Therefore, to the ancients, an evening and morning represented one 24 hour day.

Individually, these points do not make a compelling case for days in Genesis being literal 24 hour time periods.  However, when combined together, the argument is hard to deny.