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Genesis 1:6-19 Set Apart

The Book of Genesis  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  1:00:13
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Set Apart: Creation days 2-4 Set Apart: Creation days 2-4 Jake Lopez / General The Book of Genesis / Creation; Day / Genesis 1:6–19   Genesis 1:6-19 Set Apart:Creation days 2-4 Intro How many people love to look at the stars on a warm summer night? I’m sure everyone has done this before and isn’t just amazing to behold that which The Lord has created? Early last fall, when we were travelling out to John Day and teaching Sunday nights a couple of times we stopped out in the Brogan area on the way home. One night was very memorable because it was a new moon and there was no light around us at all except for the stars. Everyone of us was blown away at how many more stars were visible and how majestic the sky was. Psalm 19:1 NKJV The heavens declare the glory of God; And the firmament shows His handiwork. I think sometimes it’s so healthy to go out under the stars and just to remember how God created all of this for his good pleasure but also for us to enjoy as well. 2 out of the 3 days of creation that we are going to look Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:35 PM January 28, 2018. 1 at today has to do with the creation of the sky, the cosmos, and the lights that God put in them. Then, when you couple those two days with day1 we find that God spent half of his time creating focused on the universe itself and that shows us the greatness of our God and how much there is to behold in our Universe. I was listening to a teaching of Damian Kyle, a Calvary chapel pastor from Modesto CA, and he said something that I thought was very profound and useful for today and that’s this. Ya God spent a lot of time creating, but the whole Bible is about God relating to man and not his creation. Day 2 The Firmament Day 2 The Firmament [Gen 1:6 NKJV] Then God said, "Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters." [Gen 1:7-8 NKJV] 7 Thus 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. 8 And God called the firmament Heaven. So the evening and the morning were the second day. Word Etymology Firmament Hebrew word for a beaten metal plate, or a bow. This use of the word has brought criticism against the Bible pointing out that the Bible has agreed with pagan philosophies that the earth has a solid sky or a solid dome built over it. Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:35 PM January 28, 2018. 2 Flat earth enthusiasts love this because it describes a cosmology that fits their beliefs. This is one of these words in the Bible where it is important to dive into the Hebrew, look at the root word and also to see how this word is used other places in the Bible. Before we look at the root word however, I want to point out how other translations of the Bible translate the word for firmament :: Raqi’a. NLT: Space NIV: Vault NASB: Expanse ESV: Expanse KJV: Firmament So why the variety of english words? Well the reason the King James Bible uses the word Firmament is because they grabbed that term from the Latin Vulgate Bible where it uses the Latin word firmamentum. It was used in Latin as defined as such: strengthening, prop, the main point, support. This is very interesting to me because of the way that the Lord uses the firmament that we will see in the next verse so keep that in mind. Now let's talk about how this was used in the Hebrew. Regardless of how this is translated into the english the Hebrew word is the same, even when viewed across the various manuscripts. The root work for Raci’a is Rq’a (rachah), this is a word describing something spread out thin or spread out. These are great word pictures because when we think about how vast the sky is, it is spread out thin. This is Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:35 PM January 28, 2018. 3 very interesting to me because we know from measurements maid in the upper atmosphere that our atmosphere gets thinner and thinner the higher you go, so this word here is to spread out and make thin. Metal Working Example So why the word RaQi’a? Well this process is the same way a metal shield would be made, it would be beat out thin with a hammer to spread the material out. God is trying to communicate how our world is formed in terms man would understand. Now granted, this terminology would mean much more to a metalsmith that it does to most of us today. The Bible does this regularly in using animal husbandry or farming to describe spiritual truths. Firmament Takes Shape With all that said, I’m not suggesting that this is metaphoric necessarily and here’s why look at verse 7. [Gen 1:7 NKJV] Thus 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. God is using the firmament to divide the waters. Remember last week that the earth was void and without form, that it was just a mass of water. God made the firmament for this purpose and it was to divide the waters. Now at this point how do we know what the firmament looks like or what shape is it in, as far as we know, it’s just a flat plane sitting in between or in the midst of waters, but it’s dividing them. Well this is where the word for Raqi’a comes in very Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:35 PM January 28, 2018. 4 descriptive. Since the firmament is described as a thin metal covering or a bow, now we know that the firmament has curvature to it. So we know that it’s not just a flat surface pushing up the waters above but rather it’s in a curved pattern. Firmaments Purpose Now remember when I said the Latin word was defined as having strength and support? It would take something very strong indeed to support a bunch of water over head. Also, we are told by science that space is a vacuum. Hmm well have you ever thought about that? It might be true, but if space is a vacuum, it could be that God has also used the firmament to divide the vacuum of space from the atmosphere that have on our planet. Well you might be thinking, what are you talking about water overhead, there is no water over head, this is just a fabricated story. Well before you get to excited, you can go onto Nasa’s website and read about articles talking about water in space. In fact I read an article just last week where Nasa has admitted that the universe is full of water in various forms. They are even doing studies where they might have found larger amounts of water not attached to planets but just in huge bodies of water itself. I’m not sure if anyone really knows where the waters above the Firmament are. Henry Morris II in his commentary on Genesis, suggests that the water was surrounding the earth and Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:35 PM January 28, 2018. 5 that it made a blanket that insulated the earth making the planet a worldwide tropical environment. There might be some credence to this because they have found wooly mammoths frozen in ice but that had tropical vegetation still in their stomachs. Henry’s theory is that during Noah’s flood the water that was surrounding the earth came down as precipitation helping to flood the earth. We will talk about this more in detail when we get to Genesis 6 and 7. Now I have no clue where this firmament exists if it is indeed somewhat of a barrier, it could very well be at the edge of the universe for all I know, but we can take God’s word for what it’s worth and simple take it for what it says, and that is, the firmament divided the waters. The other purpose of the firmament is to create space for life to exist, and I think that’s the main point of it. How The Firmament Was Made This is not a fabricated story, but rather the account of fabrication. Remember in day one, God created light by his mouth? Well now we see a different Hebrew word for make or made, and that’s ‘Asah’, this word means to manufacture or make by more practical means. Again very interesting that the firmament is describe as a metal that is hammered out thin. This also could explain and show how God made it, that it was more of a laborious process and that he used his hands to create it rather than his words. This totally reminds me of how Jesus was a carpenter Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:35 PM January 28, 2018. 6 on this earth. Isn’t fascinating that the one job he chose to do was to build stuff. So cool. Now here’s the real definition, look how God himself defines the firmament in verse (8), [Gen 1:8 NKJV] And God called the firmament Heaven. So the evening and the morning were the second day. As we talked last week, Heaven is almost always used to describe The abode of God and the angels, the sky, or outer space. So God used the firmament to divide the waters thus making the sky or our atmosphere. I think this is best way to describe and the best use of the word heaven, because in scripture the firmament is always described as something that is seen. Can we see the dwelling place of God? - no. Can we see a metal dome above our earth? - no. So it would seem that the best definition of it is our atmosphere as a whole. Application: How do we apply Day 2 of creation? Well God is Holy, God is greater than his creation and he created a world in which his dwelling place was divided from the material world. God The Father is always described as being above or looking down on his creation and this is a big part of what the firmament plays. This shows his Holiness and his greatness. When we get into the creation of Adam, we are going to see God come and walk with Adam. So even though God has a seperate dwelling place, his intention was always to commune with man in which he made in his own image. Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:35 PM January 28, 2018. 7 Now mankind has also created a divide between God and man and that’s sin. Because of our sin we have created a “firmament” or space between us and God. God is Holy and cannot be in the presence of sin. The good news is though that Jesus Christ came to be the bridge between fallen man and our perfect and undefiled father. Jesus said that I am The way The Truth and the Life, no one comes to the Father except through me! Just as the Heavens above are higher than imaginable so the distance we are from God without forgiveness of sin. This distance between us cannot be traveled, nor made right any other way except though your faith put in Jesus Christ and him alone. But Thank God that he came to redeem man to God the Father and that we would be able to walk with God in peace once again - Hallelujah! Day 3 Oceans, Lands and Plants Day 3 Oceans, Lands and Plants [Gen 1:9 NKJV] Then God said, "Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together into one place, and let the dry [land] appear"; and it was so. [Gen 1:10 NKJV] And God called the dry [land] Earth, and the gathering together of the waters He called Seas. And God saw that [it was] good. [Gen 1:11 NKJV] Then God said, "Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb [that] yields seed, [and] the fruit Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:35 PM January 28, 2018. 8 tree [that] yields fruit according to its kind, whose seed [is] in itself, on the earth"; and it was so. [Gen 1:12 NKJV] And the earth brought forth grass, the herb [that] yields seed according to its kind, and the tree [that] yields fruit, whose seed [is] in itself according to its kind. And God saw that [it was] good. [Gen 1:13 NKJV] So the evening and the morning were the third day. So Now we have the waters above the earth or the celestial waters. And we have the water that stayed down at ground level. Genesis is now going to focus on the creation of the terrestrial or that of the planet earth. One theme that keeps jumping out to me as we go through Genesis is the division or separation of things. We’ve seen the separation of light making night and day, We’ve seen the separation of waters thus creating an earth or an atmosphere around the earth rather. The Earth Surface Now we see the separation of water from dry ground. Now verse (9) this dry ground is just that, dry. We see God causes this to happen with his words again. This no doubt is supernatural for dry ground to come forth from water and not be wet. Now remember we are talking about a literal day, so it would obviously be impossible for dirt to dry out in one day. This does not mean that this didn’t all happen in one day though. There are two other examples in The Bible of God separating water and making the ground perfectly dry, Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:35 PM January 28, 2018. 9 do you guys know what those two examples are? Crossing of red sea and crossing of the Jordan River. Now in Genesis 6,7 when we get to the flood, the word says that it took 150 days for the earth to dry which seems like a pretty plausible number, so for the earth to have land appear in one day and for it to be dry is no doubt supernatural. God’s Purposeful Creation God has purpose in everything he creates and we will see this pattern throughout creation, but look at what he names them in verse (10). Naming things is obviously common to us, but it’s because we got that pattern from our heavenly father. Naming things shows purpose, meaning God just didn’t make trivial things that didn’t matter. I think this is somewhat obvious, but God has perfect purpose in the things he creates. I contrast this with us and how sometimes we create or do things that doesn’t really serve a purpose or we do things that are detrimental to us or that fulfills a negative purpose. But not God, his creation has perfect meaning and purpose as well as design. Grass, Trees, Fruit and Seeds In verse 11, we see the first creation of living things and that is grass, trees and the ability for them to propagate themselves through their seeds. I think it’s important to point out how much the creation account differs from the account of evolution. Here we see that life began in the dust of the earth. Some evolutionary theories have life starting in some Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:35 PM January 28, 2018. 10 sort of primordial soup that was struck by lightning thus sparking some sort of lifeform. These lifeforms would have made it into water somehow where they began their evolutionary process of growing in the water. Then over the course this lifeform turned into some sort of amaeba which after many more millions of years adapted the ability to move on to land and then, well you know where this is going. This no doubt is very different that what God created on day 3. Notice that according to the Bible, the first mention of life are things that we recognize today, Grass, seeds, Trees, vegetation and fruit. There is not even a mention of anything remotely close to adaptation or the process of evolution. Seeds: We also are shown that these creations were created with the ability to propagate themselves and multiply, meaning that they were intended to continue as they began. The whole purpose of something multiplying is so that it will continue, not that it would become something totally different than what it started out to be. both verses 11, 12 talk about their ‘kind’, meaning that a seed of one kind doesn’t produce a lifeform of another kind. We have never witnessed a seed producing a different species when it matures. What we witness in nature agrees with the biblical record. Amazing Creation of Seeds but make notice seeds didn’t come first, which also Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:35 PM January 28, 2018. 11 shows no evolutionary process, that is, a first thing needed to be created before offspring could. Also, the dormant nature of seeds. How can a seed lay dormant until the perfect situation comes about? What is the cause that makes it spring into life again? Example of shrimp in Idaho desert. 10-15 years ago - bioligists. God called this process of lifeforms multiplying good. I find it fascinating that he calls this good but didn’t make such a claim about the firmament. Abundance and Multiplication So in nature we see this process and multiplying in fact we serve a God who loves abundance. So the things that he declares good, he makes a lot of it. Remember there is only one firmament, but how many trees are there? How many people throughout time? How many stars are there? God likes to have a lot of the good things. According to the La Times, in 2016 18,000 new species of plants and animals were discovered. Wow! You might say what a banner year, but guess what, we average 16k-18k new species discovered every year in the modern scientific era. No doubt we are still discovering God’s vast abundance all the time. God also wants the same for you, the things that are good for you, God wants an abundance of that in your life. God wants to fill your life with abundant heavenly things. I’m not teaching prosperity doctrine here, but even the things that seem bad in our life, God is using Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:35 PM January 28, 2018. 12 them to fill your life with abundance of good things. You who are parents understand this. Don’t you just want your kids to have abundance? Material things are fine and good, but that’s not what I’m talking about, I’m talking about Joy, virtue, health and holiness. That’s what you want for your kids, and regardless if you are a parent or not, that’s what God The Father wants for you. Day 4 The Light Holders Day 4 The Light Holders [Gen 1:14 NKJV] Then God said, "Let there be lights in the firmament of the heavens to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs and seasons, and for days and years; [Gen 1:15 NKJV] "and let them be for lights in the firmament of the heavens to give light on the earth"; and it was so. [Gen 1:16 NKJV] Then God made two great lights: the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night. [He made] the stars also. [Gen 1:17 NKJV] God set them in the firmament of the heavens to give light on the earth, [Gen 1:18 NKJV] and to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness. And God saw that [it was] good. [Gen 1:19 NKJV] So the evening and the morning were the fourth day. The Hebrews used the zodiac very extensively, in fact all of their feasts are driven by the full moon or new Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:35 PM January 28, 2018. 13 moon in the appropriate season. God gave them this gift for calendar purposes, holidays or Feasts, and prophecy. Prophetic signs God gave his people prophetic signs in his word for his people to watch for in the stars. We know that the wise men knew of the sign of the star and were able to follow it to Jesus. They knew from the Jewish influence that it would lead them to the Messiah. Matthew 2:2 NKJV saying, “Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the East and have come to worship Him.” Another example of this is The Prophecy in Joel predicting The Day of The Lord a period of time in which the earth would be judged before Jesus’ return to earth. Joel 2:31 NKJV The sun shall be turned into darkness, And the moon into blood, Before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord. When we start talking about watching the stars, and looking for signs, I don’t know about you, but I start feeling uneasy. This is because of the Bible passages warning us not to be involved in astrology. That means we are not to seek guidance from fortune telling, horoscopes or any other non biblical resource. Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:35 PM January 28, 2018. 14 Why would God tell us in creation that he has given us the stars for signs in creation but then commanded us not to practice divination in the stars later. Well it’s a simple answer, God gave these markers or signs, that we would know when special events were unfolding, but these are also given in scripture and backed by the word. The practice of sorcery and divination is Satan’s attempt to pervert a godly thing and make it corrupt. This is satan’s pattern. So the difference in the two. God gives us few signs in the heavens and they are mainly for the Jewish people and are backed by scripture. Divination is seeking direction from the stars that is extra biblical meaning that it has nothing to do with direction from God. I want to warn you brothers and sisters, if you refer or look at Horoscopes I want to tell you right now that you don’t want to get involved with that. The word is very clear warning to stay clear of this error. If you want to read more about that in scriptures read Deut 18:9-14 Now because the word says that these lights, meaning the stars and planets are in the firmament of Heaven (15) It seems like the firmament would include out space because the stars and planets are kept within it. Special Stars Psalm 147:4 NKJV He counts the number of the stars; He calls them all by name. Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:35 PM January 28, 2018. 15 As I mentioned earlier, even the stars that God has created have specific purpose. So much that he gives each one of them a name. How many billions of stars exist? So in verse 16,17 The word says that God created the Sun and Moon and put them in the same firmament as the stars, again showing the vastness of the firmament. I love how God creates lights to be enjoyed by both day and night. God himself called day 4 good. In Closing In days 1-4 in creation we have seen God separate different things. We have seen him separate light from dark, divide the waters into waters above and waters below, and divide the oceans from dry land. We also know from the new testament that there will be a final day of judgment when God will divide the sheep from the goats or the believers from the non believers. God desires to divide his perfect creation from that which Satan wants to pervert. Just as talked about earlier when Satan perverted the use of the stars of heaven, he too wants to pervert you, that is to twist the good things The Lord has blessed us with to use them for evil. Right after those verses I shared, we find these verses in Deuteronomy. Deuteronomy 18:13–15 NKJV You shall be blameless before the Lord your God. For these nations which you will dispossess listened to Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:35 PM January 28, 2018. 16 soothsayers and diviners; but as for you, the Lord your God has not appointed such for you. “The Lord your God will raise up for you a Prophet like me from your midst, from your brethren. Him you shall hear, You see God calls you to holiness, he calls you to be blameless, he is calling you to righteousness and that’s what it means to be sanctified, to be set apart. Now the only way we can do this is because of Jesus and that’s what Moses points out in verse 15 of Deuteronomy. The power to live a set apart life or a sanctified life is found only in Jesus. We don’t have to do anything, we don’t have to strive to be perfect or to live a life without blemish or fault, no instead we need to repent, believe, and then give our will over to him and he will do the rest. Now just like creation, God wants to do a good work, remember he said that his creation is good. Well you too are his creation and he wants good things in your life. Psalm 23:1–3 NKJV The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul; Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:35 PM January 28, 2018. 17 He leads me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake. God wants to bring peace in your life, just as the Psalm says but we have to come to that place of not wanting. A place where his will is done and not our own. God has peace for you and he wants to restore your soul. I encourage you to let him, let him in and let him do the work and see what good things The Lord has for you. Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:35 PM January 28, 2018. 18
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