In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
In the beginning God.
In church this past Sunday, we began a study of the book of Genesis. I just love the first chapters of Genesis. Not because it is a cute bedtime story about how the earth came into existence, but because I truly believe this is how the earth came into existence. (I also, believe that science confirms it more than it disproves it. But that is a debate for another day.)
Anyway, In the beginning GOD.
I don’t know how many times I have read these first chapters of the Bible, but isn’t wonderful there is always something new to glean from God’s word? I mean we can never know it all. God is always speaking to us and teaching us when we spend time with him. That is just amazing to me.
This time I learned about when the book of Genesis was written. And this is what I want to share with you.
Most scholars agree that Moses is the author of the first 5 books of the bible. These books composed what the Jewish people called, “The Torah” or “The Law.” The word Genesis in its English context means, “The origin,” or “the beginning.”
The context in which the book of Genesis was written is so interesting and honestly I had never really thought about it before. You see, Moses lived quite a while after the creation of the world. He also had a very different formal education. If you know the story of Moses, you know that he was born in Egypt into a home of Hebrew slaves, who where under a decree that all male children should be killed at birth. His birth was hidden as well as his early days of life. When he could be concealed no longer his mother hid him in a basket on the Nile River. There he was found by non-other than Pharaoh’s daughter. She adopted the baby and then hired a Hebrew woman to be Moses nurse (who was actually his real mother.) He was raised in the house of the Pharaoh and received his education in the land of Egypt and was raised to worship the Egyptian Gods. If you would like to read it for yourself, the story of Moses begins in the Book of Exodus.
So, Moses wrote the first books of the bible, but let’s also take note of when he wrote them. Without getting all bungled up in the theological debates, we can pretty safely say that Moses wrote the book of Genesis after the Israelite’s had left Egypt and where living in the wilderness in Sinai.
You may be wondering why is this important? Hang in there, I’m getting to that.
This is why it is important: Because the Israelite’s were living in very uncertain times.
Can we not agree that today, we also live in very uncertain times? There is much to concern us. We live in a time of terror both domestic and abroad, we live in a time of economic instability, we live in a time where even our own freedom to practice our faith and our person-hood is coming into question and under attack.
And it is here that we need comfort, we need assurance, and we need to have confidence. We like the Israelite people can find that in God’s word. And in the beginning.
I am just going to leave you with these first few words from Genesis.
1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2 Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.
3 And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. 4 God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness.5 God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day.
Think about this:
In the beginning God created.
In the beginning God spoke.
In the beginning God created light, and he separated it from the darkness.
I don’t know about you, but I get comfort in that. I get comfort in knowing that God was not only there before it all began, but that he orchestrates and reveals himself to us when we need Him the most. He is involved. He must care.