The Bible opens with the revelation that God created everything. “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth,” says the Bible (Gen. 1:1, NRSV alternate reading). When God speaks, everything, including the cosmos, comes into being out of nothing. God is the single author of creation. In conclusion, it’s not a fluke or the work of a lesser god; it’s God expressing himself.
What was God doing before Creation?
When asked what God was doing before creation, Saint Augustine offered two explanations. Jokingly, he said that God was preparing Hell for anybody who posed such concerns to the Almighty. Taking the matter seriously, he pointed out that there was no time before God created, rendering the subject moot.
God made space and time at the same moment he made the universe and the earth. There was no time before eternity. God is a timeless deity, and time started with His creation of the cosmos.
Even yet, we must not suppose that God lacked purpose before the beginning of time. Before the creation of the world, God loved and planned for it, according to the Bible. Before He was betrayed, Jesus prayed to the Father, saying:
“Father, I desire that they also whom You gave Me may be with Me where I am, that they may behold My glory which You have given Me; for You loved Me before the foundation of the world (John 17:24).
The Creation Story
Creating a world requires effort. The might of God’s handiwork is clearly demonstrated in the first chapter of the Bible. God creates worlds by speaking them into existence. Furthermore, He provides humanity with its first, unmistakable model of how power should be exercised.
Take note of the order of creation. God’s first three acts of creation divide the formless chaos into the spheres of heaven (or sky), the ocean, and the earth.
The First Day
God creates light on the first day and divides it from the night, defining day and night.
“Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day.” – Genesis 1:3 – 5
The Second Day
On the second day, he divides the waters and makes the sky.
“And God said, “Let there be a dome in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters from the waters.” So God made the dome and separated the waters that were under the dome from the waters that were above the dome. And it was so. God called the dome Sky. And there was evening and there was morning, the second day.” – Genesis 1:9-10
The Third Day
On the first portion of the third day, he partitions the land from the water.
“And God said, “Let the waters under the sky be gathered together into one place, and let the dry land appear.” And it was so. God called the dry land Earth, and the waters that were gathered together he called Seas. And God saw that it was good.” – Genesis 1:9-10
All of them are absolutely necessary for making it through what comes next. God then sets about populating his newly created realms. In the remaining hours of Day 3, he creates plants.
“Then God said, “Let the earth put forth vegetation: plants yielding seed, and fruit trees of every kind on earth that bear fruit with the seed in it.” And it was so. The earth brought forth vegetation: plants yielding seed of every kind, and trees of every kind bearing fruit with the seed in it. And God saw that it was good. And there was evening and there was morning, the third day.” – Genesis 1:11–13
The Fourth Day
God makes the stars, moon, and sun on day four.
“And God said, “Let there be lights in the dome of the sky to separate the day from the night; and let them be for signs and for seasons and for days and years, and let them be lights in the dome of the sky to give light upon the earth.” And it was so. God made the two great lights. The greater light rules the day and the lesser light rules the night, and the stars. God set them in the dome of the sky to give light upon the earth. Additionally, it is to rule over the day and over the night and to separate the light from the darkness. And God saw that it was good. And there was evening and there was morning, the fourth day.” – Genesis 1: 14 – 19
The Fifth Day
On the fifth day, God creates marine and avian life that would not have been possible without the land vegetation that came before it.
“And God said, “Let the waters bring forth swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the dome of the sky.” So God created the great sea monsters and every living creature that moves, of every kind, with which the waters swarm, and every winged bird of every kind. And God saw that it was good. God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.” And there was evening and there was morning, the fifth day.” – 1: Genesis 20 – 23
The Sixth Day
It was God’s plan all along to populate the planet with all kinds of creatures.
“And God said, “Let the earth bring forth living creatures of every kind: cattle and creeping things and wild animals of the earth of every kind.” And it was so. God made the wild animals of the earth of every kind, and the cattle of every kind, and everything that creeps upon the ground of every kind. And God saw that it was good.” – Genesis 1: 24 – 25
On the sixth day, God also created Adam and Eve in his likeness so they might commune with Him. The whole world and all its inhabitants were placed under their care, and they were given responsibility for cultivating and tending to them as a sign of God’s favor.
“Then God said, “Let us make humankind in our image, according to our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the wild animals of the earth,d and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.”
So God created humankind in his image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.
God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the air and over every living thing that moves upon the earth.” God said, “See, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit; you shall have them for food. And to every beast of the earth, and to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, everything that has the breath of life, I have given every green plant for food.” And it was so. God saw everything that he had made, and indeed, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.” Genesis 1: 26-31
The Seventh Day
Having completed the task of creation, God rested on the seventh day, which he then consecrated by making it holy.
“Thus the heavens and the earth, and all the host of them, were finished. And on the seventh day, God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made” – Genesis 2:1-3