The Genesis account of creation does not depict God creating matter out of nothing (what is traditionally called “creation ex nihlo”). Instead, Genesis narrates God creating this earth out of matter that already existed. The focus is not on the grander universe but only an account of this earth which serves as a backdrop for the covenant God will make with His people on this earth. Reading the Bible narrative from the perspective and worldview of the Bible writers can clarify our understanding and enhance our appreciation of scripture. Ultimately, and by so doing, we see more clearly the why of scripture: to teach us of the covenants of God.
The creation narrative in Genesis was not written to provide a how-to manual for how the earth was created. The creation narrative instead serves as a backdrop to the covenant that we are expected to keep.
For many, the Old Testament is a challenge to understand. Layers of changes of time, culture, people, institutions, and language seem to act as stumbling blocks to our understanding of and engagement with the Old Testament.
But not to despair. There are many valuable resources that can clear some of the fog of confusion, shining lights of understanding and purposefulness on the Old Testament scriptures that still are as valuable and relevant today as when they were first delivered.
We all have difficult, challenging, painful experiences in life. Though never pleasant, these experiences can teach us perspective, love, humility, endurance, patience, and ultimately, how to be more like God.
When we remember that no matter how far under we’ve been pulled in our drowning suffering, Jesus has descended even further so that He can flow underneath us, run below us, and support us every step of the way as we are carved into the spiritual image of God.
What are our trophies that we discard so that we might turn ourselves to Jesus?
Why is the Old Testament an Old Testament? And what do covenants have to do with it?