(Adapted from the Book of Genesis 1:1 - 2:2)
1In the beginning, before the start of time, there was only God--the great, indescribable force which transcends all being. Then, with the intensity of a big bang, God released the energy of the universe and created the heavens and the earth. 2The earth was without form and void--a senseless mixture of unbound atoms--and darkness was upon the face of the deep; but the Spirit of God was present, as wind moving over the face of the waters.
3And God said, "Let there be light"; and there was light--the earth was aglow with the miraculous energy of God. 4And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. 5God called the light Day and the darkness Night. But God's day, as the Bible states elsewhere, is like thousands of years in the time of earth. Just as time slows when matter approaches the speed of light, so does God's infinite energy transcend all time. So--with the creation of the Universe and the gift of light--there was morning and there was evening, and the first of God's days was over.
6And God said, "Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters of the Universe, and let it separate the waters from the waters and be a framework for the Universe." 7And God made the firmament and separated the unformed waters above and below the firmament. And it was so. 8And God called the firmament Heaven. And there was morning and there was evening, the second of God's days.
9And God said, "Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together in one place, and let dry land appear." And so it was on each planet throughout the Universe. 10God called the dry land on our planet Earth, and the waters that were gathered together he called Seas. And God saw that it was good. 11And God said, "Let the earth put forth vegetation--plants yielding seed, and fruit trees bearing fruit in which is their seed, each according to its own kind, upon the earth." And it was so. First God created the smallest plants. And from them God created more and more complex plants--until the most complicated plants, the most magnificent hybirds, had evolved by God's creation from the simplest of life. 12The earth brought forth vegetation, each according to its own kind. And God saw that it was good. 13And there was evening and there was morning, and the third of God's days had ended.
14And God said, "Let there be lights in the firmament of the heavens to separate the day from the night; and let them be signs for seasons and for days and for years, 15and let them be lights in the firmament of the heavens to give light upon the earth." And it was so. 16And God made the two great lights--the sun and the moon--the greater to rule the day and the lesser to rule the night; and God also made all the other stars to light all the planets in the Universe. 17And God set them in the firmament of the heavens to give light upon the earth, to rule over the day and the night, and to separate the light from the darkness. And God saw that it was good. 19And there was morning and there was evening, the fourth of God's days.
20And God said, "Let the waters bring forth swarms of living creatures and let birds fly above the earth across the firmament of the heavens." 21So God created every living creature which moves, with which the waters swarm, and every winged bird according to its own kind. From the simplest, he created the more complex; until all the creatures of te sea and air had evolved. And God saw that it was good. 22And God blessed them all, saying "Be fruitful and multiply and fill the waters and seas, and let birds multiply on the earth." 23And there was evening and there was morning, God's fifth day.
24And God said, "Let the earth bring forth living creatures according to their kinds: cattle and creeping things and beasts of th earth." And it was so. From the smallest ocean life God created the simplest of land animals--the amphibians, and from them were create the reptiles, and from them were created the mammals. 25So God made the beasts of the earth and the cattle and everything that crawls upon the ground, each according to its own kind. The greatest of animals evolved from the simplest by the miracle of God's creation. And God saw that this was good. 26Then God said, "Let us make people in our image, after our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth." 27So God took the most complex of the animals, and from it were created more and even more God-like creatures, until finally had evolved a species that was truly in God's image. The human race, male and female, evolved into the image of God through the miracle of God's creation. 28And God blessed the people, and God said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the world and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living thing that moves upon the earth." 29And God said, "Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed which is upon the face of the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit; you shall have them for food.
30"And to every beast of the earth, and to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, I have given every green plant for food." 31And God looked out on everything that was made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth of God's days.
1Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. 2And on the seventh day God finished the work of creation. God rested on the seventh day from all the work which was completed. And this was the miracle of creation.
David M. Burrow
I believe that, were the Book of Genesis written today, this is how it would have appeared. The writers of the Old Testament may well have been inspired by the Spirit of God, but they had to explain creation to the people in terms of what was understood about the universe in their own time, thousands of years ago.
Knowledge has changed much from the time of the ancient Middle East to the 1980s. The writers of Genesis could not have anticipated an infinite universe of many planets, an earth with many races of people and many religions, a man as important to history as Jesus Christ, a world of science and industry, a continent such as North America, or a language such as English. Our modern world has gained a more complete understanding--a clearer view of the world based on the principles of science.
Many refuse to accept the laws of science. Even today there are those who do not believe the theory of evolution should even be taught. They feel science contradicts the holy and sacred teachings of the Bible. But, isn't it clear that it was God who created science? Wouldn't God be pleased to have us try to understand the miracle of creation in terms of what we know today?
Science doesn't deny divine creation. It simply fills in the blanks that our holy writings have left us. Certainly, in the future therewill be new discoveries that will further expand on what science teaches us today. This is not evil; it is not a denial of God It is simply the fulfilling of God's work.
Scientists and philosophers are to our age what the prophets were to the ancient world. They combine all the knowledge of the world and help us to learn all there is to know about the universe. Through them we gain new insights about ourselves, our world, and our God.
If God created us in the divine image, wouldn't God want us to study and learn more about our world? Wouldn't God want us to keep our minds open? Wouldn't God rather we lived in the modern world, instead of a foggy, uncertain past? To any thinking person, the answer is certain and clear--the answer is yes.
David M. Burrow
Januarry 18, 1982
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This is dedicated to Mr. Burrow's father, George Burrow, who like almost all good scientists believed that only God could have created the marvels of our scientific world. In a sermon George Burrow gave as a lay preacher in the 1950s he said, "I have found that my scientific studies have only helped to more firmly fix my belief in God."