Fishes and Fowls Created Part 3 of 3 (Genesis Series)
by John Lowe
22 And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth.
And God blessed them,
This is a new act by the Lord, and it brings some good to the object of the blessing. The blessing pronounced here is upon the fish and the fowl; it is that they will abundantly increase. God does not wish like men do, and then pray that we may be blessed; but, by the mere hint of His purpose, He produces what men seek to obtain by intense prayer. Therefore, when He blesses his creatures he commands them to increase and grow; that is, he infuses into them fruitfulness (or fertility) by his word. Furthermore, the force of His word is not temporary, because it is infused into their nature, takes root, and constantly bears fruit—“I know that whatever God does, It shall be forever” (Eccl 3:14; NKJV)—which is evidenced by the vast number of birds and fish existing today; the heavens are stocked with fowl, and the fish replenish the waters; and it is all for the use of man. The power of God's providence preserves all things, just as His creating power produced them. Oh, how I wish that all men were wise, and that they knew the bountiful Giver of life! Job was a man who certainly knew God, and spoke of His great works—"But now ask the beasts, and they will teach you; And the birds of the air, and they will tell you; Or speak to the earth, and it will teach you; And the fish of the sea will explain to you. Who among all these does not know That the hand of the LORD has done this, In whose hand is the life of every living thing, And the breath of all mankind?” (Job 12:7-10; NKJV).
Some may ask, “Doesn’t the fossil record show these creatures slowly evolved into existence, instead of suddenly appearing?” Most people are unaware that Darwin’s strongest opponents were not clergymen, but fossil experts. Darwin admitted the state of the fossil evidence was “the most obvious and gravest objection which can be urged against my theory,” and because of the fossil evidence, “all the most eminent paleontologists . . . and all our greatest geologists . . . have unanimously, often vehemently, maintained” that the species do not change. The fossil record is marked by two great principles: first, stasis, which means most species are unchanged in all their documented history. The way they look when they first appear in the fossil record is the way they look when last appearing in the fossil record. They have not changed. Second, sudden appearance, which means in any local area, a species does not arise gradually, but appears all at once and “fully formed.” Philip Johnson said, “If evolution means the gradual change of one kind of organism into another kind, the outstanding characteristic of the fossil record is the absence of evidence for evolution.” The Bighorn Basin in Wyoming contains a continuous record of fossil deposits for what geologists say is five million years. Because this record is so complete, paleontologists assumed a positive trail of evolution could be found. Instead, “the fossil record does not convincingly document a single transition from one species to another.” (Johnson) Evolutionist Nile Eldredge writes: “We paleontologists have said that the history of life in the fossil record supports the story of gradual evolution, all the while knowing that it does not.” (Johnson) Either evolution happened slowly, with each tiny change building on the last, over billions of years; or the changes came as quick leaps: something like a mouse coming out of a snake’s egg. The fossil record totally rejects the idea of millions of tiny changes; the quick leaps are a way of attributing miraculous power to “chance” or “nature” instead of God. While admiring the faith of those who believe in such hopeful monsters, it seems far more rational to believe in a wise, creating, designing God.
saying, Be fruitful, and multiply,
“Be fruitful” refers to the propagation of the species; and “Multiply” relates to the abundance of the offspring.
The phrase “Be fruitful and multiply,” became a regular formula of blessing (See Genesis 35:11; Genesis 48:4). The Divine benediction was not simply a wish, according to Calvin, who said; "by the bare intimation of his purpose he effects what men seek by entreaty." This Divine benediction was addressed to creatures, because it was designed to teach that the "force of the Divine word was not meant to be temporary, but, being infused into their natures, to take root and constantly bear fruit" (Calvin). And, as they say, “the proof is in the pudding,” because the fish did multiply greatly, so that there are vast numbers of them in the oceans, lakes, and rivers, in spite of many thousands of them going to human consumption daily.
Our English word "fish" is derived from the Hebrew word פוש, "fush", which signifies to multiply and increase.
and fill the waters in the seas,
“Fill the waters” is a command for them to be fully stocked. In the scriptures, the phrase “In the seas” includes the lakes, and, by association, the rivers too, which feed both the oceans and lakes. A new kind of creation is in view here. While in the case of some plants many individuals of the same species were simultaneously created, in order to produce a worldwide covering of greenness for the land and an abundant supply of food for the animals, about to be created; but when God created the animals He made a single pair only of the larger kinds of each type, and by the power of His will that accompanied this potent blessing of the Creator, the waters and the air was propagated by multitudes of fish and birds, respectively, and in a relatively short period of time.
and let fowl multiply in the earth.
The care, wisdom, and skill with which God has fashioned the different species of birds are truly astonishing, whether they are intended to live chiefly on land or in water. The structure of a single feather provides a world of wonders; and since God intended for the fowls to fly in the firmament of heaven—“… let birds fly above the earth across the face of the firmament of the heavens” (Gen 1:20; NKJV)—he has adapted the form of their bodies, the structure and disposition of their plumage, and the design of their bones for that very purpose. The head and neck in flying are drawn principally within the breast-bone, so that the whole under part exhibits the appearance of a ship‘s hull. The wings are made use of as sails, or rather oars, and the tail as a helm or rudder. The bones are hollow to reduce their weight. By means of these innovations the creature is able to travel through the air with considerable speed, either straightforward, in a circular pattern, or in any kind of angle, upwards or downwards. God has also shown his skill and his power by providing birds, both large and small—in the huge ostrich, and in the beautiful humming-bird, which in plumage excels the splendor of the peacock, and in size is almost on a level with the bee.
God said, “let fowl multiply in the earth”; and they did, and continue to do so today.
23 And the evening and the morning were the fifth day
This is the fifth day of God’s labors. The sun has been in the firmament for two days now, since it was put there the day before. The earth has rotated 360˚ on its axis twice; each rotation requiring twenty–four hours.