Food for Man and Beast Part 2 of 2 (series: Lessons on Genesis)
by John Lowe
31 And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.
The work of creation has been completed, and God steps back and appraises his work: He “saw every thing that he had made.” He does the same thing today; His eye is always on the work of His hands, for He never sleeps, nor does He slumber. He that made all sees all; he that made us sees us (see Ps. 139:1–16). Omniscience cannot be separated from omnipotence. “Known unto God are all his works from the beginning of the world” (Acts 15:18; KJV). But this was the Eternal Mind’s solemn reflection upon the accomplishments of His own wisdom and power. With these words, God has set us an example of reviewing our works. He has given us the power of reflection, and He expects us to use that power to see our way—“…Consider your conduct…recall what you have done…” (Jer. 2:23; NABWRNT), and to think of it—“I thought on my ways, and turned my feet unto thy testimonies.” When we have finished a day’s work, and settled into bed for the night, we should confer with our own hearts about what we have been doing that day; and likewise when we have finished a week’s work, and are getting ready for the Sabbath-rest, we should prepare to meet our God; and when we are finishing our life’s work, and are entering upon our rest in the grave, that is a time to bring to remembrance our life’s work and contemplate the Lord’s care, so that we may repent of our unconfessed sins, and take leave of this life.
God took satisfaction in his work because He saw “it was very good;” but when we take time to review our works we find, to our shame, that much of it has been very bad. He did not pronounce it good until He had seen it and appraised it, to teach us not to jump to conclusions, but to listen and use our reason and common sense, before we answer or make a decision. The work of creation was a very good work. All that God made was well-made, and there was no flaw or defect in it.
1. It was good. Good, because the Creator said it was; it was exactly like He envisioned it in His all-knowing mind. Good, because it accomplished the purpose for which it was designed. Good, because it is useful to man, whom God had appointed lord of the visible creation. Good, because it is all for God’s glory; there is something in nature which demonstrates God’s being and perfection.
2. It was very good. God said that each day’s work (except the second) was good, but now He says “it is very good.” For the reason:
a. Now man was made, who was the chief creation of God, who was designed to be the visible image of the Creator’s glory and the mouth that speaks His praises.
b. Now all was made; every part was good, but all together it was very good. The glory and goodness, the beauty and harmony, of God’s creative works, will be even better when they are perfected. Therefore judge nothing before the time.
The time when this work was concluded was “The evening and the morning were the sixth day;” so that in six days God made the world. We are not to think that God could not have made the world in an instant. He said “Let there be light, and there was light,” and He could have said, "Let there be a world,’’ and there would have been a world, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, as at the resurrection—“It will happen in a moment, in the blink of an eye, when the last trumpet is blown…” (1 Cor 15:52; NLT). But He did it in six days, so that he might show himself to be a free-agent, doing his own work both in his own way and in his own time,—in order that his wisdom, power, and goodness, might be known to us, and be meditated upon by us—and that he might set us an example of working six days and resting the seventh; it is, therefore, made the reason of the fourth commandment. I think that when we think about creation or nature, we are usually unimpressed, and our praises little and flat; let us, therefore, stir up ourselves, to worship him that made the heaven, earth, and sea, and the fountains of waters, according to the sense of the everlasting gospel, which is preached to every nation—“And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters” (Rev 14.16, 17; KJV). During our age, the gospel has been committed to men, and they alone are the messengers of it. Angels would like to give the message of the gospel, but they have not been permitted to do so.
All his works, in all places of his dominion, do bless him; and, therefore, bless thou the Lord, O my soul! “An attitude of gratitude … is not dependent upon people or circumstances but rather upon a confident faith in the Lord.”—Dorothy Kelley Patterson
This brings us to the end of chapter one and there are some things we should note, in summary. One of these things is that the Bible makes no attempt to prove that there is a God. Why not? Because He says, “The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God …” (Ps. 14:1).
The Bible is a Book written to reveal the spiritual, the religious, the redemptive truth, and that comes to us only by faith. So we have here the fact that God is the One who created.
In this first chapter, we see the unity and power and personality of God. This is exactly what Paul wrote in Romans 1:20: “For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen.” How are they clearly seen? “Being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse.” I say to you very candidly that God has proven His existence by the evidence of nature—His creation; therefore; no one will be able to say on the Day of Judgment, I did not know there was a God.
Some other truths in this chapter are:
1. It denies polytheism: One God creates.
2. It denies the eternity of matter. The first words are: “In the beginning”—and it all had a beginning, my friend. This is true in spite of the fact that there was a time when science taught the eternity of matter.
3. This chapter denies pantheism. God is before all things and He is apart from them.
4. It denies fatalism—God acts in the freedom of His will.
5. Finally, let me enumerate the striking features in chapter 1: