Lasting Truths: More than We Need

How do these verses show that God is not only Creator but also Provider? What does He provide and for whom? Why did God declare that His creative work was very good?

1:29–31: And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat. 30And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so. 31And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

God is not only the Creator but also the bountiful Provider for His creatures. He gave to humans every herb bearing seed and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed. In other words, the first vegetables and fruit trees had seed from which others could be grown. God cared for their immediate needs and made provision for future times. The word translated meat is not flesh of animals but a word for “food” . Verse 30 shows that God made the same provision for every living creature.

Nothing is said in this passage about either humans or animals eating the flesh of animals. It is not safe to argue from silence, but the time before the fall seems to have been a time when animals and man lived in harmony. But after the flood Genesis 9:3 says, “Every moving thing that liveth shall be meat for you.” Later the law restricted the Israelites to only clean animals, a prohibition that lasted to the Christian era (Mark 7:19; Acts 10:1–23).

Genesis 1:29–30 shows the interdependence of all living things. Psalm 104 is a good expression of the interrelations of humans, domesticated and wild animals, and plants. This psalm makes clear that although humans are God’s highest creations, God has concern for all living things.

Throughout the creation account has been the theme of each stage being good. Now at the end of the sixth day, God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. “All’ that God had made was worthy of commendation. His highest acclaim is withheld until the completed creation because only after the six creation days has the lifeless earth been fully changed (1:2). Now the earth as a result of God’s ‘Spirit’ and animated word is well-ordered, complete, and abounding in life-forms under the watch care of royal humanity.”

This very good earth refutes both Gnosticism and animism. Gnostics believe that all material things are evil; therefore, they cannot accept the fact that a good God could create a physical universe. Animists believe that dark and evil forces control the earth. The revelation of a good universe refutes both.

Of course, sin came into God’s good creation, affecting not only humans but also the rest of creation. However, God is seeking to redeem this sin-scarred universe; and the good creation still holds out the ideal for redeemed people.

And the evening and the morning were the sixth day. This is another theme running throughout the chapter. It is found at the end of each day. We wonder why it doesn’t say, “and the morning and the evening were the sixth day.” For us, the day begins in the morning; however, for the Jews, day began at nightfall. Thus they understood why Genesis 1 began with the evening.

What are the lasting truths in Genesis 1:29–31?

  1. God bountifully provides for our needs.
  2. We should express our thanks to Him.
  3. Out of what He gives us, we should share with others.

Published by Intentional Faith

Devoted to a Faith that Thinks

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