Skeptics, liberals, and others sometimes claim that man’s concept of God is something which evolved, and that the Bible is merely man’s efforts to provide himself with a religious prop to explain the otherwise unexplainable or to ease the burden of life.1 However, nothing could be further from the truth. The Bible is a book from God about God, His glory, and His plan of salvation for sinful humanity.
When we read the Bible, we find that God does not tell us everything about these things all at once. He gives us successive revelations. A name for this is ‘progress of doctrine,’ which simply means that we learn more about God and His dealings with us from each book, as we read through the Bible.
This concept can be likened to the raising of a blind in a dark room. Outside the sun is shining. As the blind goes up, it does not increase the amount of light emanating from the sun, but it does let more and more light into the room. Let us see how this works out with regard to four things that God tells us about Himself in Genesis, thus affirming the crucial nature of this foundational book.
1. God is Creator
The first thing God tells us about Himself in Genesis is that He is Creator. The very first verse of the Bible reads: ‘In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth’ (Genesis 1:1).2 The rest of chapter 1 details what God created and how He did it, namely by His Word,3 as well as over what time frame.4
As we read through the Bible, we learn that ‘the Word’ is a title given to Jesus Christ (John 1:1-14), and that it was through Jesus that everything was created (John 1:3; Colossians 1:16; Hebrews 1:2).
We also learn, following the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus, that God began a new creation—those who repent and put their faith in Jesus Christ are described as being a ‘new creature’ [new creation] (2 Corinthians 5:17).5
Finally we learn that, at some time in the future, God will create a new heaven and a new earth, as prophesied in Isaiah 65:17, and described in Revelation chapters 21-22.
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