“Then God said …;” “And it was so …;” simply denote the authority of our Creator God…“And God saw that it was good;” “and behold, it was very good;” speak absolutely of the excellence of God.”
Following the commitment of “Towards Excellence” we now share a second excerpt from the study “The God of creation as author and example of excellence”, this time focused on the extraordinary six-day journey in which the wonderful creation took place.
It is important to mention that the English version of this article has been translated from the Spanish version of Towards Excellence (https://hacialaexcelencia.org/2021/11/01/creacion-una-jornada-de-seis-dias); not from the original texts and works of authors here cited. The Bible verses used are from NASB.
So, sit back and let’s briefly travel through time!
Herbert Wolf states that Genesis was written as the prologue to the rest of the Bible. In general terms, Genesis expounds on the origin of the universe, the physical world, human life, cultures and certainly the nation of Israel. All this without considering the detailed explanation of how sin entered this world and how it ruined God’s original creation.
It is interesting that throughout the creation account the frequency of at least 4 phrases to which much attention should be paid is observed: “Then God said …;” “And it was so …;” “And God saw that it was good; ““And behold, it was very good”.
The first two sentences: “Then God said …;” “And it was so …;” simply denote the authority of our Creator God. His Word is truthful and trustworthy. What God says that is fulfilled. As it is stated in Psalm 33: 8-9 (NASB):
“Let all the earth fear the Lord;
Let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of Him.
For He spoke, and it was done;
He commanded, and it stood firm.”
The second two sentences: “And God saw that it was good;” “and behold, it was very good;” speak absolutely of the excellence of God. But these last two sentences are definitely connected with the first two. God declares His Word with authority and truthfulness, consequently His decrees are executed, and they are executed with undoubted excellence.
Don Fleming, author of the “Concise Bible Commentary,” in his section “Plan of the Genesis account,” states that the Earth constitutes only a small part of God’s creation. And he adds:
“The Genesis account is concerned with showing that God made everything from nothing, that He worked from what is without form to what has form, from the simple to the complex. He describes how He led the universe through various stages until His creative activity reached its climax in Adam and Eve.” (Fleming 1994)
Thus, it is time then to travel through part of the great creative work of God. Let us start our imagination for this journey…a journey that originally lasted six days, exposed in Genesis 1: 1 – 2: 3. And for this purpose, we will quote again Fleming, who in a simple but dynamic and creative way, superbly synthesizes this work:
At first the earth was shapeless and in darkness, due to the surrounding mass of water, but as the thick clouds of steam began to lose their density, a hazy light came from the invisible Sun (1: 1-5 – Day 1).
And as they lost greater density, the vapor clouds rose from the ground, producing a clear distinction between the surface of the oceans and the roof of the heavy clouds above (1: 6-8 – Day 2).
Meanwhile the Earth (the planet) was drying up and the Earth as such appeared visible. Simpler forms of life began to appear. Various kinds of soils and climatic conditions produced various kinds of plants, which were thus created so that they continue to produce more plants according to their own species (1: 9-13 – Day 3).
The heavy cloud above, which gradually became thinner and thinner, finally broke apart. And so the sun, moon and stars that were previously hidden are now clearly visible. And its effect on the land allowed a variety of climates and an annual pattern of seasons to occur (1: 14-19 – Day 4).
As God’s creative activity progressed, animal life began to appear, with creatures in the sea and creatures in the sky (1: 20-23 – Day 5).
The Earth also experienced the appearance of animal life, until it was also filled with all kinds of creatures. And finally, the first human couple arrived, representing the pinnacle of God’s creation. Unlike other living beings, the human couple was created in the image of God. (1: 24-31 – Day 6). And about this we will talk later, in a future article, about how God, their Creator, prepared everything for their arrival and reception.
Throughout this journey of creation, it is important to note that five of the six days of creation itself, the following statement is reiterated: “And God saw that it was good.”
Henry M. Morris III, in his article “Genesis and the Character of God”, points out that it is the same word in Hebrew that is used every time and means exactly what is expected, that is: good, pleasant, charming, excellent, beneficial. In fact, this term is used more than 500 times in the Bible. There is nothing so unusual about the use of God’s Word, Morris says, except that it is repeated often and that it is God who uses this term.
And the sixth time, precisely on the sixth day, a greater emphasis is observed, “And God saw all that he had made, and behold, it was very good” (Genesis 1:31).
The Hebrew word for good is טוב [TOV] and from the Hebraic perspective it means that “TOV” is practical and functional, not just a state of pleasure. Thus, in Genesis 1:31, it is observed that God saw that His creation worked perfectly.
On the other hand, Nachmanides interprets the word מְאֹ֑ד [ME´OD] as “mainly,” that is, the world is “mainly good,” quoting Onkelos, it would be further specified as “very orderly” and “appropriately arranged.”
Throughout the six-day journey, it is undoubtedly shown that creation displays the Creator’s mark of excellence. In fact, the Creator Himself stated that His creation is flawless in every way. It is impeccable for sure in beauty, in function, in purpose, and in potential. After the creation, God saw all and saw that all created was very good.
More of the God of excellence in our next post. See you soon!
 Herbert Wolf, An Introduction to the Old Testament – Pentateuch (Chicago: Moody Press, 1991), 79-80.
 Don Fleming, Concise Bible Commentary (Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers, 1994), 13.
 Henry M. Morris III, “Genesis and the Character of God,” Institute of Creation Research, https://www.icr.org/article/genesis-character-god/
 CMJ Israel, “Hebrew Word Studies,” CMJ Israel, https://www.cmj-israel.org/yeshiva/hebrew-word-studies
 Zachary Braiterman, “Tohu and Bohu are TOV – Genesis,” Jewish Philosophy Place, https://jewishphilosophyplace.com/2014/10/19/tohu-vabohu-is-tov-genesis/
 BibleRef, “What does Genesis 1:31 mean?,” BibleRef, https://www.bibleref.com/Genesis/1/Genesis-1-31.html