Genesis: Day 4
Genesis 1:14 And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years:
Genesis 1:15 And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so.
Genesis 1:16 And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also.
The sun, the moon, and the stars were created on the fourth day of creation. The Bible, however, does not state that the definition of a day is 24 hours. The rotation of the earth takes us through a cycle of light and darkness that sets the length of time for a day to last. But before this fourth day there was no sun, no moon, and no stars, no sun to seemingly rise and fall as the earth rotated. The notion of 24 hours came later. The Egyptians first divided a day into 24 units somewhere around 300 BC.
It’s interesting to note that according to the Genesis account of creation God created the earth, He took it through several phases of creation called days, and then created the sun and the moon. The scripture then says He made the stars also. It sounds like such a small thing when stated that way. The scripture doesn’t put great emphasis on the creation of our massive universe. It just says He made the stars also.
There is one analysis of this section of scripture that says that the story was told from mans’ perspective, from an earthly viewpoint, and that due to a vapor that was over the earth the sun and moon were not visible until the fourth day. That sounds like a good argument until we remember that man was not around until the sixth day. He couldn’t see it from an earthly perspective or any other.
God placed the sun, moon, and stars there to divide the day from the night, and to be for signs, seasons, days, and years. He set His master celestial timepiece in motion and it’s been ticking ever since.
On the first day God said, Let there be light. On the fourth day He said, Let there be lights. These are two separate events, and they represent the bringing forth of two separate forms of light. The light of the first day was a supernatural spiritual light and radiance that emanated from God Himself. The light of the fourth day was the natural light produced by the sun that lights our natural world. The first light lights the spiritual realm, the second lights the natural realm.
The gospel of John in recounting the creation speaks of this supernatural light that God released on the first day of His creation. It’s in John 1, verses 4, 5, and 9.
John 1:4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.
John 1:5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.
John 1:9 That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.
The light that God released on the first day is the light that John calls the true light. It shined in the darkness and it is the light that continues to shine in darkness, the darkness could not and cannot overcome it, and it’s the light that enlightens the hearts of men.
Genesis 1:17 And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth,
Genesis 1:18 And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good.
Genesis 1:19 And the evening and the morning were the fourth day.