Discussion All Areas Of Systematic Theology
Here is what I would interpret from the Genesis creation accounts:
Gen 1:1 A beginning of Elohim (the plural form to indicate that the angels/gods are involved in the creation along with Yahweh) created the sky (heavens) and the land (earth/land, within Abraham’s inheritance, Gen. 15:18; 2 Peter 3:4-6; Rev.22:16, not the universe, the planet earth, and the mankind/pre-Adamites/non-Adamites),
2 the land was waste and without form; and it was dark on the face of the deep, and the spirit of God was moving on the face of the waters.
3 And Elohim commanded, “Let there be dawn,” and there was the dawn.
4 And Elohim, observed the dawn, saw it was beautiful. And Elohim made a distinction between dawn and dusk.
5 Then Elohim made a proclamation, declaring the dawn to begin the day and dusk to begin the night, so there was sunset and sunrise, a single day.
6 And Elohim commanded, “Let there be a fog to lift up from upon the waters to form the clouds over the land.
7 And Elohim filled the sky over the land with the clouds.
8 And Elohim gave the name the “skies”, where the clouds floated overhead. And there was sunset and there was sunrise, another (second) day.
9 And Elohim commanded, “Let the waters under the sky come together in one place, and let the dry area be seen.” And it was so.
10 And Elohim named the dry area the “land”, and the waters gathered in their place were named the “seas”.
11 And Elohim commanded, “Let grass come up on the earth, and plants producing seed, and fruit-trees giving fruit, in which is their seed, after their sort." And it was so.
12 And grass came up on the land, and every plant producing seed of its sort, and every tree producing fruit, in which is its seed, of its sort, and Elohim saw that it was beautiful.
13 And there was sunset and there was sunrise, another (third) day.
14 And Elohim commanded, “Let there be lights (sun and moon) in the heavenly bodies (sky), for a division between the day and the night, and let them be for signs, and for marking the changes of the year, and for days and for years. (these were the calendar for the great feasts days when His people were to worship Him in the land).
15 And let them be for lights in the heavenly bodies to give light on the land”, and it was so.
16 And Elohim made the two great lights: the greater light (sun) to be the ruler of the day, and the smaller light (moon) to be the ruler of the night: and he made the stars.
17 And Elohim put them in the heavenly bodies, to give light on the land;
18 To have rule over the day and the night, and for a division between the light and the dark: and Elohim saw that it was beautiful.
19 And there was sunset and there was sunrise, another (fourth) day.
20 And Elohim commanded, “Let the waters be full of living things, and let birds be in flight over the land under the heavenly bodies.”
21 And Elohim made great sea-beasts, and every kind of living and moving thing with which the waters were full, and every kind of winged bird: and Elohim saw that it was beautiful.
22 And Elohim gave them his blessing, saying, “Be fertile and have increase, making all the waters of the seas full, and let the birds be increased in the land.”
23 And there was sunset and there was sunrise, another (fifth) day.
24 And Elohim commanded, “Let the land give birth to all kinds of living things, cattle and all things moving on the land, and beasts of the land after their kind”. And it was so.
25 And Elohim made the beasts of the land after its kind, and the cattle after their kind, and everything moving on the face of the land after its kind. And Elohim saw that it was beautiful.
26 And Elohim commanded, “Let US (as we seen in verse one, angels were involved) make man (Adamite) in our image, like US (remember God is a spirit and no man can see Yahweh. The angels’ appearance is like the humans, I’ll explain a little bit later): and let him have rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the air and over the cattle and over all the land (not planet earth) and over every living thing which goes flat on the land.”
27 And Elohim made man (Adamite) in his image, in the image of Elohim he made him: male (Adam) and female (Eve) he made them.
28 And Elohim gave them his blessing and said to them, “Be fertile and have increase, and make the land full and be masters of it; be rulers over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the air and over every living thing moving on the land.”
29 And Elohim commanded, “See, I have given you every plant producing seed, on the face of all the land, and every tree which has fruit producing seed, they will be for your food.
30 And to every beast of the land and to every bird of the air and every living thing moving on the face of the land I have given every green plant for food”. And it was so.
31 And Elohim saw everything which he had made and it was very beautiful. And there was sunset and there was sunrise, another (sixth) day.
Gen. 2:1 And the sky and the land and all things in them were complete.
2 And on the seventh day Elohim came to the end of all his work; and on the seventh day he took his rest from all the work which he had done.
3 And Elohim gave his blessing to the seventh day and made it holy (Sabbath): because on that day he took his rest from all the work which he had made and done.
4 These are the accounts of the sky and the land when they were made.
Here is where I see "Elohim" and "Yahweh" and "men" and "angels" all used to speak of the three who came to Abraham. The following verses all see to refer to the same incident. In Gen 18:1-2, it says that "the Lord (Yahweh) appeared to Abraham in the plains of Mare." Gen 18:13 also says that "the Lord (Yahweh)" asked "Why did Sarah laugh." The visitors are called "men" in 18:20-22. Then, in 19:1, they are called "angels" when they came to Sodom. And, then, in 19:12-13 the "angels" say that "Yahweh" sent them to destroy Sodom. Finally, in 19:29, it says that "elohim destroyed the cities of the plain."
Also, in Amos 4:11, it is "Yahweh" who says that "I have overthrown some of you (Israelites) just as elohim (angels) overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah."
What do you think?
The Genesis creation is about the beginning of the Promised Land and God's people, not about the universe, the earth, and the whole mankind. Here's what someone (Rivers Of Eden) wrote from the Planet Preterist forum:
"The language in Genesis 1-2 simply describes the clearing of a desolate flood plain (i.e. the Promised Land) so that it could become inhabitable for Adam and his Israelite descendants to whom the Land would be given by God through Abraham (Genesis 17:1-6)
At "the beginning" (Genesis 1:1-2), the Land was flooded the same way that it became during the time of Noah, and then the waters receeded and everything got back to normal. The days of creation merely describe the clearing of the rain, clouds, and flood waters so that the Land became a place where vegetation, animals, and Adam could live and prosper:
Day One: The land and skies were dark because it was night and nothing was visible because deep flood water covered all the Land and dark rain clouds covered the skies. When "morning" came, the "light" (of the sun) became visible through the clouds.
Day Two: The light made the horizon visible so that one could see the difference between the flood waters and the rain clouds. This is how the "waters" were separated. Flood water covered the Land, and rain water fell from the skies.
Day Three: The flood waters begin to receed so that the Land became visible and vegetation began to grow out of the ground.
Day Four: The rain clouds receeded so that the sun, moon, and stars (i.e. the source of the light from Day One) became visible to provide light even during the night.
Day Five: The animals and birds returned to the Land and skies because the storm was over and there was now vegetation and insects for food.
Day Six: The first ancestor of the Israelites (i.e. Adam) was made out of the Land where he could now live and prosper with his family.
This is a simple explanation of the meaning of the creation story that does not require any "science" or manipulation of the plain sense of any of the Hebrew language. It also accounts for the limited geocentric scope of the language and knowledge of the ancient Hebrews, as well as the limitations of the Noahic flood language.
From a theological standpoint, it also explains the inseparable connection between the Promised Land and the Law of Moses that is developed throughout the rest of the Pentateuch, as well as the centrality of the Land of Israel and the city of Jerusalem at the consummation of all prophecy.
I think the "generations" in Genesis 2:4 would have to correspond to "the generations of Adam" (Genesis 5:1) because the account shows that Adam and Eve were the only people in "Eden" (Genesis 2:8) at the time. "Generations" is definitely a word that meant "people" and "heavens and earth" simply meant that local place where they were living which was specifically identified by "Eden" and the rivers (Genesis 2:8-14).