Tuesday: The Heaven Created

“Then God said, ‘Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters,

Image © Darrel Tank from GoodSalt.com

Image © Darrel Tank from GoodSalt.com

and let it divide the waters from the waters.’ Thus God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament; and it was so. And God called the firmament Heaven. So the evening and the morning were the second day”(Gen. 1:6-8, NKJV).

God created the firmament, appointed its function, and gave it a name, heaven. The function of the firmament (heaven) was to divide the water below from the water above it. Today, we would probably use the term “sky” and recognize the division of the sky into the atmosphere, which is a part of our environment and the space beyond our atmosphere where the sun, moon, and stars are.

The atmosphere appears to be the portion of the “heaven” that was formed on the second day of Creation. The atmosphere provides a method for moving water uphill; water can evaporate and enter the atmosphere, where it can be transported to any place on the earth. Then it can be brought back to the surface, either through the mist as described in Genesis 2:6 or as rain.

God named the firmament, signifying His sovereignty over it. The act of naming implies that God is sovereign over space. Space does not limit God’s actions in any way, because He created and rules it. As with the lighting of the world on the first day, the creation of the firmament was completed before the end of the second day, another dark period of evening and a light period of morning.

Much discussion has centered on the meaning of the word firmament. The Hebrew word raqia is sometimes used to describe a sheet of metal that has been hammered into a thin sheet, hence the term “firmament.” Critics have argued that the ancient Hebrews actually believed there was a hard surface above the earth; thus, they argue, because no such thing exists, the biblical account is wrong. But this is faulty reasoning. The use of the word firmament, in that context, simply applies to the sky above, both the atmosphere and space itself. We only have to look at the immediate context to know what is being talked about. In Genesis the birds are described as flying on “the face of the firmament” (Gen. 1:20, NKJV),and in another place the firmament is where the sun and moon are seen (Gen. 1:14). Obviously the birds don’t fly in the part of the raqia where the sun and moon are.

Whatever the mysteries of the Creation narrative itself, one point comes through very clearly: nothing is left to chance. Why is that point important for us to know, especially at a time when many believe that chance played a big role in our creation?



Tuesday: The Heaven Created — 11 Comments

  1. I am glad to know that God takes care of everything and that everything is under His capable control. Along with the fact that He is perfect Love, this fact is comforting no matter what happens on this planet from day to day.

      • Danny, when God created the firmament He did so before man sinned, thus there was no fear before man sinned. God never intended man to fear, rather he intended man to never sin.

  2. our God left no details out when He Created everything on our planet, Earth.

    as per the Quarterly author's comments toward the end of today's lesson,

    regarding an outer firmament, i beg to differ.. upon viewing debates

    between Evolutionary Scientist & Bible-based Scientist, i agree with the

    Bible-based Scientist which hold the opinion that there was indeed an

    outer firmament of water in space which was made of ice do to the cold

    atmosphere.. i also agree with them that this outer " ice layer " firmament

    caused our planet to have a natural " hypebaric atmosphere. " ( double the

    amount of oxygen ) hence, we did have dinosaurs which Evolutionary Scientist

    have no explanation for. dinosaurs were merely insects that never stop

    growing! this atmosphere would explain why scribes were used to run from

    kingdom to kingdom without getting tired, easily. it also would explain

    larger plant life.

    arguably, this hyperbaric chamber of lost when God sent a large meteor toward

    earth which broke " ice firmament " layer then penetrated the earth's

    surfaces causing large amounts of water to spring-up from the lower firmament

    which caused the flood described in the book of Genesis.

    call me a coo-coo, but, i have full intentions on verifying this theory

    once we all get to heaven.

    may we all show more appreciation towards God's created earth as we seek

    Him through nature regardless of how imperfect this world has become.

  3. IF “chance” played a big role in our creation…

    was it also a “chance” that I exist??

    Thats why I'm very thankful that God created me for a reason - not by "chance".

  4. I am in awe of God's creative power! I can't wait to see this firmament for myself when God recreates our world after the millenium. Remain faithful.

  5. According to Strong, the Hebrew word raqia is derived from râqa‛
    A primitive root; to pound the earth (as a sign of passion); by analogy to expand (by hammering); by implication to overlay (with thin sheets of metal): - and it is translated in various places as beat, make broad, spread abroad (forth, over, out, into plates), stamp, stretch.
    To me this means that God stretched the heavens over the earth on day 2 of creation. Here's what NASA says of the edge of our atmosphere:
    "Atmospheric gases scatter blue wavelengths of visible light more than other wavelengths, giving the Earth’s visible edge a blue halo. At higher and higher altitudes, the atmosphere becomes so thin that it essentially ceases to exist. Gradually, the atmospheric halo fades into the blackness of space." http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=7373

  6. Thank you, Lennox, for this description of the "envelope theory" which attempts to explain the climate change that accompanied the deluge of Noah's time.

    Our readers may also be interested in explanations of the geologic processes that probably accompanied the Flood. Dr. Baumgardner's site, GlobalFlood.org is helpful in this respect, as is Walt Brown's online book, In the Beginning.

    Since no one living today was actually there to observe what happened, we need to content ourselves with theories that appear to harmonize the biblical record and the geological and historical records. And sometimes different people have different theories -- apparently equally valid.

  7. I once fully believed in the envelope theory but I found out that it has some big problems. There might have been more water in the upper atmosphere than now exists but to have the amount that the theory calls for can't be accounted for scientifically.

    When I first got into the theory people were trying to account for the sudden decrease in lifespan after Noah's flood so they postulated that a blanket of water was shielding the earth from harmful radiation before the flood. They, like you, also considered the greenhouse effect but that can be accounted for by other means including far better distribution of water since today extremes of temperature usually happens in the drier areas of the world.

  8. Hello Lennox, You provide an interesting explanation of uniform distribution of heat around the planet. However, I just wonder how come that the water blanket distributed heat so efficiently to the poles that the temperature there was equal to the temperature on the equator, while the dark side of the globe that was under intense heat during the day was for some reason cooler than at the poles which were never under intense heat.

    Another question refers to the stars: How could the stars be seen through the blanket of water that had the power to diffuse sunshine?


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