1 In the beginning <bara Elohim (powers He)> created the heaven and the earth.

Here Power is plurally presented in connection with a singular verb, bara Elohim

"powers He created."

This looks and sounds very uncouth to the Anglo-Saxon mind; and as the grammar is bad, in order to save the grammatical reputation of Moses, and to get over what they can not explain, the grammarians have invented the plural of majesty or excellence, and tell us that the plural word Elohim must be regarded as singular.

Their grammar teaches us that there was only One Person as well as One Power concerned in developing what exists on earth, out of nothing; but that, as this one person is very great, He is to be spoken of as if He were more than one; as if to resolve Him into two or three would add to His excellency.

This notion is, however, sheer foolishness; for in those passages where the Creator asserts His supremacy, majesty or excellency, he speaks of Himself emphatically as anoke, anoke, Yahweh, that is,

"I, I Yahweh"; not "We, We, Jehovah."

The grammarians, having invented their rule, the theologians of the Old Man's school, rush in to show why it must be so. They say, that in the Godhead there are Three Persons, God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost: three Gods in One Godhead; and that therefore, because of this, the Godhead which created all things is styled Gods in the Hebrew, that is Elohim.

But we have shown that the Godhead, or Fountain of Power, is only one: and speaks of Himself as One only; we have seen also that there existed many Sons of Power before the earth was fashioned. These are Elohim, of whom it is testified in Psalm 103:20,

"Bless Yahweh ye His angels, Mighty Ones of Power, doers of His word, hearkening to the voice of His command; bless ye Yahweh, all His hosts, His ministers who do His pleasure."

Phanerosis - One Deity in multiplicity

In the beginning of God's preparing the heavens and the earth-

the earth hath existed waste and void, and darkness on the face of the deep, and the Spirit of God fluttering on the face of the waters,

Youngs literal translation

The Bible does not say the earth was created‭ ‬6,000‭ ‬years ago,‭ ‬but in the beginning,‭ ‬and we don't know when that was

The Christadelphian, Nov 1896.

The six days' work was undoubtedly 6,000 years ago, and the six days' work included the making of the earth in the sense in which a country is made when established and developed, but it did not include the making of it in the sense of bringing it into existence for the first time. The evidence proves this. It shows the earth existent

"without form and void, and darkness on the face of the deep"

at the beginning of the work (Gen. 1:2). It is impossible to lay too much stress upon the casual glimpse which these words afford us of the pre-Adamite condition of the earth. It is but a sentence, and yet it is a whole revelation on the point. It is like a rent in the back-wall of the human era, through which we peer backwards into a long vista of darkness, whose length cannot be measured; and if science says there were millions of years in it, we say, as believers in the Bible, "Very well, the Bible allows for it in its opening sentence."

The six days' work relates only to the process by which, from the earth point of view (for the story is written for the inhabitants of the earth), the earth was brought from the condition in which that work found it. For reasons not disclosed, the earth had been submerged in water, and enveloped in darkness, which is the state in which it is first introduced to view. It had evidently been a long time in that state -- with which the geological indications agree. How long is not revealed, either by the Bible or science. The moment arrived when, to Divine Wisdom, it seemed meet and proper to break into this state of things, and bring the earth into a habitable state.

Law of Moses Ch 5

In the beginning

...the present race of man appeared upon the earth about 6,000 years ago in the creation of the first human pair Adam and Eve.

The special sadness would arise from this reflection, that if the appearance of man on the earth was otherwise than the Bible relates, we have a noble race with the unhappy future before them of finding themselves at last too numerous for the globe they inhabit, and without means of easing the press by emigration elsewhere.

This is a mathematical certainty if there be no reigning and superintending power at work, since we have here a race with indefinite capacity of multiplication on an earth of fixed limits of food-production and habitable space.

These two blind facts must come into collision some day if the wisdom that has produced man entertains no plan for the regulation of his destiny in the ages to come.

The philosophy of our day would deny the existence of this regulating intelligence in creation, and would compel us, either to shut our eyes to the manifest issue of things, or to give ourselves up to the grievousness of inevitable disaster.

...But we are under no necessity of listening to such unhappy doctrines.

Seasons 2.75

2 And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of Elohim moved upon the face of the waters.

Swirling mists prevented the light of the sun reaching the earth.*

Let the reader peruse the history of the creation as a revelation to himself as an inhabitant of the earth. It informs him of the order in which the things narrated would have developed themselves to his view, had he been placed on some projecting rock, the spectator of the events detailed. He must remember this.

The Mosaic account is not a revelation to the inhabitants of other orbs remote from the earth of the formation of the boundless universe; but to man, as a constituent of the terrestrial system. This will explain why light is said to have been created four days before the sun, moon, and stars. To an observer on the earth, this was the order of their appearance; and in relation to him a primary creation, though absolutely pre-existent for millions of ages before the Adamic Era.

The duration of the earth's revolutions round the sun previous to the work of the first day is not revealed; but the evidences produced by the strata of our globe show that the period was long continued. There are indeed hints, casually dropped in the Scriptures, which would seem to indicate, that our planet was inhabited by a race of beings anterior to the formation of man.

The apostle Peter, speaking of the "false teachers" that would arise among Christians "by reason of whom the way of truth would be evil spoken of," illustrates the certainty of their "damnation" by citing three cases in point; namely, that of certain angels; that of the antediluvian world; and that of Sodom and Gomorrha. 

Now the earth, we know, was the place of judgment to the contemporaries of Noah and Lot, and seeing that these three are warnings to inhabitants of earth, it is probable, that they are all related to things pertaining to our globe in the order of their enumeration -- first, judgment upon its pre-Adameral inhabitants; secondly, upon the antediluvian world, which succeeded them; and thirdly, upon Sodom after the flood.

Peter says, that "the Angels," or pre-Adameral inhabitants of the Earth, "sinned;" and Jude, in speaking of the same subject, reveals to us the nature of their transgression. He says, verse 6, "the angels maintained not their original state, but forsook their own habitation." From which it would appear, that they had the ability to leave their dwelling if they pleased; secondly, that they were sometimes employed as messengers to other parts of the universe; this their name (aggeloV, aggelos, one sent) implies: thirdly, that they were forbidden to leave their habitation without special command to do so; and fourthly, that they violated this injunction and left it.

Having transgressed the divine law, God would not forgive them; "but casting them down," or driving them back, 

"He committed them to everlasting chains of intense darkness to be reserved for judgment" 

(2 Peter 2:4). 

Hence, it is clear, when they were driven back to their habitation, some further catastrophy befel them by which their committal to darkness was effected. This probably consisted in the total wreck of their abode, and their entire submergence, with all the mammoths of their estate, under the waters of an overwhelming flood, reduced to this extremity, the earth became

 "without form and empty; and darkness overspread the deep waters" (Genesis 1:1).

Its mountains, hills, valleys, plains, seas, rivers, and fountains of waters, which gave diversity of "form" to the surface of our globe, all disappeared; and it became "void," or empty, no living creatures, angels, quadrupeds, birds, or fishes, being found any more upon it.

Fragments, however, of the wreck of this pre-Adameral world have been brought to light by geological research, to the records of which we refer the reader, for a detailed account of its discoveries, with this remark, that its organic remains, coal fields, and strata, belong to the ages before the formation of man, rather than to the era of the creation, or the Noachic flood. This view of the matter will remove a host of difficulties, which have hitherto disturbed the harmony between the conclusions of geologists and the Mosaic account of the physical constitution of our globe...

In the period between the wreck of the globe as the habitation of the rebel angels and the epoch of the first day, the earth was as described in Genesis 1:2, 

"without form and void, and darkness upon the face of the deep," 

-- a globe of mineral structure, submerged in water, and mantled in impenetrable night. Out of these crude materials, a new habitation was constructed, and adapted to the abode of new races of living creatures.

Elpis Israel 1.2.

...the earth was put in order and the Adamic race appeared on the scene 6,000 years ago. The pre-existence of the earth and of races upon it, is not only compatible with the Mosaic narrative, but is recognised in the opening chapter.

Before the six days' work began, it shows us, chapter 1 verse 2, "darkness on the face of the deep;" the earth without order, and void. The very first incident described is the movement of the spirit of God "on the face of the waters" (same verse), from which it follows the earth and the waters existed before the re-organising work of 6,000 years ago began.

How long it had existed in that state there is nothing to show; but there is room for any length of time the evidences of geology may claim. Consequently, there is none of the practical and insuperable difficulty which most people suppose to be in the way of receiving the Mosaic account of creation. The earth had a history before the six days' work, as further evident from the words addressed to Adam:

"Be fruitful and multiply, and replenish the earth."

The nature of that history is not disclosed to us in the Scriptures, and geology cannot tell us. Both the Bible and geology show it was a history marked by convulsion and ending in catastrophe. The Bible shows us the recovery from that state by the six days' work ending in the appearance of Adam on the scene.

The Bible and geology are sufficiently in agreement to make the acceptance of both possible, but even if there were hopeless divergence between them, we must remember that geology is too incomplete and changeable a science (changeable, that is, in the inferences that men draw from the facts observed; changeable also in the aspect in which facts present themselves to various students and at different times), to come into competition with the attested authority of the Scriptures of Moses, the prophets and the apostles.

The Visible Hand of God Ch 2


I find the word spirit used in the Bible for what science styles electricity, galvanism, magnetism, &c.; for mind, natural courage, natural force, life, instinct, ambition, apparition, demon, breath, disposition, a disease, words of truth, God, teaching unction, angels, the gospel, conscience, &c. any one may see that spirit is not to be rendered by one meaning in all the texts where it occurs. Its signification must be determined by the subject in text and context. This is the rule I work by; and by its aid I find no difficulty in making sense of all the passages where it is found.

Herald of the Kingdom and Age to Come, Dec 1852

Ruach Elohim

I remark that by a metonomy, or figure of speech in which the container is put for the thing contained, and vice versa, nephesh "breathing frame," is put for neshemet ruach chayim, which, when in motion, the frame respires. Hence nephesh signifies "life," also "breath" and "soul" -- Life, or those mutually affective, positive and negative principles in all living creatures, whose closed circuits cause motion of and in their frames.

These principles, or qualities, perhaps, of the same thing, are styled by Moses Ruach Elohim (Gen. 1:2), or Spirit of Him "who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto, whom no man hath seen, nor can see" (1 Tim. 6:16), and which, when the word was spoken by "the Holy Gods" (Dan. 4:8), first caused a motion upon the waters, and afterwards disengaged the light, evolved the expanse, aggregated the waters, produced vegetation, manifested the celestial universe, vitalized the breathing frames of the dry land, expanse, and seas; and formed man in their image and likeness.

This ruach, or spirit, is neither the Uncreated One who dwells in light, the Lord God, nor the Elohim, his co-workers, who co-operated in the elaboration of the natural world. It was the instrumental principle by which they executed the commission of the glorious INCREATE to erect this earthly house, and furnish it with living souls of every species.

It is this ruach, or instrumentally formative power, together with the neshemeh or breath, which keeps them all from perishing, or returning to the dust. Thus, "if God set His heart against man, He will withdraw to Himself ruachu veneshemetu, i.e., his spirit and his breath; all flesh shall perish together, and man shall turn again to dust" (Job 34:14-15).

In another place, "by the neshemet el, or breath of God, frost is given" (Job 37:10). Speaking of reptiles and beasts, David saith, "thou withdrawest ruachem, i.e., their spirit -- they die; and to their dust they return. Thou sendest forth ruhech, ie., Thy spirit -- they are created" (Psalm 104:29). And again, "whither shall I fly, meruhech, from Thy spirit" (Psalm 139:7).

From these testimonies it is manifest, that the ruach or spirit is all pervading. It is in heaven, in sheol, or the dust of the deepest hollow, in the uttermost depths of the sea, in the darkness, in the light, and in all things animate, and without life. It is an universal principle in the broadest, or rather, in an illimitable sense.

It is the substratum of all motion, whether manifested in the diurnal and ellipsoidal revolutions of the planets, in the flux and reflux of the sea, in the storms and tempests of the expanse, or in the organism of reptiles, cattle, beasts, fish, fowls, vegetables, or men. The atmospheric expanse is charged with it; but it is not the air: plants and animals of all species breathe it; but it is not their breath: yet without it, though filled with air, they would die.

3 And Elohim said, Let there be light: and there was light.

Light is an amazing phenomen. We can't touch it, or feel it, like rain or snow, yet it is all around us, by which we see with our eyes, as all other creatures with eyes, and plankton in oceans which thrive in the photic zone, and plants which use light energy to photosynthesise, and we are acutely conscious when it is absent. Darkness is the absence of light (Jhn.3. 19-21: Jhn 1. 4-5).

Men love darkness rather than light, (the light of Yahweh's Word) because their deeds are evil.

"To the law, and the testimony, if they speak not according to this Word, there is no light in them'' Isa 8:20.

It is the scientific fashion to believe that things have "evolved" themselves. But this is a mere speculation. That is, it is a guess suggested by certain facts on the surface of things that look in that direction, but which are capable of another explanation. It is a guess inconsistent with other facts: a guess hazarded by one or two clever men, and taken up and re-echoed by thousands of mediocrities: a guess, however, rejected by men of equal scientific eminence to the originators of it, and refused by a large section of the scientific community.

As a guess it is not like most scientific conclusions-demonstrated truth; it is a mere theory in the air that has rapidly become popular because of its tendency to liberate from the obligations associated with the Scriptures. It is a guess effectually demolished when the resurrection of Christ is established, for with the resurrection of Christ comes the proof of his divinity and the consequent establishment of Moses and the prophets endorsed by him.

But even evolution itself cannot dispense with such a beginning of things as is exhibited in the Mosaic narrative. For what is evolution? It is the gradual development of things from latent power. The power for a thing to be (or its "potentiality," as scientific writers say) must exist before the thing itself can come. For example, the potentiality of any plant exists in its seed; the potentiality of ice exists in water; the potentiality of the various orders of living things exists in their respective seeds.

Without this antecedent power to exist, they would not come. Now, carry the process of evolution backwards far enough, we are bound to come to a time when there was no earth, no sun, no stars; when the universe was an undeveloped potentiality. (The hypothesis of evolution involves this.)

Very well, imagine ourselves in such a time, what should we look at, so to speak? In a sense, of course, there would be nothing to see, for nothing concrete existed to be seen; but the force or power now incorporate in the splendid frame of the universe must have existed. There must have been an all-space-filling ocean of invisible power or energy out of which heaven and earth came by "evolution." Now, in this ocean there must have existed the potentiality of heaven and earth; for if the power of them to come did not exist there, how came they?

Yes, says the evolutionist, their potentiality did exist; that is what we contend for. Very well, but look at this, how came the potentiality to stir itself? Select any time for the start you like (any number of millions of years), it was at rest before then? Yes. Now for how long a time was it at rest? It matters not if you say a year (which of course would be absurd) or a million years (which would only be a little less absurd), or measureless time-time without beginning (which must have been the fact).

Here is the problem you have to face: how came the potentiality to stir when it did stir, and why was it quiescent in the antecedent eternity? Must not something have come upon the scene at the moment of the stirring which was not before at work? Must not an impulse have begun to move which was not moving before? Must not the previously sleeping "force" have begun to vibrate with a formative stimulus not previously experienced?

How came the antecedent "force," however slowly, to incorporate itself in the beautiful forms of the universe, which had no previous existence? Something like the Mosaic start took place even on your hypothesis; a fiat, a stimulus, a volition not before active, gave things a start in the direction of their present form, even if they have been evolved in the Darwinian sense.

The slowness does not make the process any easier to understand. If the Mosaic start in a quick way is inconceivable, so is the Darwinian; they are both equally out of the range of the human intellect. There are two great differences between them in favour of the Mosaic.

First, the Darwinian hypothesis is a guess, while the Mosaic narrative is a matter of testimony commended to our faith by many powerful evidences; secondly, the Mosaic view gives us a cause adequate to the effect produced, namely, an all-wise, all-powerful Intelligence, possessing in himself the focalised power of the universe, and capable of imparting that initiative to creative power that is required for the explanation of what we see, while the Darwinian theory gives us eternal force without will or wisdom to do a thing which required both in their supremest form.

God has made heaven and earth by His power. This is the simple proposition to which the profoundest of philosophy leads.

The Visible Hand of God Ch 2

4 And Elohim saw the light, that it was good: and Elohim divided the light from the darkness.

On Day 1 Elohim cleared the mists, and on Day 4 the full light of the sun could be seen, as was the Light of Christ on the Fourth Millenial Day (Jhn.l), bathing everything in golden glory*

*Bro Richard Lister

The fourth day.

The Elohim are now more than half through with the creation work. We do not know how many of the Elohim (pronounced Elo-heem) were engaged in the work, possibly all of them, for we read that when the foundations of the earth were laid,

"the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy" (Job 38:7).

At any rate, they were all immensely interested in the work, that is clear. The recurring phrase, "the evening and the morning," suggests at least that darkness and night preceded the existence of light and day. This agrees with its historic counterpart, for as we read in the language of inspiration,

"the night is far spent, and the day is at hand".

There is a designed correspondence between the physical and moral aspects of things. This was doubtless one of the things that had to be provided for in the framework of heaven and earth. There is about the same relation between heaven and earth as there is between a man's body and his head.

The head gives direction and impulse to all the powers of the body. Where Yahweh's word has penetrated the understanding, the head becomes the reflector of light, borrowed from the sun of righteousness.

Nothing is more certain than that the author of nature is also the author of revelation.

The Christadelphian, Aug 1888

5 And Elohim called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.

6 And Elohim said, Let there be a firmament [expanse] in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.

The atmosphere, which extends some forty-five miles in altitude, and encircles the globe, is styled the expanse, by Moses; and the breath of God, in Job. It is a compound body, consisting when pure of nitrogen and oxygen, in the proportion of 79 of the former to 21 of the latter, in 100 parts.

These are considered as simple bodies, because they have not yet been decomposed; though it is probable they have a base, which may be ruach. This may exist free or combined with the elementary consituents of the neshemeh. Uncombined, it is that wonderful fluid, whose explosions are heard in the thunder, whose fiery bolts overthrow the loftiest towers, and rive the sturdy monarch of the woods; and in less intensity gives polarity to light, the needle, and the brain.

These three together, the oxygen, nitrogen, and electricity, constitute "the breath" and "spirit" of the lives of all God's living souls.

Elpis Israel 2.3.

The Hebrew word rendered firmament, signifies something out-spread or extended, hence, an expanse best expresses the idea of the original. The same word, in a slightly shorter form, is rendered "spread," as in the saying, "He that spread forth the earth" (Isa. 42:5), and "stretched," as in the words,

"to him that stretched out the earth above the waters" (Ps. 136:6); and "spread out,"

as in the question

"hast thou with him spread out the sky, which is strong, and as a molten looking glass?" (Job 37:18).

And again we read that

"He stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain, and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in"(Isa. 42:22; Ps. 104:2; Jer. 10:12).

"The original term rendered firmament," says Cassell's Bible Dictionary, "is derived from a word meaning 'to beat out,' as gold is beat out into thin plates, to cover or overlay anything.

The Christadelphian, Apr 1888

In the midst of the waters

This transparent atmospheric expanse was interposed between the actual waters of the earth; and the watery vapours above constituting the clouds, which float in the azure vault of heaven, curtaining off the more terrestrial part of the expanse, from the more immeasurable æther beyond.

The Christadelphian, Apr 1888

7 And Elohim made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so.

The firmament is the expanse - the atmospheric shell that envelops the earth and makes life thereon possible.

About this, ancient man knew very little. It remained for the last days for man to discover the importance and significance of this basic divine revelation.

God divided the waters so that there were clouds above and seas beneath, and thus was established, with the aid of the sun, the water cycle that turns the earth from a desert to a paradise.

Life for the earth depends on the water cycle: up from the seas into the atmosphere by the power of the sun, across the heaven in clouds moved and guided by the winds, down again to the earth in rain or snow, to cause the earth to bear fruit, back to the seas in rivers. So the endless, life-giving cycle flows.

Bro Growcott - Consider the Heavens

This is the language of execution. It is the sequel to the word "let there be" and suggests that it is a case of the chief of the Elohim addressing his angel-associates (as in verse 26), or Yahweh himself addressing the Spirit-"sons of God" (Job 38:7) as the executors of his pleasure (Ps. 103:20); for is it not expressly said that "Yahweh made heaven and earth" (Ex. 20:11; Ps. 95:3-5); and is it not also of Yahweh that it is said that

"he spake and it was done; he commanded and it stood fast."

And it was so. This is expressive of the completed thing. The work to be done had been done according to Yahweh's word.

The Christadelphian, Apr 1888

8 And Elohim called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day.

The word heaven is from an Anglo-Saxon root which signifies "to heave." It is therefore applicable only to what is high and lifted up, or arched and elevated. So with the Hebrew word shamayin (always plural), which signifies "heaved up things."

This heaven-word is the word rendered air in all cases in the Old Testament where the birds or "fowls of the air" are referred to. This is so also with the Greek word (ouranos), which is rendered air in the same sort of cases in the New Testament.

God called the nagia (or expanse) shamayin; this therefore was God's own name, the institution which it represents.

In the political use of the term this heaven or aerial represents the "heaved up things" in a nation, to wit, the rulers thereof who are its sun, moon, and stars (Isa. 13:10; 34:4), or its political birds of prey (Hab. 1:8; Matt. 24:28). It is also employed in the same sense when the Israelitish nation under the old covenant is spoken of as a heavens and earth; as when it is said

"Hear O heavens and give ear O earth" (Isa. 1:2);

The Christadelphian, Apr 1888

The evening and the morning.

The Hebrews began their day in the evening, as it is said

"from even unto even shall ye celebrate your sabbath" (Lev. 23:32);

so also (says Browndid) "the ancient Athenians, Austrians, Bohemians, Marcomans, Silesians modern Italians and Chinese."

And the modern European nations, who for the most part begin their day at midnight, must have derived their idea, in so far as it approximates to the original institution from either the Hebrew practice or the Hebrew account of the matter, which we have in the Scriptures.

Where they have done otherwise, as in the case of the Chaldeans, Persians, Syrians, and modern Greeks, who commence their day at sunrise, and in the case of the ancient Umbri and Arabians, who began their day at noon, we may consider that a departure from the first order of things has taken place.

The Hebrew evening-morning is from sunset to sunset. To this the political and prophetic history of Israel may be said to correspond; for their settlement in the land was preceded by what may be called an evening experience in the wilderness, introductory to the day upon which she entered under Joshua the antitypical sun of righteousness.

As it was then, so it will be again (Mic. 7:15); the great glory that will at last settle upon all Israelitish affairs will be preceded by operations, about the meaning of which Israel will be in the dark for a time, and which may well be compared to the twilight which is so soon to be followed by a political day, in which Israel's sun will never more go down, nor her moon ever again withdraw itself" (Isa. 60:19, 20).

The Christadelphian, Apr 1888

Second day.

These specifications of time are no doubt placed here, for one reason, with reference to the use that would afterwards be made of them, in connection with the system of work and worship under which Israel was placed, of which the creation-week was to be the model (Ex. 20:8-11), and this its first application pending its more ample analogy to the world's constitution as a whole, as the workshop of God's final purpose, to be followed by a sabbath-keeping creation, that will rest in His love, and hallow His name "world without end" (Heb. 4:8-11).

The Christadelphian, Apr 1888

9 And Elohim said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so.

The work done by his hands [the Elohim described as Yahweh's hands] -Psalm 95:5

10 And Elohim called the dry land Earth [yabashah Eretz]; and the (gathering together of the waters) [mikveh] called he Seas: and Elohim saw that it was good [tov].

Here God bestows names upon the works of his hands, as men, imitating him, also do. They are names that exist today in the Hebrew language, and essentially speaking, in all other languages into which the scriptures have been translated. He now named the solid and fluid parts of the globe respectively "Earth" and "Seas."

They are called "seas" because the ocean is not all one undivided expanse of waters, but a congregation of seas, separated one from another by Islands, Continents, and promontories, &c.

In Sanscrit the word for earth is ira, from a root (ar) which signifies "to plough." The result now arrived at, is again pronounced "good," as in the case of each previous work. How good a work it was! and how accurately weighed and adjusted as with apothecaries skill! "who" saith Isaiah,

"hath measured the waters in the hollow (Heb. sheol) of his hand, and meted out heaven with a span, and comprehended the dust of the earth in a measure, and weighed the mountains in scales, and the hills in a balance."

The Christadelphian, Apr 1888

9 And Elohim said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so.

10 And Elohim called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and Elohim saw that it was good.

11 And Elohim said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so.

The time has now come to clothe the naked earth with verdure, and to fill it with those self-propagating forms of vegetation, necessary to the subsistence and sustenance of man and beast, which presently were to be brought upon the scene. God always does the right thing first. Seed-yielding herb (or vegetable), and fruit-yielding trees, provided for the reproduction and continuance of all that God made at the first, as it is to this day.

Further on we are expressly instructed that God

"made every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and every herb of the field before it grew" (Gen. 2:5).

This settles it for us, that the hand of God had directly to do with the first existence of everything we see. Nature's power to reproduce herself year by year is an attribute divinely imparted to her at the period she was first called into existence; for whatever God brought into being He also at the same time provided for its continuance, subject to the laws that control all nature alike.

What an immense work it must have been to produce all the varieties of grass, tree, plant, and herb in creation, including cereals, vegetables, flowers, and mosses, &c., of every imaginable description. The flowers and plants of Palestine alone, says a recent writer, would fill a book. "It was so." This is assuring, standing at the end of a work of such magnitude, and one requiring such infinite knowledge and skill in its execution.

Bro. F. R. Shuttleworth

The Christadelphian, June 1888

12 And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and Elohim saw that it was good.

"And the earth brought forth". This is said in illustration of the last statement that "it was so."

The things called into existence by the fiat of the divine will were now all there in the order of their birth, and the order of their importance or magnitude,-grass, herb, and tree, now a flourishing institution. "God saw that it was good."

There is a human counterpart to this. A workman who undertakes any complete piece of work... will generally cast his eye over the whole when it is finished; feeling either that it comes up to his mind, or falls short of what he aimed at.

Bro. F. R. Shuttleworth

The Christadelphian, June 1888

13 And the evening and the morning were the third day.

The work of the "third day" is now completed, the Elohim having finished that which was assigned them to do, at its commencement. The Creation-week was evidently designed as a model week's work, which it was intended Israel should afterwards copy in the execution of their own labour, and observe in the institutions to which in due time they stood related.

The continued existence of this evening-morning way of reckoning the day, among the Jews and other nations, after the lapse of nearly 6,000 years from its first institution, is a perpetual confirmation of the fact that darkness preceded light, in relation to the constitution of things represented by the earth.

Bro. F. R. Shuttleworth

The Christadelphian, June 1888

14 And Elohim 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:

15 And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so.

16 And Elohim made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also.

17 And Elohim set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth,

18 And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and Elohim saw that it was good.

19 And the evening and the morning were the fourth day.

20 And Elohim said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven.

21 And Elohim created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and Elohim saw that it was good.

22 And Elohim blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth.

23 And the evening and the morning were the fifth day.

24 And Elohim said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so.

20 And Elohim said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven.


If any additional evidence were needed in proof of nephesh khaiyah, "a body of life," in Gen. 2:7, having reference merely to the animal, and not to the spiritual, body, we might direct attention to Moses' use of the phrase in other parts. In Gen. 1:20, the creatures engendered in the waters are collectively styled sheretz nephesh khaiyah, "a moving body of life:" and in verse 24, all kinds of cattle, reptiles, and beasts, are styled collectively nephesh khaiyah.

In Gen. 9:10, 12, 15, 16, nephesh khaiyah is used four times, and in all cases applied to fowl, cattle, and beasts of all flesh; and in Rev. 16:3, we have the phrase,

"every living soul in the sea died."

Had "living souls" in unfigurative language been immortal, they would not have been used as symbolical of things to die.

Thus then, dear reader, a little exercise of your rational faculties enlightened by scripture will enable you readily to perceive the foolishness of the wisdom of this Aion of the Gentiles. It is a wisdom from beneath, relatively to God's.

It is dusty, psychical, and daimoniodal. It is dusty, or of the earth, because it is the vain speculation of the groundling; it is psychical, because it has no higher origin than the thinking of the soul flesh, or body of this death; and it is daimoniodal, or demoniacal, because it is that thinking of the flesh which proceeds from the demons of "the synagogue of the Satan"—Paul's daimonia, or demons, who "forbid to marry, and command to abstain from meats"—"false apostles," and those who claim falsely to be "the successors of the apostles," and the "ambassadors of Jesus Christ."

Consult the Greek New Testament at James 3:15; 1 Tim. 4:1; and 2 Cor. 11:13, and you will see the appropriateness of these remarks.

This wisdom is the crazy thinking of pagan, metaphysical, and clerical flesh and blood. In its ludicrous and pious gravity, it oracularizes its nonsense to its unfledged and gaping nestlings, from the "chairs" of its professorships, and "sacred desks" of its "divinities."

A "living soul," say these reverend wiseacres, in their blandest and holiest tone, and their longest facial grimace, is "an immortal soul"—"that vital, immaterial, active substance, or principle in man, whereby he perceives, remembers, reasons, and wills."

Epicureanly, "it is a subtle air composed of atoms, or primitive corpuscles;" Stoically, "it is a flame, or portion of heavenly light;" Cartesianly, "it is thinking that is the essence of the soul;" and Clerico-psycologically, "it is simple, uncompounded, and immaterial, not composed of matter and form, for matter can never think and move of itself as the soul does"—Bucks' Theol. Dict. Art. Soul.

Thus, their reverences of 1860 have made no advance in soulology from the days of the old Epicureans and Stoics, who mocked at the doctrine of the wandering Jew, who taught that there was no life without body; and that the post mortem life of the dead, depended entirely upon a corporeal resurrection.

The Satan's divines, true to the heathenism with which they have been indoctrinated, join in the mockery of the old fools of Athens, and while they profess to revere Paul, contemptuously repudiate his teaching as "Thomasism," and "gross materialism."

But, if "living soul" be granted to signify what they theologically affirm, then all fish, flesh, and fowl of the air, earth, and sea, must of necessity be immortal souls; for we have seen from the Mosaic use of the phrase, that nephesh khaiyah, rendered "living soul" in the E. V., which they use as authority when it is supposed to favour their speculations—is applied by him to all such.

But this reductio ad absurdum they do not like. They do not like their absurdities carried out to their logical results; very well, then their absurdity must be abandoned as untenable. This we have proved it to be, as all must be convinced, who have more regard for scripture and reason than for the authority and "depths of the Satan as they (the divines) speak."

Man, then, is either alive or dead; and the subject of no betweenity. The breathing thing called man, is either "a body of life," or "a body of death;" or nothing but dust.

If after becoming dust, in which he is reduced to what the unbreathing formation was before its forming was commenced; if after resolution into dust, it were desired that "nothing," or nobody, should become something, it is indispensable that said dust and ashes should be caused to assume form,—to become body again. Then nobody would have become somebody.

This can only be accomplished by the formative energy of Yahweh Elohim; or "the spirit who is the resurrection and the life." When this operation is perfected—when the Lord the Spirit has given life to the body raised; when, in other words, the free electric spirit of the Deity, which is seen in the forked lightning, and heard in the thunder, is embodied in the original ashes of a man*—he becomes a Boanerges, or Son of Thunder; he becomes a body of life—a spirit body—an Eloah, ισαγγελος, "equal to an angel"—a god.

Compare this "New Man in Christ Jesus" when perfected and bearing the image of the heavenly Adam, the Lord from heaven, with that miserable abortion of the Devil's called "an immortal soul;" and the reader will have God's conception of an immortal man, in contrast with the Devil's.

When understood, who can hesitate which conception to embrace? The clergy and the world's philosophers, diabolonians all, prefer the Devil's, which neither he nor they can demonstrate from the word; we prefer God's, which is both wise, rational, and grand.

In the time, then, between these two bodies of life, man has no existence. There is nobody called man. In this dust-and-ashes condition, with nothing left of him but his name or character engraven on the memory of God, the scriptures testify concerning him, saying,

"the dead know not anything; their love, and their hatred, and their envy, is now perished; neither have they any more a portion for the Olahm in any thing done under the sun." "There is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom in Sheol, whither thou goest."—Eccl. 9:5, 6, 10.

The reason of this is, because "the dust returns to the earth as it was; and the spirit (that contained in the nishmath ruach khaiyim) returns to the Elohim who gave it"—ch. 12:7.

Again it is written,

"In death there is no remembrance of thee, O Yahweh."—Ps. 6:5; "Lighten mine eyes lest I sleep the sleep of death"—13:3; Sheol, in 88:3, is termed in verse 6, "the lowest pit, darkness, the deeps;" in verse 11, "destruction;" and in verse 12, "the dark," and "the land of forgetfulness."

In Ps. 143:3, it is said of Messiah,

"The Enemy hath persecuted my soul; he hath smitten my life down to the ground; he hath made me to dwell in darkness as those who have been long dead."

Speaking of man in general, it says,

"His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish—146:4;

 if the thoughts perish in that very day, there is an end of all thinking; consequently, the "Thinking I" is dead; and the Cartesian soul-essence is destroyed.

All the prophets agree with the teaching of these texts. They represent the dead as "dwelling in the dust," and shut up in the earth—Isai. 26:19; and putting Sheol and Death for the subjects of them, Hezekiah saith,

"Sheol cannot praise thee nor death celebrate thee; they that go down into the pit cannot hope for thy truth,"

or the fulfilment of the promises—Isai. 38:18: and Daniel testifies that the dead are sleeping in the dust—ch. 12:2. The New Testament also is in harmony with these. "Lazarus sleeps, and I go to awake him," said Jesus; who afterwards said plainly, "Lazarus is dead." And by Paul it is said, "they who have fallen asleep, the Deity through Jesus will bring out with him; and in the next verse but one, he styles these sleepers "the dead in Christ"—1 Thess. 4:14, 16.

But here we must leave the matter for the present, wishing the reader good speed in his study of the word; and happy deliverance from all the puerilities, traditions, and old wives' fables, of the sincere, pious, dolce far niente reverend respectabilities of that "Angel of Light" at whom Paul glances in 2 Cor. 11:14; whose synagogue of righteousness, disowned of God, is coextensive with the "thinking of the flesh."

Herald of the Kingdom and Age to Come, Jan 1860

*[but not straight from the dust - judgment first - becomes Eloah when counted worthy]

25 And Elohim made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and Elohim saw that it was good.

'...among all these there was not one fit to exercise dominion over the animal world, or to reflect the divine attributes.

26 And Elohim said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

Man in the image of El/Elohim

"The import of the phrase 'in the image, after the likeness' is suggested by the testimony that 'Adam begat a son in his own likeness, after his image, and called his name Seth.' In this respect, Seth stands related to Adam, as Adam did to the Elohim ...

Would anyone be at a loss to know the meaning of Seth's being in the image of his father? The very same thing is meant by Adam being in the image of the Elohim ...

The resemblance therefore of Adam to the Elohim as their image was of bodily form ... In shape, Seth was like Adam, Adam like the Elohim, and the Elohim the image of the invisible Increate, the great and glorious Archetype of the intelligent universe."

Elpis Israel 1.2.

"Incorruptible and living substance, then, is the Body of the Deity; and as the glorified Jesus is the 'Image of the Invisible Theos,' He must have 'parts' ...

He has form and parts, as well as body, and is the great Archetype, or divine Original, after which all the Elohim, or immortal intelligences, of His universe are modelled and made ...

"Now these suggestions are sustained by 'the likeness of the glory of Yahweh' which appeared to Ezekiel. 'Above the firmament,' says this prophet, 'that was over the heads of the four living ones, was the likeness of a throne, as the appearance of a sapphire stone; and upon the likeness of the throne was the likeness as the appearance of a man above upon it ...

This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of Yahweh'-ch. 1:26-8."

Eureka, vol. I, p. 95-6

28 And Elohim blessed them, and Elohim said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.

This command to "replenish the earth," strengthens my previous conclusion, that the earth had been inhabited, at some period anterior to the creation of the six days; and that its population had been all swept away by a catastrophe similar to the Noachic flood. That "replenish" means to fill the earth again, is manifest from the use of the word in the blessing pronounced upon Noah. As it is written,

"and God blessed Noah and his sons, and said unto them, 'be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth.'"

There is no room for dispute here. Every one must admit that it signifies to fill again; for, having been filled by Adam, all his posterity, except eight persons, were swept away by the deluge, and Noah and his sons were to supply their place, or refill it, as at this day. I see, therefore, no good reason why the same word should not be similarly interpreted in both cases; which I have concluded to do.

Elpis Israel 2 .10.

27 So Elohim created man in his own image, in the image of Elohim created he him; male and female created he them.


But, driven from one refuge of falsehood, they fly to another. If the phrase "breath of life" is found to be an argument good for nothing because it proves too much, they then pounce with their talons upon

"man became a living soul,"

and rend it with all the torments of clerical inquisition into a confession that man is inherently immortal. There now, they cry, "do ye not see that as soon as 'the breath of life' was breathed into him, man became a living, that is, an immortal soul?"

The "living soul" of the English version is equivalent with them to "immortal soul" or "never-dying soul;" so that their "divinities" read Gen. 1:26, 27; 2:7, as if they had been written,

"And God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost, three persons in one God, said, Let us make an immortal soul in our image after our likeness: so the Holy Trinity created an immortal soul in his image, in the image of the Holy Trinity created he the soul; male and female created he them after this wise:—The Holy Trinity formed a corporeal soul-casket of the dust of the ground, and breathed into its nostrils a particle of his own divine, incorruptible and undying essence or breath of life; and it became for the casket an immortal soul."

After this fashion the Devil reads scripture. "God," says he,

"is without body or parts, therefore the man made in the image and likeness of the Holy Trinity must be the immortal soul, and not the material casket of the soul. The soul is in the image and likeness of the Deity; consequently the soul is without body or parts; in other words, "thinking is the essence of the soul"

—ergo, upon this Cartesian principle of the Devil's theory, all beasts have immortal souls in the image and likeness of the Deity; for they think as well as man!

But Moses says, "male and female created he them." Hence according to the Devil's logic, "The breath of life" is male and female; for he says, that the breath of life is the immortal soul; and that the immortal soul is the real thinking man. But we read nothing about breath of life being breathed into Eve; are we then to conclude with Mohammed, that "women have no souls;" and that John might truly say he saw a wonder in heaven, when he saw a woman there?

We are simply informed that a woman was builded from one of the Adam's ribs; and that when she was presented to what the Devil regards as the Immortal Thinking I in the corporeal casket, that same thinker said not a word about his immortal self.

He only recognized in the woman a creature of bone and flesh. He did not say,

"This is now spirit of my spirit, and soul of my immortal soul,"

as one might suppose he would had it been a fact.

But, the Devil had not as yet taught the Adam to lie; therefore he did not make such a declaration; but contented himself with stating the simple truth, that she, like himself, out of whom she was taken, was simply living flesh and bones, and the future mother of mankind.

Herald of the Kingdom and Age to Come, Jan 1860

28 And Elohim blessed them, and Elohim said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.

29 And Elohim said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.

30 And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so.

31 And Elohim saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

'... and Yahweh Elohim, on reviewing the stupendous and glorious creation elaborated by the Spirit, pronounced it "VERY GOOD." Then the Elohim, or "Morning Stars sang together, and all the Sons of God shouted for joy" (Job 38:4-7).

E.I. 2.1.

The original condition of the animal world was "very good." Unperverted by the introduction of evil, all its constituents fulfilled the purposes of their existence. Begotten of the same power, and formed from the substance of a common mother, they were all animated by the same spirit, and lived in peace and harmony together. Formed to be living breathing frames, though of different species, in God they lived, and moved, and had their continued being; and displayed His wisdom, power, and handywork.

E.I. 2.3

‭Behold It Was Very Good

Total peace and joy for man are found only in total service to God. That is man's original and "natural" condition.

That must be gained. All life must be given to the effort. All else is degeneration and perversion without promise or hope.

Bro Growcott