The first day had been made, with an evening and a morning. And God saw that it was good.
On the second day, God said, “Let there be a firmament (sky) and let it divide the waters.” In this way God created the open sky above the earth, and He called it “Heaven.”
On the third day, God spoke once more. “Let the waters be gathered together into one place and let the dry land appear.” And that’s just what happened.
It’s possible that there was only one large continent, instead of North and South America, Africa, Australia and the others. Scientists have found evidence that the different continents may originally have split apart from a huge land mass, surrounded by water. But no matter, God called the dry land “earth” and the water “seas.” There were freshwater rivers and lakes, too.
God didn’t stop there. “Let the earth bring forth grass,” He said. Suddenly, the brown, bare earth was covered with a carpet of lush, green grass waving in the breeze. Then He commanded the earth to bring forth all kinds of plants, bushes and trees, each containing seeds so that it could reproduce itself. And the earth obeyed His voice. The flowers and plants and trees sprang up. God had designed all these lovely growing things in great detail. He was pleased that everything was growing just as He had planned. God saw that this was good, too. “And the evening and the morning were the third day.”
The Bible tells us that on the fourth day God made lights in the heavens to divide day from night, and to be for signs and seasons. God made the sun for our solar system. This great light would shine in the day. A second light, the moon, would shine at night. And God was happy with what He had created.
“So the evening and the morning were the fourth day.”
When the sun rose on the fifth morning, the only sound was the lapping of waves and the rustling of leaves. There were no animals to make sounds, or people to sing and shout and laugh. But God was about to change that.
“Let the waters abound with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth,” He commanded. At His word, the rivers and lakes and oceans became full of fish of all sizes and colors-great whales sounding, playful dolphins splashing, starfish and coral and sea anemones, and all the other water-dwellers He had designed.
The air was full of birds-great eagles, tiny humming birds, meadowlarks,
sea birds and marsh birds-all singing, flying and building. And God saw once more that it was good. “So the evening and the morning were the fifth day.”
On the sixth day, God commanded all the land animals to appear, and they were right there, from mastodons to field mice. God said each would reproduce its own kind.
God had made a special plan for creating the rulers of this world. He had planned just what they would be like. Now the time had come to make them. God said, “Let us make mankind in our image.” And that’s what They did.
“In the image of God He created ... male and female,” the Bible says. Not with a command this time, but with His own loving hands, God made Adam and Eve.
He placed Adam and Eve in the beautiful Garden of Eden. He told them the whole world belonged to them. They were to rule it, take care of it and all the animals in it. And they were to fill it with people—their children and grandchildren and great grandchildren, down through the ages. He showed them the plants and fruit-bearing trees in the garden. He explained that these were for food. All the animals ate grass and leaves and plants. They didn’t hunt and kill each other. There was no death or fear in the whole beautiful world.
“So the evening and the morning were the sixth day.” God looked over what He had made and was pleased. He had finished His work of creation.
When the seventh day came, God rested. He blessed the seventh day and made it holy. The seventh day is referred to again in the Ten Commandments:
“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy ... For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea and all that in them is, and rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it “ (Exodus 20:8-11).