What’s the point of Genesis 1-2?
Whenever we come to the opening chapters of the Bible, we usually spend a great deal of time focusing on one thing:
God’s creative work.
This is good and right, to be sure. But too often, it seems our time is spent coming up with ammo for the ongoing creation vs evolution debate.
As important as developing a biblically sound view of how the world came into being is (and it is), in doing so, we sometimes wind up missing the point of the text.
David Murray’s Jesus on Every Page offers a really helpful reminder on this point. Although the creation account has nothing to fear from true scientific inquiry, it is less about science than it is about Jesus—His power, His wisdom, His character and His redemptive work.
From beginning to end, the creation account points us to Jesus. “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth,” Genesis 1:1 tells us.
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made,” expands John 1:1-3.
“[In] these last days [God] has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world. He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power,” explains the author of Hebrews (Heb. 1:2-3a).
Paul likewise tells us, “For by [Jesus] all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together” (Col. 1:16-17).
The New Testament authors refuse to budge on this point: God created the world—and He did it through Jesus. This world is His. “He is Lord of the creation,” Murray writes, “as He further demonstrated when He came to this earth: ‘Who can this be, that even the wind and the sea obey Him!’ Answer? The Creator of them.” (51)
This is the real reason people get in a tizzy about creation vs evolution.
It’s less to do with the particulars of how the world came into being and more to do with an issue of autonomy.
If the world came into being through happenstance, and we’re merely the result of the equation of time + matter + chance successfully adding up again and again and again, then we are beholden to no one.
But if the Bible is true, then Jesus is over us, having made purifications for sins, seated at the right hand of the Most High (Heb. 1:3b). We are not little sovereigns free to run amok.
We are under authority. That’s why people really reject the creation account, and it’s the point that we so often miss.
Jesus is the Creator, and His command for all the earth is clear: Yield.