God createth Heaven and Earth, and all things therein, in six days.
1 In the beginning God created heaven, and earth. 2 And the earth was void and empty, and darkness was upon the face of the deep; and the spirit of God moved over the waters. 3 And God said: Be light made. And light was made. 4 And God saw the light that it was good; and he divided the light from the darkness. 5 And he called the light Day, and the darkness Night; and there was evening and morning one day.
6 And God said: Let there be a firmament made amidst the waters: and let it divide the waters from the waters. 7 And God made a firmament, and divided the waters that were under the firmament, from those that were above the firmament, and it was so. 8 And God called the firmament, Heaven; and the evening and morning were the second day. 9 God also said: Let the waters that are under the heaven, be gathered together into one place: and let the dry land appear. And it was so done. 10 And God called the dry land, Earth; and the gathering together of the waters, he called Seas. And God saw that it was good.
11 And he said: Let the earth bring forth the green herb, and such as may seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after its kind, which may have seed in itself upon the earth. And it was so done. 12 And the earth brought forth the green herb, and such as yieldeth seed according to its kind, and the tree that beareth fruit, having seed each one according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. 13 And the evening and the morning were the third day.14 And God said: Let there be lights made in the firmament of heaven, to divide the day and the night, and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days and years: 15 To shine in the firmament of heaven, and to give light upon the earth. And it was so done.
16 And God made two great lights: a greater light to rule the day; and a lesser light to rule the night: and the stars. 17 And he set them in the firmament of heaven to shine upon the earth. 18 And to rule the day and the night, and to divide the light and the darkness. And God saw that it was good. 19 And the evening and morning were the fourth day. 20 God also said: Let the waters bring forth the creeping creature having life, and the fowl that may fly over the earth under the firmament of heaven. …
The creation story itself is a beautiful thing. It shows a loving Creator Who brings order out of the chaos and sets things up in a predictable fashion that gives His creatures a home that they can feel safe in. In Scott Hahn’s book Understanding the Scriptures, Dr. Hahn says that in the first three days God created various spaces: the sky and the light, the seas and the air, and the dry earth itself. In the next three days, God created the creatures that would rule each of those spaces: the sun, moon, and stars to rule the heavens; the creatures of the sea and the birds to rule the sea and sky; and the beasts of land to rule the earth. Then, at the pinnacle of creation, He placed Man over all of these things, charging Adam to care for them all. Being a ruler doesn’t mean using others so that you benefit. Being a ruler means caring for those under your charge. Adam was set up in charge of caring for creation. This, too, is our charge: rule over creation as God asked Adam to do.
When God created the world, He said it was good. This is something that’s important to remember, especially when we feel overwhelmed by bad news that comes from every corner. But everything was created out of love, by Love, and it was good. God does not lie, so we know that the world is a good place. As Catholics, we can embrace the physical world and even our physical bodies – all of these things were created by a good and loving God who created them as good things. And this was His plan in the beginning. God would create Man out of love and a desire to share that love with us. He created us in His own image and likeness – with eternal souls that would enable us to be with Him forever and have a share in His love. God made the world and all that’s in it. And God said it was good.
Sometimes we can forget that bit about the world being good. That’s how it was meant to be. We’ll see soon in our readings how that was lost to us, but we must remember one thing: God’s plan was for a beautiful life of love an peace. God made the world good.
Meditation text and pictures © Christine Johnson