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God created the earth and the earth was without form

Discussion in 'Creation & Theistic Evolution' started by FreeGrace2, May 13, 2021.

  1. FreeGrace2

    FreeGrace2 Senior Veteran

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    This is for Young Earth Creationists:

    Since planet earth HAS form or shape, what does the Bible mean by a "formless earth"? How is that even possible, since all solid objects have a form or shape?

    Even more difficult, where in Genesis 1 does God address His "formless earth" and give it some form or shape?

    So how did the earth become a perfect sphere if God created the earth without form? And why doesn't the "creation account" give us any details about this?

    To be clear, I am a very conservative evangelical and I do believe Genesis 1 describes the "six days" to be literal 24 hours days.

    But I'm interested in how the YEC will (or if) answer my questions about a "formless earth".
     
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  2. myst33

    myst33 Well-Known Member

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    Just a note: the other textual version, the Septuagint, uses "the earth was not visible and was not prepared".

    Meaning, the dry land was still under the waters.

    ---

    I am not an YEC.
     
  3. Tree of Life

    Tree of Life Hide The Pain

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    Genesis 1 is the story of how God brought the tohu wavohu to a place of shalom and good order through his triumphant word. God's word brings order and form to formless things and brings life to things that are void.

    God's word separates light from darkness, land from water, land from sky, the waters above from the waters beneath, fixes lights in the sky, establishes seasons and rhythms, establishes day and night. All of that is providing "form". "Without form" would mean there is no order or separation. No day and night. No light and dark. No land and water. Etc.
     
  4. d taylor

    d taylor Well-Known Member

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    -​

    The Bible never states the earth is a sphere that is from science.
     
  5. renniks

    renniks Well-Known Member

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    The earth was perhaps a mass of energy with the potential to be formed into matter, along with the rest of the creation. I too believe in six actual days but not necessarily a young universe. I'm not sure time existed as such before God created matter, so "old" might mean ageless.
     
  6. Carl Emerson

    Carl Emerson Well-Known Member

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    This is as close as it gets...

    Isaiah 40:22
    It is He who sits above the circle of the earth, And its inhabitants are like grasshoppers, Who stretches out the heavens like a curtain And spreads them out like a tent to live in.
     
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  7. d taylor

    d taylor Well-Known Member

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    The original creation in Genesis 1:1 was flooded somewhere between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2 satan fell and God judged satan's former dwelling place (The earth in Genesis 1:1)

    And no this is not so millions of years can be added to the creation account.
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2021
  8. Lost4words

    Lost4words Jesus I Trust In You Supporter

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    I can see God planning His creation thinking that He will make every star and planet round except for the earth! :doh:
     
  9. FreeGrace2

    FreeGrace2 Senior Veteran

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    OK, but every English translation has "without form". So let's deal with that.

    How can the earth exist yet be "without form"? That's the question for the YEC.
     
  10. FreeGrace2

    FreeGrace2 Senior Veteran

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    Where do you read any of this in Genesis 1? Could you please clarify?

    v.1 says "God created the heavens and EARTH". v.2 goes on to say "and the earth was formless."

    So, can you explain how a solid object can have no form or shape? That's the question of this thread.

    All well and good, but does not explain how a solid object that has no form or shape.

    It must be explained if one wants to hold on to the traditional rendering of v.2.

    There is a much better answer, but I'm interested in how YEC will respond, if any.
     
  11. FreeGrace2

    FreeGrace2 Senior Veteran

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    But none of this addresses how God created an object that is formless.

    And then there is nothing in ch 1 that addresses God giving this ol' planet earth a shape.

    Why is that?
     
  12. FreeGrace2

    FreeGrace2 Senior Veteran

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    Or perhaps not. v.1 is very clear. God created the earth. If God didn't really create a spherical planet that we call earth, why did Moses call it "earth"? He would have said "God created a mass of energy" and the mass of energy was formless.

    Do you believe that all of ch 1 represents the story of creation, over 6 literal days, or instead, a restoration of the planet over 6 literal days?
     
  13. Tree of Life

    Tree of Life Hide The Pain

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    The Hebrew word “tohu” is translated as “formless” but does not necessarily refer to something that is immaterial or absolutely without shape. It can simply mean “empty” or “without structure”. I would not press the meaning so far that it must refer to something without any shape at all.
     
  14. FreeGrace2

    FreeGrace2 Senior Veteran

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    So all this took only a split second to occur? C'mon man. You added Satan's fall to the mix, so are you hinting that he had something to do with the condition of the earth?
     
  15. SongOnTheWind

    SongOnTheWind Well-Known Member

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    Interesting! Of course God could make something out of nothing if He so chooses. I can only imagine the amount of energy in speaking the entire em spectrum into being (as we know visible light is created on day 4). The bible describes the heavens (the stars) are the handiwork of His fingers. I can only imagine the size of His hands. How great is our God!

    I too am struggling to picture the earth without form. Some say the devil destroyed it (between verse one and two), and some think that he won't rest until he destroys all of God's creation once again.

    The bible does tell us there will be a new heaven and a new earth.

    A third earth, perhaps?

    Thoughts, please!!
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2021
  16. FreeGrace2

    FreeGrace2 Senior Veteran

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    Actually, a thorough study of the word "tohu" as rendered in the other occurrences in Scripture reveal a completely different idea.

    For example, in Isa 45:18

    New Living Translation
    For the LORD is God, and he created the heavens and earth and put everything in place. He made the world to be lived in, not to be a place of empty chaos. “I am the LORD,” he says, “and there is no other.

    New American Standard Bible NASB 1995, NASB 1977
    For this is what the LORD says, He who created the heavens (He is the God who formed the earth and made it, He established it and did not create it as a waste place, but formed it to be inhabited): “I am the LORD, and there is no one else.

    Amplified Bible
    For the LORD, who created the heavens (He is God, who formed the earth and made it; He established it and did not create it to be a wasteland, but formed it to be inhabited) says this, “I am the LORD, and there is no one else.

    Christian Standard Bible
    For this is what the LORD says — the Creator of the heavens, the God who formed the earth and made it, the one who established it (he did not create it to be a wasteland, but formed it to be inhabited) — he says, “I am the LORD, and there is no other.

    American Standard Version
    For thus saith Jehovah that created the heavens, the God that formed the earth and made it, that established it and created it not a waste, that formed it to be inhabited: I am Jehovah; and there is none else.

    English Revised Version
    For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; he is God; that formed the earth and made it; he established it, he created it not a waste, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD; and there is none else.

    Good News Translation
    The LORD created the heavens--he is the one who is God! He formed and made the earth--he made it firm and lasting. He did not make it a desolate waste, but a place for people to live. It is he who says, "I am the LORD, and there is no other god.

    International Standard Version
    For this is what the LORD says, who created the heavens— he is God, and the one who formed the earth and made it, and he is the one who established it; he didn't create it for chaos, but formed it to be inhabited— "I am the LORD and there is no other.

    JPS Tanakh 1917
    For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens, He is God; That formed the earth and made it, He established it, He created it not a waste, He formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD, and there is none else.

    NET Bible
    For this is what the LORD says, the one who created the sky--he is the true God, the one who formed the earth and made it; he established it, he did not create it without order, he formed it to be inhabited--"I am the LORD, I have no peer.


    New Heart English Bible
    For thus says the LORD who created the heavens, the God who formed the earth and made it, who established it and did not create it a waste, who formed it to be inhabited: "I am the LORD, and there is no other.

    World English Bible
    For thus says Yahweh who created the heavens, the God who formed the earth and made it, who established it and didn't create it a waste, who formed it to be inhabited: "I am Yahweh; and there is no other.

    Now, here is the issue. If one accepts the traditional rendering of Gen 1:2 a conflict and contradiction is created.

    Gen 1:2 says God created the earth tohu.

    Yet, Isa 45:18 says God did not create the earth tohu.

    So, regardless of what translation is used, it is the SAME WORD in both passages. And a contradiction between the verses.

    Or consider Jer 4:23

    American Standard Version
    I beheld the earth, and, lo, it was waste and void; and the heavens, and they had no light.

    Aramaic Bible in Plain English
    I looked in the earth, and behold, chaos and emptiness, and to the Heavens, and their light is not there

    English Revised Version
    I beheld the earth, and, lo, it was waste and void; and the heavens, and they had no light.

    Good News Translation
    I looked at the earth--it was a barren waste; at the sky--there was no light.

    JPS Tanakh 1917
    I beheld the earth, And, lo, it was waste and void; And the heavens, and they had no light.

    NET Bible
    "I looked at the land and saw that it was an empty wasteland. I looked up at the sky, and its light had vanished.

    New Heart English Bible
    I saw the earth, and, look, it was waste and void; and the heavens, and they had no light.

    World English Bible
    I saw the earth, and, behold, it was waste and void; and the heavens, and they had no light.

    Young's Literal Translation
    I looked to the land, and lo, waste and void, And unto the heavens, and their light is not.

    The website biblehub.com shows 10 occurrences of "tohu".

    Gen 1:2 - was formless
    Isa 45:18 - it a waste place,
    Isa 45:19 - Me in a waste place
    1 Sam 12:21 - for they [are] vain.
    Job 26:7 - empty space
    Isa 24:10 - of chaos
    Isa 34:11 - of desolation
    Isa 44:9 - of them futile,
    Isa 59:4 - in confusion
    Jer 4:23 - waste/wasteland
     
  17. BeyondET

    BeyondET Well-Known Member Supporter

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    let the waters below be gathered into one place, in the shape of one.
     
  18. d taylor

    d taylor Well-Known Member

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    Genesis address God's creation, it does not address God creating a planet (because God did not create a planet, science did)

    God's creation (earth) in Genesis 1:1 is covered in water Genesis 1:2 Then God begins His work of creating the earth for humans so He brings light into work place (did not want to work in the dark) Genesis 1:3.

    Now God separates this huge mass of water He flooded His Genesis 1:1 creation with. He now creates a raqia (dome) that separates the waters of Genesis 1:2 that were covering the earth. After this separation of this huge mass of water, the waters left below the raqia, He gathers into one place and then brings forth the one piece of circular land mass (earth) Genesis 1:9. This single land mass is surrounded by the waters which were gathered into one place called seas Genesis 1:10. Then God begins to work on the large land mass He brought fourth out of the waters Genesis 1:11

    If a person gets a planet out of Genesis chapter 1 they are simply reading it into Genesis because of science, not because of the Bible.
     
  19. d taylor

    d taylor Well-Known Member

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    Amount of time, could have been a day, two days a week. How ever long it was long enough for satan to have a presence in the garden of God and to let sin into his perfect being. Bringing about his fall and judgment.
     
  20. SongOnTheWind

    SongOnTheWind Well-Known Member

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    Please explain how science created earth.
     
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