“Gap or no Gap”
Lets argue "NO" Gap first
Gen 1:3 And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.
Gen 1:4 And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.
Gen 1:5 And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.
From this point on, we will look at the different days of creation. First, there is a question as to if verses one and two are part of day one's creation which starts in verse three, or if they happened at some point in time prior to day one's events. In other words, is there a "gap" of time between verses two and three similar to the supposed "gap" between verses one and two.
The context of Scripture would suggest that verses one and two are all part of day one's creation. The question would arise as to why God would create the heaven and earth, and then stop for a period of time before moving on with His creation. The fact is, there is no reason why He would.
Also, if there was a period of time between God creating the heaven and earth in verse one, and His spirit moving upon the face of the deep... Or God saying "let there be light" in verse two, then we would see something like, "and in the process of time" written in somewhere before one of those acts of God. This phrase is found in all of the following verses.... Gen_4:3 Gen_38:12 Exo_2:23 Jdg11:4, 2Ch_21:19 and surely it would also appear here if that was the case. Instead, we see the word "and" at the beginning of verses two, which would indicate a continual event.
Also, there are no other verses in the whole Bible that would indicate that there was a period of time, or a "gap" anywhere in these verses... unless it is taken out of context or twisted around like some would like to do.
Now, lets take a look at
"The Gap Theory"
In this view, students of the Bible see a gap between verses one and two in Genesis one. They say that "In the beginning" was actually millions, billions, or even more years in the past. They say that Earth, as we know it, is not the first time God has created civilization here on planet earth.
Further, they will argue that verse three actually starts the six days of creation which apply to our Earth now. Many will go on to say that at verse three, the days of creation are literal 24 hour periods of time, thus our "current" earth is around seven thousand years old. A few who hold to the gap theory will still argue that the days of creation are undetermined amounts of time.
One of the things they point to in arguing this stand is that the word in verse two "was" should actually be translated "became" It is true that the word "was" comes from the Hebrew word "haw-yaw", and can mean either "exist, was, become". The argument here is that, in verse one, we have God's original creation somewhere in the distant past. Then, something happened between verses one and two that destroyed God's creation, and in verse two we find God re-creating earth as we know it, for our age.
But, what could have possible been so great as to have destroyed something that God created? For this answer, people who believe in the Gap theory will turn to Isaiah 14:12-17. In this portion of Scripture we read about Satan being kicked out of heaven. There are many things in this portion of Scripture that would seem to indicate that when Satan was cast out of heaven, his fall to earth destroyed the earth as it was then.
To start with, we read in the last part of verse twelve... "how art thou cast down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations". Here, the word "weaken" literally means "decay, overthrow, waist away". Then in verse sixteen we read further that those who see Satan will say of him, "is this the man who made the earth to tremble, that did shake the kingdoms?" But, the verse that really seems to spell destruction for the Earth is found in verse seventeen. Here we read, "That made the world as a wilderness, and destroyed the cities thereof..."
These verses, put together, would seem to indicate that when Satan was cast out of heaven, he fell to earth and the result of this was Satan destroying the earth completely, thus bringing about the need for God to re-create it, starting at the end of verse two.
So, what should we believe?
Actually, the answer to this question is irrelevant. It really does not matter if you believe there is a gap here or not. The truth is, If there is a gap, it does not apply to us. God is eternal. He could very well have created MANY other civilizations here on earth prior to us. But, if this is the case, none of those creations apply to us. This is why God does not tell us anything about it. He has only recorded in Scripture, those things that we need to know for us to be right with Him.
There is one thing that we can find much comfort in however...no matter how bad Satan can mess things up, God can restore it. No matter how bad one has destroyed their life, there is always the blessed reality that God can create a new person in you. Satan may destroy, but our God is the God of new creations. He can restore you.
Answer the questions below. If you miss a question, go back and study that portion of the class and then retake the test. Once you have received a 100% you may proceed to the next class. You DO NOT have to submit this test for grading. Only the final test will be submitted.