The story of creation is recorded in Genesis 1 and it is broken down in six days. On each of the days of creation, God created something(s) that cumulatively added to the completion of the work of creation. After creating everything in 6 days, he rested on day 7 and this is the genesis of the law of the sabbath.
So, what did God crate on each day?
The table below summarises the days of creation:
|What was created?
|land, seas, and vegetation
|Sun, moon, and stars
|Birds and aquatic creatures
|Land Animals and Mankind
Let us take a closer look at each of these days of creation and what was created on them below:
Day 1: Light
And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day. Genesis 1:3-5
The first thing that God created was light. God spoke light into existence and then proceeded to separate light from darkness. We can therefore infer that time was created on the first day because this is the day when days and nights were created. Today, time is measured based on days with a complete day making 24 hours. The scripture also notes that God saw that the light was good. Even though this statement is repeated in all the other days of creation, the first day’s comment was specifically directed at the light (and not the darkness). This can be interpreted to mean that God wants us to walk in light (righteousness) and not darkness. In the words of John, God is light and in him, there is no darkness at all (1 John 1:5).
Day 2: Heavens / Sky
And God said, “Let there be a vault between the waters to separate water from water.” So God made the vault and separated the water under the vault from the water above it. And it was so. God called the vault “sky.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the second day. Genesis 1:6-8
On the second day of creation, God created the heavens. He did this by separating the heavens and the earth. This is the day when Earth took form (because it had initially been created as formless and shapeless). By separating the sky from the earth, the earth became a suspended sphere in the universe.
Day 3: Land, Seas, Vegetation
And God said, “Let the water under the sky be gathered to one place, and let dry ground appear.” And it was so. God called the dry ground “land,” and the gathered waters he called “seas.” And God saw that it was good.
Then God said, “Let the land produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds.” And it was so. The land produced vegetation: plants bearing seed according to their kinds and trees bearing fruit with seed in it according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good. And there was evening, and there was morning—the third day (Genesis 1:9-13).
On day three of creation, God created land seas, and vegetation. He started by containing the waters into seas thereby allowing the dry land to appear. As recorded in the book of Job, it is God who set the boundaries for the ocean and told the waters how far they to go on the shore (Job 38:11). God then commanded the plants to appear on the dry land and they did. By the third day of creation, we see the order of God. See, plants need three things to grow – dirt, water, and light. So God starts by creating light, water, and dirt. After all those were in place, he proceeded to create the plants.
Day 4: Sun, Moon, Stars
And God said, “Let there be lights in the vault of the sky to separate the day from the night, and let them serve as signs to mark sacred times, and days and years, and let them be lights in the vault of the sky to give light on the earth.” And it was so. God made two great lights—the greater light to govern the day and the lesser light to govern the night. He also made the stars. God set them in the vault of the sky to give light on the earth, to govern the day and the night, and to separate light from darkness. And God saw that it was good. And there was evening, and there was morning—the fourth day. (Genesis 1:14-19).
The sun, moon, and stars were created on day 4. The sun is referred to as the greater light while the moon is referred to as the lesser light. The fact that God created light on day 1 and then the sun on day four is as incredible as is controversial. However, there was no mistake in this order that was documented by Moses because God wanted mankind to remember that He is the source of light. This is why the Bible refers to him as the light. In fact, revelation says that there is no need for the sun and moon in heaven because God is the source of light there (Rev. 21:23).
Day 5: Birds and Aquatic Creatures
And God said, “Let the water teem with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the vault of the sky.” So God created the great creatures of the sea and every living thing with which the water teems and that moves about in it, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the water in the seas, and let the birds increase on the earth.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the fifth day. (Genesis 1:21-22).
Day five was when the birds of the air and all the aquatic creatures were created. It is significant that the Bible uses the word creatures and not fish. This means that all the reptiles, mammals, and fish that live in water were created on day five. The command also included the microscopic life forms. The birds of the air were also created on day 5. Even though most birds are classified as terrestrial, there are lots of them that are aquatic because they spend most of their time fishing or hunting for other sources of food in water. This may explain why God created the aquatic creatures and the birds on the same day.
Day 6: Land Animals and Man
And God said, “Let the land produce living creatures according to their kinds: the livestock, the creatures that move along the ground, and the wild animals, each according to its kind.” And it was so. God made the wild animals according to their kinds, the livestock according to their kinds, and all the creatures that move along the ground according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good. Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals,[a] and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” Genesis 1:25-26
Day number six is the final day of creation and on this day, God started by creating the terrestrial animals. As was the case when creating the birds and aquatic animals, God also commanded them to produce after their kind. After he had created the animals, God then went to the most significant part of creation – he created man in his own image and likeness. Man was then given dominion over the entire creation. Again, the fact that man was created on day six after everything else had been created demonstrates the order of God. He started by creating a habitable earth before he placed man on it.
Genesis introduces the story of creation by noting that God created the heavens and the earth. At this point, the earth is described as shapeless, empty, and covered in darkness. What followed this is the 6 days of creation where the earth took shape, darkness was separated from light, and the emptiness filled (e.g. with animals)