Chapter 23: Creation Comparisons Days One thru Five

Chapter Twenty-Three: Creation Comparisons—Days One thru Five
            The Genesis 1 account is the baseline and appears in the left-hand column. The Moses and Abraham accounts are in columns two and three, respectively. Words not in Genesis are in bold type. Following each day’s scriptural accounts is a brief bulleted commentary on a few of the differences.  
INTRODUCTION
Genesis 1
Moses 2
Abraham 4

1   And it came to pass that the Lord spake unto Moses, saying: Behold, I reveal unto you concerning this heaven, and this earth; write the words which I speak. I am the Beginning and the End, the Almighty God; by mine Only Begotten I created these things; yea, in the beginning I created the heaven, and the earth upon which thou standest.

1    And then the Lord said: Let us go down. And they went down at the beginning, and they, that is the Gods, organized and formed the heavens and the earth.

·      Moses received this revelation from God who identified himself by two of His names—the Beginning and the End and Almighty God. 
·      Moses states that God’s “Only Begotten” facilitated the Creation.

DAY ONE OF CREATION
Genesis 1
Moses 2
Abraham 4
2   And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. 


  And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.

4   And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.



5   And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day. 
2   And the earth was without form, and void; and I caused darkness to come up upon the face of the deep; and my Spirit moved upon the face of the water; for I am God.




3   And I, God, said: Let there be light; and there was light.



4  And I, God, saw the light; and that light was good. And I, God, divided the light from the darkness. 




5  And I, God, called the light Day; and the darkness, called Night; and this I did by the word of my power, and it was done as I spake; and the evening and the morning were the first day. 
2   And the earth, after it was formed, was empty and desolate,   because they had not formed anything but the earthand darkness reigned upon the face of the deep, and the Spirit of the Gods was brooding upon the face of the waters. 

3   And they (the Gods) said: Let there be light; and there was light. 


4  And they (the Godscomprehended the light, for it was bright; and they divided the light, or caused it to be divided, from the darkness. 

5  And the Gods called the light Day, and the darkness they called Night. And it came to pass that from the evening until morning they called night; and from the morning until the evening they called day; and this was the first, or the beginning, of that which they called day and night.

·      The Genesis account is written in third-person singular—“God.” 
·      The Moses account is written in first-person singular—“I God.” 
·      The Abraham account in written in third-person plural—“They (the Gods).” 
·      Moses explains that the process happens by the spoken word. This is corroborated and further explained in the Doctrine and Covenants: “I have created by the word of my power, which is the power of my Spirit” (29:30).

DAY TWO OF CREATION
Genesis 1
Moses 2
Abraham 4
6   And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. 




7   And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so. 

8   And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day. 
6   And again, I, God, said: Let there be a firmament in the midst of the water, and it was so, even as I spake; and I said: Let it divide the waters from the waters; and it was done; 

7   And I, God, made the firmament and divided the waters, yea, the great waters under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament, and it was so even as I spake. 

8   And I, God, called the firmament Heaven; and the evening and the morning were the second day. 
6   And the Gods also said: Let there be an expanse in the midst of the waters, and it shall divide the waters from the waters. 




7   And the Gods ordered the expanseso that it divided the waters which were under the expanse from the waters which were above the expanse; and it was so, even as they ordered


8   And the Gods called the expanse, Heaven. And it came to pass that it was from evening until morning that they called night; and it came to pass that it was from morning until evening that they called day; and this was the second time that they called night and day.

·      The power of the Creator’s spoken words is illustrated in the second day of Creation with the phrase “even as I spake,” which is used four times in Moses. 
·      The comparative phrase in Abraham, “Even as they [the Gods] ordered,” adds authority and is found twice. 
·      The use of the word firmament in Genesis and Moses is expanse in Abraham where it is used eleven times. The only other time expanse is found in all scripture is about the Creation and the Lord’s role. “Thus saith the Lord your God, even Jesus Christ . . . , the same which looked upon the wide expanse of eternity . . . before the world was made. . . . I am the same which spake, and the world was made, and all things came by me” (D&C 38:1–3). 
·      You probably noticed in Abraham that “second day” adds the phrase “second time,” which may mean that a day is not twenty-four hours but an undisclosed length of time.

DAY THREE OF CREATION
Genesis 1
Moses 2
Abraham 4
9   And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so. 

10  And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that it was good. 

11  And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so. 

12  And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good. 



13  And the evening and the morning were the third day.

 9   And I, God, said: Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and it was so; and I, God, said: Let there be dry land; and it was   so. 


10  And I, God, called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters, called I the Sea; and I, God, saw that all things which I had made were good.


11  And I, God, said: Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, the fruit treeyielding fruit, after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed should   be in itself upon the earth, and it was so even as I spake


12  And the earth brought forth grass, every herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed should be in itself, after his kind; and I, God, saw that all things which I had made were good;





13  And the evening   and the morning were the third day.
 9   And the Gods ordered, saying: Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the earth come up dry; and it was so as they ordered;




10  And the Gods pronounced the dry land, Earth; and the gathering together of the waters, pronounced they, Great Waters; and the Gods saw that they were obeyed




11  And the Gods said: Let us prepare the earth to bring forth grass; the herb yielding seed; the fruit tree yielding fruit, after his kind, whose seed in itself yieldeth its own likeness upon the earth; and it was so, even as they ordered. 




12  And the Gods organized the earth to bring forth grass from its own seed, and the herb to bring forth herb from its own seed, yielding seed after his kind; and the earth to bring forth the tree from its own seed, yielding fruit, whose seed could only bring forth the same in itself, after his kind; and the Gods saw that they were obeyed

13  And it came to pass that they numbered the daysfrom the evening until the morning they called night; and it came to pass, from the morning until the evening they called day; and it was the third time.

·      The phrase, “Let the earth bring forth grass” in Genesis and Moses is less explanatory than the Abraham account, in which four verbs describe creation—the Gods prepare and organize; they order and are obeyed: “And the Gods said: Let us prepare the earth to bring forth grass; the herb yielding seed; the fruit tree yielding fruit, after his kind, whose seed in itself yieldeth its own likeness upon the earth; and it was so, even as they ordered. And the Gods organized the earth to bring forth grass from its own seed, and the herb to bring forth herb from its own seed, yielding seed after his kind; and the earth to bring forth the tree from its own seed, yielding fruit, whose seed could only bring forth the same in itself, after his kind; and the Gods saw that they were obeyed” (Abraham 4:11–12; italics added). 
·      The fact that inanimate creations obey means that they have consciousness. They know the sound of the Creator’s voice. They listen and obey. “The winds and the waves shall obey thy will” (“Master, the Tempest Is Raging,” Hymns, no. 105). 

DAY FOUR OF CREATION
Genesis 1
Moses 2
Abraham 4
14   And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years: 




15   And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so. 

16   And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also. 









17   And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth, 






18   And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good. 





19   And the evening and the morning were the fourth day.
14   And I, God, said: Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven, to divide the day from the night, and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and for years; 



15   And let them be   for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth; and   it was so. 

16   And I, God, made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night, and the greater light was the sun, and the lesser light was the moon; and the stars also were made even according to my word. 

17   And I, God, set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth, 






18   And the sun to rule over the day, and the moon to rule over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness; and I, God, saw that all things which I had made were good; 

19   And the evening and the morning were the fourth day. 
14   And the Gods organized the lights in the expanse of the heaven, and caused them to divide the day from the night; and organized them to be for signs and for seasons, and for days and for years; 


15   And organized them to be for lights in the expanse of the heaven to give light upon the earth; and it was so. 

16   And the Gods organized the two great lights, the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night; with the lesser light they set the stars also;








17   And the Gods set them in the expanse of the heavens, to give light upon the earth, and to rule over the day and over the night, and to cause to divide the light from the darkness.

18   And the Gods watched those things which they had ordered until they obeyed.








19   And it came to pass that it was from evening until morning that it was night; and it came to pass that it was from morning until evening that it was day; and it was the fourth time.

·      In the Abraham account, creation unfolds not instantaneously in a whiz, bang, boom but as a process: “And the Gods watched those things which they had ordered until they obeyed” (verse 18). 
·      The aspect of “made” in Genesis and Moses compared to “organized” in Abraham points to orderliness and timeliness. 
·      The Gods give oversight as the process progresses. The Gods watch to make sure there is follow through. “And the Gods saw that they would be obeyed” (Abraham 4:21). 

DAY FIVE OF CREATION
Genesis 1
Moses 2
Abraham 4
20   And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven. 

21   And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good. 





22   And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth. 





23   And the evening and the morning were the fifth day. 








24   And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so. 

25   And God made   the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good. 
20   And I, God, said: Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl which may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven. 


21   And I, God, created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind; and I, God, saw that all things which I had created were good. 




22   And I, God, blessed them, saying: Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the sea; and let fowl multiply in the earth;





23   And the evening   and the morning were the fifth day. 








24   And I, God, said: Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping things, and   beasts of the earth after their kind, and it was so; 



25   And I, God, made the beasts of the earth after their kind, and cattle after their kind, and everything which creepeth upon the earth after his kind; and I, God, saw that all these things were good. 

20  And the Gods said: Let us prepare the waters to bring forth abundantly the moving creatures that have life; and the fowl, that they may fly above the earth in the open expanse of heaven. 

21   And the Gods prepared the waters that they might bring forth great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters were to bring forth abundantly after their kind; and every winged fowl after their kind. And the Gods saw that they would be obeyed, and that their plan was good

22   And with the lesser light they set the stars also said: We will bless them, and cause them to be fruitful and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas or great waters; and cause the fowl to multiply in the earth. 

23   And it came to pass that it was from evening until morning that they called night; and it came to pass that it was from morning until evening that they called day; and it was the fifth time

24   And the Gods prepared the earth to bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle and creeping things, and beasts of the earth after their kind; and it was so, as they had said


25   And the Gods organized the earth to bring forth   the beasts after their kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after its kind; and the Gods saw they would obey

·      Day, or time period, five ends with the Creator’s assessment of His work. In Genesis He says: “It was good.” In Moses He says: “I, God, saw that all these things were good.” In Abraham, “The Gods saw that their plan was good.” 
·      Both Genesis and Moses command, “Be fruitful,” as though it were intrinsically within the creature to do that. Abraham makes it the Gods who cause them to be fruitful. He blessed them in marriage.

·      The importance of obedience is again emphasized. “And the Gods saw [the living creatures] would obey” (Abraham 4:25).
       
               Postscript: My daughter Anne pointed out to me that Moses 2 can be read as a conversation between two Gods. In many verses it is as if one God gives the instruction and the other God does the work. 
       
       (c) Marilynne Todd Linford, 2017





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Chapter 10: The Words of Adam and Eve