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*Scripture verses covered in this section's commentary are noted in italics

Genesis 1:6-8 meaning

Verses covered in this passage:

  • Genesis 1:6
  • Genesis 1:7
  • Genesis 1:8

During the second day of creation, God separates the heavens from the earth.

God said, “Let there be an expanse.” The expanse is simply space, space that separates the waters from the waters. This means the waters of the heavens from the waters of the earth. The word waters may mean water gathered in a liquid state or moisture, seeming to imply that the earth was encased in dense moisture (or water). When God separated the waters, He called this space heaven, which is the sky. This was the second day of creation.

The Bible uses the themes of water and fire from beginning to end. 2 Peter 3:5-7 says,  For when they maintain this, it escapes their notice that by the word of God the heavens existed long ago and the earth was formed out of water and by water, through which the world at that time was destroyed, being flooded with water.” God both formed the earth out of water as well as destroying that same earth by water during Noah’s time (Genesis 7)

God promised He would not destroy the earth with water again. 2 Peter 3:7 says “But by His word the present heavens and earth are being reserved for fire, kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men.” We look forward to the New Earth in hope, which will no longer have any sea (Revelation 21:1).

The Hebrew word for Heaven is Hashamayim. Many in the Jewish tradition hold that Hashamayim is a combination of the words Aish which means “fire,” and Mayim which means “water.” They conclude that this construction is due to the physical nature of the universethat it is a balance of judgment and mercy.

Biblical Text

6 Then God said, “Let there be an expanse in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters from the waters.” 7 God made the expanse, and separated the waters which were below the expanse from the waters which were above the expanse; and it was so. 8 God called the expanse heaven. And there was evening and there was morning, a second day.




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