OceanSide church of Christ
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Gap Theory, Genesis 1:2
Victor M. Eskew
Since the days of Darwin, evolution has become a very popular theory of origins. There are some who are religious who accept the teachings of evolution. Because they are religious, they believe the Bible. Genesis 1, however, does not harmonize with the long, progressive nature of evolution. Attempts have been made, however, to bring agreement between evolution and Genesis 1. One of these attempts centers in a theory called “The Gap Theory.”
The Gap Theory teaches two creations. Those who hold to this teaching believe that the first creation is found in Genesis 1:1. During this creation, evolution worked its magic. The second creation, we are told, begins in Genesis 1:3. This creation involves the six-day period of creation. Genesis 1:2 is the “gap” between the two creations. The Gap Theorists argue that the first “was” in Genesis 1:2 could be translated “became.” This would cause the verse to read as follows: “And the earth became without form and void…” The Gap Theory holds that the original creation was radically ended by a catastrophic event. The world that took billions of years to evolve came to an end. This is how they account for evolution.
Books have been written to refute the Gap Theory. We will only mention one answer in this article. That answer is found in Mark 10:6. Jesus is speaking, and says: “But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female.” Jesus says that man was made at the “beginning of the creation.” The beginning of the creation is found in Genesis 1:1. If billions of years transpired between Genesis 1:1 and Genesis 1:27, then man was not made at the beginning of creation. Jesus would be wrong.
Some might argue that Jesus is referring to the creation that began in Genesis 1:3. This causes us to ask other questions. How much evolution occurred during the first creation? Did the so-called “early men” develop during the “first creation”? Did man completely evolve during that period? If so, then Adam was not the first man. Yet, the Bible is clear that Adam was the first man (I Cor. 15:45).
Unless one believes in the theory of evolution, he would never assume there is a gap found in Genesis 1:2. A casual reading of the text would not indicate this. Too, there is not one major translation that replaces the word “was” with the word “became” in Genesis 1:2. The Gap Theory is a fabrication of man that attempts to prove another fabrication of man called “evolution.” It involves one who is interpreting the Bible in eisegesis instead of exegesis.