The Book of Genesis: Introduction to God’s Plan
The book of Genesis reveals the foundations of what God is doing. It reveals the beginning of His creation and introduces His plan. What can we learn from it?
God has a plan. The Bible reveals that God established His plan long before mankind was even created (1 Peter 1:20; Revelation 13:8). God didn’t just create the universe, earth and human beings and then slowly figure out along the way what His purpose was for all of it. Before anything physical was created, He had a specific plan for everything He would create.
Though the specifics of God’s plan are revealed throughout the Bible, many details about it are introduced in the opening chapters of the book of Genesis. Genesis is a book of foundations, and it is necessary reading in order to understand what God is doing.
The creation of mankind
The book of Genesis introduces us to human beings and gives us insight into what we are and what our purpose is! We learn that mankind was created to be very different from the rest of God’s creation. When God created man, He made a clear distinction between humans and animals. The primary distinction is that He created human beings after His image and likeness (Genesis 1:26-27).
The great diversity of the animal kingdom demonstrates God’s creativity, but one thing all animals have in common is that they were not created in God’s image and likeness. The main distinction that separates humans from the animal kingdom is the mental and spiritual capabilities of the human mind. To learn more about the reason for these capabilities, read “Spirit in Man: What Is It?”
Mankind was created to be the peak of God’s physical creation—a little lower (or for a little while lower) than the angels (Psalm 8:5; Hebrews 2:7). God is not yet done with His creation, but is currently in the process of elevating human beings to a place in His family (Hebrews 2:10; 1 John 3:2). For more about the plan of God and humanity’s role in it, read “God’s Plan.”
Though the specifics of God’s plan are revealed throughout the Bible, many details about it are introduced in the opening chapters of the book of Genesis.The Sabbath reminder
After God finished creating mankind, the next thing He did was to institute the Sabbath as a day of rest (Genesis 2:2-3). Right after spending six days refashioning the earth and creating life upon it, God took one more day to create an institution that sets aside time every week so people can have a relationship with Him.
The Sabbath is not just a day of relaxation. The Sabbath is a time when we can reflect on our Creator and the wonderful world that He has created for us. While the Sabbath does point back to creation (Exodus 20:8-11), its importance goes beyond those original seven days. The Sabbath also points to the very Kingdom of God and the spiritual rest that His government will give us (Hebrews 4).
The marriage relationship
On the sixth day, God finished His creation of man by creating the institution of marriage. Genesis reveals that marriage was designed to be a uniquely close union between a man and a woman. A married couple was to become so close that God described the relationship as becoming “one flesh” (Genesis 2:24). But the rest of the Bible reveals that this union represents far more!
God uses marriage to teach about the relationship He has with His people. This important lesson is explained in Ephesians 5:22-33. We encourage you to read it and also to read our material on marriage.
The key point is that God wants a deep relationship with His Church—the body of people He is working with. For more on the relationship that your Creator wants with you, read “Relationship With God.”
What will you do now?
God’s creation is more than the beginning of the world; it’s a story that points us to God and His fantastic plan. Just within the creation account we see hints of:
- Man’s potential to be born into God’s family.
- The Kingdom of God.
- The relationship God wants with human beings.
The book of Genesis is just the beginning! The rest of the Bible fills in the amazing details of God’s plan. Read it!