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Matthew Henry

Matthew Henry's Complete Commentary - Genesis 1:1-2

In these verses we have the work of creation in its epitome and in its embryo. I. In its epitome, Gen. 1:1; where we find, to our comfort, the first article of our creed, that God the Father Almighty is the Maker of heaven and earth, and as such we believe in him. 1. Observe, in this verse, four things:? (1.) The effect produced?the heaven and the earth, that is, the world, including the whole frame and furniture of the universe, the world and all things therein, Acts 17:24. The world is a... read more

John Gill

John Gills Exposition of the Bible Commentary - Genesis 1:2

And the earth was without form, and void ,.... It was not in the form it now is, otherwise it must have a form, as all matter has; it was a fluid matter, the watery parts were not separated from the earthy ones; it was not put into the form of a terraqueous globe it is now, the sea apart, and the earth by itself, but were mixed and blended together; it was, as both the Targums of Jonathan and Jerusalem paraphrase it, a waste and desert, empty and destitute of both men and beasts; and it may... read more

Adam Clarke

Adam Clarke's Commentary on the Bible - Genesis 1:2

The earth was without form and void - The original term תהו tohu and בהו bohu , which we translate without form and void, are of uncertain etymology; but in this place, and wherever else they are used, they convey the idea of confusion and disorder. From these terms it is probable that the ancient Syrians and Egyptians borrowed their gods, Theuth and Bau, and the Greeks their Chaos. God seems at first to have created the elementary principles of all things; and this formed the grand... read more

John Calvin

John Calvin's Commentary on the Bible - Genesis 1:2

Verse 2 2.And the earth was without form and void. I shall not be very solicitous about the exposition of these two epithets, תוהו, (tohu,) and בוהו, (bohu.) The Hebrews use them when they designate anything empty and confused, or vain, and nothing worth. Undoubtedly Moses placed them both in opposition to all those created objects which pertain to the form, the ornament and the perfection of the world. Were we now to take away, I say, from the earth all that God added after the time here... read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Genesis 1:1-2

II. As to the precise manner in which it was imparted to its author, THE VISION THEORY of Kurtz, though declared by Kalisch to be "a complicated tissue of conjectures and assumptions utterly destitute of every , the faintest and remotest , Biblical foundation ," is perhaps, with certain modifications, the best. Rejecting the idea of a series of creative tableaux without any solid substratum of actual fact, there is clearly nothing in the nature of the case to discredit the... read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Genesis 1:2

And the earth . Clearly the earth referred to in the preceding verse, the present terrestrial globe with its atmospheric firmament, and not simply "the land" as opposed to "the skies" (Murphy); certainly not "the heavens" of Genesis 1:1 as well as the earth (Delitzsch); and least of all "a section of the dry land in Central Asia" (Buckland, Pye Smith). It is a sound principle of exegesis that a word shall retain the meaning it at first possesses till either intimation is made by the writer... read more

Spence, H. D. M., etc.

The Pulpit Commentary - Genesis 1:2

Chaos an emblem of the unrenewed soul. I. WITHOUT ORDER : existing in a state of spiritual ruin, and requiting a special process of rearrangement to evolve symmetry and beauty from its confusion ( 2 Corinthians 5:16 ). II. WITHOUT LIFE : being dead in trespasses and sins ( Ephesians 2:1 ); absolutely "void" in the sense of being untenanted by lofty thoughts, pure emotions, holy volitions, spiritual imaginations, such as are the inmates of sinless and, in great part also, of... read more

Albert Barnes

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible - Genesis 1:2

- II. The Landהיה hāyah, “be.” It is to be noted, however, that the word has three meanings, two of which now scarcely belong to our English “be.”1. “Be, as an event, start into being, begin to be, come to pass.” This may be understood of a thing beginning to be, אור יהי yehiy 'ôr, “be light” Genesis 1:3; or of an event taking place, ימים מקץ ויהי vayehı̂y mı̂qēts yāmı̂ym, “and it came to pass from the end of days.”2. “Be,” as a change of state, “become.” This is applied to what had a... read more

Joseph Benson

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments - Genesis 1:2

Genesis 1:2. The earth When first called into existence, was without form and void: confusion and emptiness, as the same original words are rendered, Isaiah 34:11. It was without order, beauty, or even use, in its present state, and was surrounded on all sides with thick darkness, through the gloom of which there was not one ray of light to penetrate not even so much as to render the darkness visible. The Spirit of God moved, &c. To cherish, quicken, and dispose them to the... read more

Donald C. Fleming

Bridgeway Bible Commentary - Genesis 1:1-31

THE STORY OF CREATIONThe Bible and scienceModern science has revealed so much about the wonders and the size of the physical universe that human beings may seem almost to be nothing. The Bible takes a different view. Human beings are its main concern, for they alone are made in God’s image. The story of creation is but an introduction to the story of God’s dealings with the human race. The Bible demonstrates this order of importance from the outset by fitting the story of creation into a mere... read more

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