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Creation Ex Nihilo in Genesis

Posted in Uncategorized by victorchristensen on July 24, 2009

Creation Ex Nihilo

The debate over the creation account in Genesis has been around for centuries. As far back as New Testament times Hellenistic Jews such as Philo engaged the orthodox Rabbi’s in a spirited debated over the origins of life. Against this historical background we need to recognize that the tension between old earth theories and creation ex nihilo was not unknown to the biblical writers and they were aware of the problem and responded to it.

The biblical testimony states unequivocally that when God created the earth, as recorded in Genesis 1, He did not make use of pre-existing matter but spoke the word and the created order came instantly into existence.

Let all the earth fear the Lord;
Let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of Him.
For He spoke and it was done;
He commanded, and it stood fast.”(Palms 33:8-9)

The language of this testimony is freight with the imagery of instantaneous creation which does not allow for the theory of theistic evolution that life forms evolving over billions of years. Neither can it accommodate any misconceived two-stage creation theory which proposes the earth was created in stages from pre-existing matter.

“Whatever may be the nature of the traditions in Genesis and however strong may be the presumption that they suggest the existence of an original substance which was reshaped in accordance with the Deity’s purposes, it is clear that the Prophets and many of the Psalms accept without reservation the doctrine of creation from nothing by the will of a supermundane personal God. (Ps. xxxiii. 6-9, cii. 26, cxxi. 2; Jer. x. 12; Isa. xlii. 5, xlv. 7-9): ‘By the word of the Lord were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth.’ To such a degree has this found acceptance as the doctrine of the Synagogue that God has come to be designated as ‘He who spake and the world sprang into existence’” (Jewish Encyclopaedia, http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/view.jsp?artid=853&letter=C)

God calling into existence things out of nothing not only marks the beginning of existence for the created order but the principle of creation from nothing is the foundation upon which all creation continues to exist.

Continuous immediate creation is God special signature, the manifest proof of His divinity. Nothing created has an autonomous existence; Scripture says; “in Him we live and move and exist.” (Acts 17:28) God not only created all things merely by calling them into existence but everything that exists does exist for the one and only reason that God continually wills it to exist. Nothing created has its own inherent and independent life force. If God did not will it otherwise the entire universe would instantly dissolve into miniscule particles of nothingness.

Paul said, “for us there is one God … for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ … through whom we exist.” (1 Corinthians 8:6) Instantaneous creation does not end because a thing exists; it remains for all time the reason why it exists. We exist now on account of a continuous creative force known as creation ex nihilo.

The creation of light in Genesis 1:3 provides indisputable proof creation ex nihilo is active in Genesis 1.

“God said, ‘Let there be light,’ and there was light.” (Genesis 1:3) One Hebrew/English translation reads, “’There shall be light,’ and light came into existence.The light in Genesis 1:3 existed in the absence of the sun, “light” was created out of nothing (ex nihilo) simply because God said “let there be” and there was light.

Revered Jewish scholar Ibn Ezra (1089–1164) in a reference to Genesis 1:2, “Let there be light”, says, “The sun was not yet ….” (Ezra, I., Commentary on the Pentateuch, Genesis (Bereshit), translated and annotated by Strickman H.N. and Silver A.M., Menorah Publishing Co., New York, USA, p. 33, 1999)

When God said let there be “light” in an instant light came from nowhere without any visible cause. There was “light” for no other reason than God saying “let there be light.” Therefore, Genesis 1:3 provides indisputable proof the principle of creation from nothing was the operative force behind God’s creative activity in Genesis 1

According to Henry Morris when God created light He energized the newly created planet by setting “the electromagnetic forces into operation in effect completed the energizing of the physical cosmos. All the types of force and energy which interact in the universe involve only electromagnetic, gravitational, and nuclear forces; and all these had now been activated.” (Henry Morris, The Genesis Record Baker Book House1976, p56)

Of all teachings in the Bible creation ex nihilo is God’s badge of identity because it separates Him from other pretended deities and tells us who He is. Creation ex nihilo (Yesh Meayin) is not a statement about what God does; it is a statement about who He is.  Those who reject creation ex nihilo reject the biblical concept of God.

All the miracles performed by Jesus and His disciples were based upon the principle of creation ex nihilo. The giving of sight to a man who was “born blind” (John 9:2) was a miraculous demonstration of creation ex nihilo. The miracle of the dead coming back to life (John 14:33) was nothing less than creation ex nihilo.

In Romans 4:17 Paul writes, “God … calls into existence the things that do not exist.” Given Judaism’s historical commitment to creation ex nihilo the conceptual framework for Paul’s statement on origins was whether deity remodelled primordial matter into new forms (Aristotle) or whether the God created everything ex nihilo. Since in the first century the eternity of matter and creation from nothing were the only alternatives in contention Paul’s claim that “God … calls into existence the things that do not exist” is open to only one interpretation.

Leon Morris interprets Paul in the only way a contextual treatment of the Romans 4:17 allows; “Paul is speaking of God as creating something out of nothing ….” (Leon Morris, The Epistle to the Romans, (IVP, 1988) p.209) 

In Hebrews 4:3 there is a close temporal link between the time when the “foundations” of the world were laid and when the work of creation was completed. “His works were finished from the foundations of the world.”

If God “finished” His work of creation at the same time He laid “the foundations of the world”, which appears to be the obvious meaning of the text, Hebrews 4:3 can be taken as an endorsement of creation ex nihilo.

At any rate creation ex nihilo is biblical teaching. “For He spoke, and it came to be; He commanded, and it stood firm.” “God … calls into existence the things that do not exist.” “The worlds were prepared by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things which are visible.”(Psalms 33:9, Romans 4:17, Hebrews 11:3)

If “what is seen was not made out of things which are visible” and if “God … calls into existence the things that do not exist” (Hebrews 11:3, Romans 4:17) the concept of creation from nothing becomes a mandatory belief.

“Greek speculation about the formation of the ordered world out of formless matter had influenced Jewish thinkers like Philo and the author of the book of Wisdom, the writer to the Hebrews is more biblical in his reasoning and affirms the doctrine of creatio ex nihilo, a doctrine uncongenial to Greek thought. The faith by which he accepts it is faith in the divine revelation; the first chapter of Genesis is probably uppermost in his mind…” (F.F. Bruce, The Epistle to the Hebrews, NICNT, (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1990), pp.279-280)

Scripture testifies that the Creator not only “made the world” but also He “upholds all things by the word of His power.” (Hebrews 1:2-3) Since creation is the basis of worship we should hold to the highest interpretation of it.

Creation Ex Nihilo in Jewish Sources

According to Maren Niehoff rabbinic sources demonstrate that Gamaliel, who is identified in Acts 2:3 as Paul’s religious instructor, taught that “the abyss (Genesis 1:2) was created by God from nothing.” On the basis of his research Niehoff writes, “Rabban Gamaliel defends a creatio ex nihilo theology as if this doctrine were self-evident.” (Maren Niehoff, Creatio ex Nihilo Theology in Genesis in the Light of Christian Exegesis. p.47)

The school of Shammai taught the heavens were created before the earth, the school of Hillel taught the earth was created before the heavens.1 Whereas there were differences in rabbinic circles there was no disagreement on creation ex nihilo. It is certain if Gamaliel believed in creation ex nihilo he also taught it to Paul. (1Creation and Cosmogony in the Bible, http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/judaica/ejud_0002_0005_0_04699.html)

Two non canonical books of Jewish origin written 170 years apart that span the apostolic period provide a timeframe which links Jewish orthodoxy to the doctrine of creation ex nihilo. 2 Maccabees (124 BC) and 2 Enoch written sometime in the latter half of the first century both endorse the doctrine of creation ex nihilo.

“Observe heaven and earth, consider all that is in them, and acknowledge that God made them out of what did not exist, and that mankind comes into being in the same way.” “Before anything existed at all, from the very beginning, whatever exists I created from the non-existent.” (2 Maccabees 7:27-29, 2 Enoch 24:2)

Moses Maimonides (1300 A.D) described in Jewish circles as the “second Moses” was also a staunch defender of fiat creation or God calling things into existence from nothing. “God brought everything outside of Himself into existence after complete and absolute nonexistence.” (Cited, Herbert A Davidson, Moses Maimonides, Oxford University Press, 2005, p.365, See also, The Guide of the Perplexed (Vol. 2, chap. 25)

We are told, “Maimonides’ arguments for creation ex nihilo are a centerpiece of The Guide of the Perplexed.” (Andrew Gluck, Hofstra University, Research Article Maimonides’ Arguments for Creation Ex Nihilo in the Guide of the Perplexed)

In classic Hellenistic teaching there is no creation ex nihilo only a reorganizing of formless pre-existing matter.

“According to the Greeks, the Maker worked with eternal matter existing outside himself.”1 However, it is not possible to match the language of Romans 4:17 and Hebrews 11:3, which speak of creation reacting spontaneously to the spoken word of God to the concept that the earth was created in separate stages over a period of billions of years.  (1Plato and the Platonists, http://www.ritmanlibrary.nl/c/p/exh/cre/cre_pla_01.html)

Two Stage Creation

According to some the earth and its cosmic environment (sun and moon) were created in a state of sterile inactivity “billions of years” ago and not in a limited six-day time frame merely thousand of years ago. The theory is that the earth remained in a dormant state similar to the moon, lifeless and inert, for billions of years and then at a point some thousand of years ago God renovated the surface of planet earth and created life on it.

According to this two stage creation thesis the sun and the moon were also created billions of years ago but when God renovated the surface of the earth the sun was activated and, with the moon, assigned a particular function.

The working premise of this thesis is the belief the ancient Hebrews shared the same conceptual parameters and high-tech cosmology as evolutionary scientists and this opinion is then arbitrarily inserted into the Genesis text.

“Gen. 2 seems to point toward a two-stage creation for this earth. … [T]he text of Gen 1:1 does not indicate how long before creation week the ‘raw materials’ of earth were created: Maybe billions of years, maybe more or less. … the sun and moon were already in existence before the fourth day and thus could have been created ‘in the beginning’ (before Creation week, v. 1).” (Richard Davidson, A Biblical Theology of Creation pp 24, 38, See also his, The Biblical Account of Origins presented at the International Faith and Science Conference, Ogden, August 25, 2002 pp.21, 24)

This opinion is not being challenged here because it is contrary to established beliefs but because it is based on a superficial interpretation of the Hebrew text and because it is an attempt to arbitrarily impose a contemporary mindset on an historical context whose word meanings and conceptual parameters have been totally ignored.

The language of Scripture only allows for the idea that “earth and heaven” were created in a short timeframe. “This is the account of … the day that the Lord God made earth and heaven.” (Genesis 2:4 NASB) The intention behind the word “day” can only refer to creative acts covering a short period not “billions” of years.

“The action involved with the word (bara) is the first activity of biblical history. It is used exclusively to refer to God’s creative work; it refers to creating things ex nihilo, or out of nothing.” (The Complete Biblical Library, The Old Testament, Hebrew-English Dictionary, World Library Press (Springfield, Mo., U.S.A) p.578)

A straightforward reading of Moses recorded history of origins in Genesis 1 clearly teaches that God created the whole earth and its solar system, specifically the sun and the moon, out on nothing within a literal six-day time frame. If there was any reason to doubt the matter Exodus 20:11 presents this proposition in an exact, unequivocal and irreducible format. “In six days the Lord made heaven and earth and all that is in them.” (ESV)

In its context Exodus 20:11 is not presented as Moses expressing private opinion but is a verbatim account of God Himself speaking and Moses repeating to the people the exact words he heard God speak. Since it is God speaking the question arises, in the record provided in Genesis 1 did God simply renovate the surface of a sterile planet billions of years old or was the earth, sun and moon spontaneously created entirely out of nothing?

The correct answer to this question is; “In six days the Lord made heaven and earth and all that is in them.” Just how this was accomplished we are told; “[God] spoke, and it was done” instantaneously. (Palms 33:9) If we accept scripture according to its plain meaning creation was accomplished instantaneously from nothing.

“The NT seems to favor the derivation of matter from nonexistent … So the best exegesis interprets Heb. 11:3.” (The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, Vol 1, p. 801, Eerdmans, Grand Rapids, MI, 1989)

“The words in Heb. 11:3 ‘what is seen was made out of things which do not appear’, taken with Gn. 1:1, ‘in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth’, indicate that the worlds were not made of pre-existent material, but out of nothing by the divine Word, in the sense that prior to the divine creative fiat there was no other kind of existence. This creatio ex nihilo has important theological implications, for among other things it precludes the idea that matter is eternal. …”   (The New Bible Dictionary, IVP, Tyndale House IL p. 245)

“Thus, our finding that the word Éeres (earth) refers primarily to the dry surface of our planet and to its life does not allow us to conclude that Genesis 1 portrays a second stage of a two-stage creation, first the matter of the planet, then the earth, with a temporal interval in between. It does allow a distinction of perspective between our world system, heaven and earth, and the earth as dry land with its life and territories, but any temporal distinction between them we will have to introduce on our own initiative, without the help of the Bible.” (Niels-Erik Andreasen, The Word Earth in Genesis 1:1 http://www.grisda.org/origins/08013.htm)

“Whatever may be the nature of the traditions in Genesis and however strong may be the presumption that they suggest the existence of an original substance which was reshaped in accordance with the Deity’s purposes, it is clear that the Prophets and many of the Psalms accept without reservation the doctrine of creation from nothing by the will of a supermundane personal God.” (Jewish Encyclopaedia, http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/view.jsp?artid=853&letter=C)

“Ver. 2 is what is called a “circumstantial clause,” expressing the circumstances concomitant to the principal statement. As for the particular kind of circumstantial clause which we have here, “the noun-clause connected by waw copulative to a verbal-clause, or its equivalent, always describes a state contemporaneous with the principal action” (Gesenius-Kautzsch, Hebrew Grammar, Eng. tr., §141 e). Such a clause need not have the verb “to be” expressed, but sometimes it has, as here (hayethah); another instance is Jonah iii, 3b: we-Ninweh hayethah it gedolah l’Elohim (lit., “and Nineveh was a city great to God”). This clause is obviously not one of a succession of incidents; it describes the circumstances under which the principal action—Jonah’s rising and going to Nineveh—took place. It is grammatically on all fours with Gen, i, 2, and if Gen. i, 2, means that the earth became waste and emptiness after God created it, then Jonah iii, 3b, should mean that Nineveh became an exceeding great city after Jonah went to it.” (F.F. Bruce, And the Earth was Without Form and Void,’ An Enquiry into the Exact Meaning of Genesis 1, 2, Bruce http://www.biblicalstudies.org.uk/pdf/jtvi/without-form_bruce.pdf)

Whether it is true or not that the following texts refer to function and not an empirical condition they still rule out the possibility that the earth, sun and the moon remained in a dysfunctional condition for “billions of years.”

“For thus says the Lord, who created the heavens He is the God who formed the earth and made it, He established it and did not create it a waste place, but formed it to be inhabited.” “For thus says the Lord, who created the heavens He is God! … He did not create it empty” (Isaiah 45:18 NASB, Isaiah 45:18 ESV)

The statement God “did not create it a waste place, but formed it to be inhabited” does not allow for a temporal gap of billions of years but only for the idea “the earth was empty” for a brief moment on day one of creation.

“In keeping with Exodus 20:11 … day one [of the six day creation] actually begins in verse one, with the creation of the watery void called ‘Earth’.” (Brad T. Bromling, The Genesis Account of Creation vs. Theistic Evolution http://www.mountainretreatorg.net/apologetics/genesis_account_of_creation.shtml)

Genesis 1:2 says the earth was covered with “water” four days before the actual creation of the sun.

However, according to the laws of physics without heat from the sun the earth could not have been covered with “water” but would have been a frozen sphere of rock hard ice. The temperature in space is 2.7 Kelvin which is minus 270 degrees Celsius, or minus 455 Fahrenheit. For the surface of earth to in remain in a continuous watery state for “billions of years” would require a continuous miracle that also lasted for many billions of years.

The idea that the laws of physics were suspended for “billions of years” only in reference to the liquid surface on the earth, and to nothing else in the universe, may be called many things but clear thinking is not one of them.

The Beginning

According to Jesus’ testimony, and He was doing the creating, the earth and humanity came into existence at the same historical moment. “At the beginning of creation God (Jesus) made them male and female.” (Mark 10:6)

If Jesus created Adam and Eve at “the beginning of creation”, and if the Bible contains only one account of “the beginning of creation”, (Genesis 1:1) it is axiomatic Genesis 1:1 must be “the beginning” Jesus is referring to.

Merrill Unger rightly says the “beginning” in Genesis 1:1 refers to “the Creation of the universe as man knows it, not the beginning of everything, and verses 1-2 would provide the introduction to it.” (Merrill Unger, Unger’s Commentary on the Old Testament. 2 Vols. Chicago: Moody Press, 1981, 1:5 italics his)

According to its Hebrew etymology the “beginning” in Genesis 1:1 refers to the first part of an uninterrupted and continuous process and not to a two-stage creation event that was on, off, and on again over billions of years.

The Bible has its own internal commentary which tells us the “beginning” in Genesis 1 lasted for six consecutive days. God has arranged it so that it is not easy to misunderstand what the Bible teaches about creation.

(1) “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” (Genesis 1:1)

(2)   “For in six days God created the heavens and the earth.” (Exodus 20:11)

“As to [the claim] that the ‘beginning’ means an extended period of time … in normal use the Hebrew word simply cannot bear such a ‘timeless’ interpretation. … When one looks at how the word [bereshit] is used in Jeremiah, one discovers that it means simply ‘at the start’. This points i.e., at the start of Jehoiakim’s reign, etc to a definite time and place, and not to an indefinite period which stretched out over millennia! … The beginning point of a line is just that, a point. Normal usage should prevail when one interprets a word.” (James West, Genesis Unbound: A Provocative New Look at the Creation Account http://www.theology.edu/journal/bookreviews/unbound.htm

“It [the beginning] signifies primarily the first (or best) part of a thing. From this it easily glides into a temporal sense as the first stage of a process or series of events: Deut. 11:12 (of the year); Job 8:7 (a man’s life), and 40:19; Isaiah 46:10 (starting point of a series), etc. It is of more consequence to observe that at no period of the language does the temporal sense go beyond the definition already given, viz., the first stage of a process, either explicitly indicated or clearly implied.” (John Skinner, A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on Genesis, International Critical Commentary, Clark, Edinburgh, 1951, p.12, italic his)

The Hebrews had no concept of “empty” time and for them the “beginning” of something is always organically linked by a process of dynamic function and continuity of action to the thing that it is the beginning of.

“The distinguishing feature of Hebrew verb forms is the expression of continuity of an action rather than distinguishing between past, present, or future.” (Ole J. Thienhaus, Jewish Time, http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0411/is_4_48/ai_59120280/)

The Hebrews did not think of “time” as space which is filled with events, past, present and future. What Genesis 1:1 describes as the “beginning” is an epoch made up of a series of connected events that by their intrinsic nature collectively constitute what the “beginning” actually is. And the entire creation epoch is the “beginning.”

The Heavens

In the ancient Hebrew vocabulary “the heavens” represented the visible heavens and includes the “heavens” in which the “birds fly” (Genesis 1:20) and “the heavens” in which the sun and the moon are located as one “heaven.” (Genesis 1:15) Within this non scientific framework of visual phenomena, in which the senses determine reality, there is no inner and outer space so that the “sky” and “the heavens” is the same thing.

The “heavens” referred to in Genesis 1:1 and expanded on in other verses begin at tree top level and extend upward into the Earth’s solar system as it says, “let birds fly above the earth in the open expanse of the heavens.”1 “Let them (sun and moon) be for lights in the expanse of the heavens2 (1Genesis 1:20, 2Genesis 1:15)

In Genesis 1:8 we are told, “And God called the firmament heaven.” Since the “firmament” is identified as “heaven” this allows us to read verse 6 and 7 as follows: “And God said, Let there be a (heaven) in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. And God made (heaven), and divided the waters which were under (heaven) from the waters which were above (heaven) and it was so.” (Genesis 1:6-7)

According to this description there are waters above the heavens as well as below the heavens. This makes it clear that whatever the term “heaven” referred to in Genesis 1:1 might mean at least a part of “heaven” is organically linked to the earth and constitutes the earth’s own global integrity and atmospheric identity.

In Genesis 1 “heaven and earth” represent a single unit which has both a terrestrial and a celestial realm. The sun and the moon in “heaven” are functioning axillaries that belong to the earth created for the purpose to “give light upon the earth.” (v.16) In holistic terms, therefore, the “two great lights” in the “heavens” are not something separate from the earth but with the earth itself they serve to make a complete and fully functional earth.

In Psalm 19:6 “heaven” is identified as a sphere with an “end” and “circuit” in which the sun is located. It rises at one end of the heavens and makes its circuit to the other; nothing is hidden from its heat.” (NIV) Psalm 148:4 (NASB) speaks of “the waters that are above the heavens.” The Hebrews held to a non scientific cosmology which was based purely on sight in which the “heavens” are a vertical and identifiable visible location.

When the Hebrews thought of God in “heaven” they were not thinking of an exact location but of a sphere somewhere above the clouds. Heaven is where God is but where that is exactly is completely unknown. The “heavens” in Genesis 1:1 is not a reference to the entire universe but simply to the visible sky/heavens.

According to Genesis 1:8 God created “heaven” on the second day, meaning that the barren earth was created before “heaven.” Genesis 1:8 says, “And God called the expanse heaven. And there was evening and there was morning, the second day.” Genesis 2:4 which speaks of “the day that the Lord God made the earth and the heavens” has the exact same order and also places the creation of the “earth” before the creation of “heaven.”

Since Genesis 1:1-8 and Genesis 2:4 place the creation of the earth before the “heavens” this shows that the “heavens” in Genesis have a limited meaning and is not a reference to the entire universe. This limited concept of the “heavens” allows us to take Exodus 20:11 “in six days the Lord made heaven and earth” as literal reading.

Some claim the reference to the “heavens” in Genesis 1:1 refers to the entire universe. Maybe not.

In 2 Samuel 18:9 we find Absalom riding a mule. He rides under an oak tree and gets his hair tangled in the branches. The mule keeps going while Absalom finds himself, according to the Hebrew, “lifted up between the heavens [hashamayim] and the earth [haerets].” Is Scripture saying Absalom was suspended somewhere between planet earth and the outer regions of the Galaxy? If the reference to the “heavens” in 2 Samuel 18:9 does not take in the entire universe why the demand to interpret Genesis 1:1 as a reference to the entire universe?

The ancient Hebrew concept of “the heavens” only includes that which impacts on the human experience and does not include modern scientific concepts of cosmology. (See Jacques B. Doukhan, Hebrew for Theologians: A Textbook for the Study of Biblical Hebrew in Relation to Hebrew Thinking, Lanham, 1993 p.96)

The testimonies of Scripture stayed within the conceptual boundaries of those to whom they were given.  There are numerous texts which show the “heavens” referred to in Genesis 1 are limited to the parameters of earthly experience. In the context of the Torah the “heavens” are defined by subjective description based on sight and daily encounter. The ancient Hebrews had no concept of the universe and had nothing to say about it.

Summary

Creation ex nihilo is a clear biblical teaching. “For He spoke, and it came to be; He commanded, and it stood firm.” “God … calls into existence the things that do not exist.” “The worlds were prepared by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things which are visible.”(Psalms 33:9, Romans 4:17, Hebrews 11:3)

The two-stage creation theory ignores the divine testimony in Exodus 20:11 “in six days the Lord made heaven and earth.” It contradicts the biblical testimony that God “did not create it [the earth] a waste place, but formed it to be inhabited.” (Isaiah 45:18) It rejects Jesus’ testimony, “at the beginning of creation God made them male and female” (Mark 10:6) which is a clear reference to the fact Adam Eve were created in the same “beginning” referred to in Genesis 1:1. The two-stage creation theory represents the high water mark of unbelief and derives its conceptual parameters from heretical teachings and evolutionary science and nothing from the Bible.

The two-stage creation theory also demonstrates a complete ignorance of the Hebrew concept of time. Any gap theory between a “beginning” that occurred billions of years ago and a later extension of that “beginning” derives its conceptual parameters from Greek calculations of chronological time alien to biblical concepts.

We need to understand that the warnings spelled out in Revelation 22:18-19 applies to the entire corpus of sacred Scripture. Of all the fatal practices that we are exposed to tampering with Scripture is top of the list.

I warn everyone who hears the words of … this book: If anyone adds anything to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book. And if anyone takes words away from this book … God will take away from him his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book.” (Revelation 22:18-19)

Let all the earth fear the Lord;
Let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of Him.
For He spoke and it was done;
He commanded, and it stood fast.”(Palms 33:8-9)

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