15# God's Name, Perspective and Relationship


This is the history of the heavens and the earth when
they were created, in the day that the Lord God made
the earth and the heavens,
before any plant of the field was in the earth and before any
herb of the field had grown, For the Lord God had not caused
it to rain on the earth, and there was no man to till the ground;
but a mist went up from the earth and watered the ground.
Genesis 2:4-6

In chapter two of Genesis God moves from a technical description of what was created and how He created it in chapter one to the narrative of creation that relates directly to His personal relationship with humanity. In God's original act of creation and the days of God’s creative light described in chapter 1 we are told that God was the creator. Beginning In chapter two verse 4 we are told that the Lord God is the creator and throughout chapters 2 and 3 it is the Lord God that is in action. The subtle difference in meaning implied by the use in the original language of “God (Elohim)” and the “Lord God (Yahweh-Elohim)” may seem like a small distinction but it makes a vast difference in the understanding of what is happening in the first three chapters of Genesis. 

The usage of God implies the creator of everything. The usage of the Lord God implies a relationship beyond that of just the creator but of a personal relationship. In chapter one we have the technical description of the history of all of creation but chapter two begins the narration of God’s specific relationship with humanity. It is much like chapter one gives us a distant satellite picture of all of the creation from beginning to end and chapter two zooms in on the details of this satellite view contained in day 6 that were not visible from chapter one's wide and all-inclusive perspective. Chapter two begins the narration of the history of The Lord God’s personal relationship with human beings and every part of the Bible that follows reveals something of that relationship.     

 In verse 4 of chapter 2 the first clause speaks of “the heavens and the earth” and pertains to the general history of God’s creation just as in verse 1 of chapter 1. This indicates to us that what follows is part of that original description of the days of creation of chapter 1. The phrase in the second clause “the earth and the heavens” speaks of the earth and the physical heavens visible from the earth. This switch in phraseology and perspective tells us that what follows is focused on humanity and its perspective of existence on the earth. What will be described here is the larger and more detailed generations or history of humanity in creation and not the limited description of the creation of Man that we find in chapter one.

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