The Bible, Genesis and Geology Logo

Rightly-Dividing the Words of Truth

Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth

It has been the purpose of this study to affirm the Holy Bible as the final authority on all questions of natural history and spiritual truth. We have chosen to use the literal wording of the old King James Authorized Version of the Bible (based on the original translation work of 1611 and revised in 1769), because it predates today's denominational Christian movements. Thus, it is a translation free from contamination by modern "Christian Scholarship" and textual bias. It is also a translation free of scientific contamination because it predates all works of the founding fathers of the Geological sciences (Nicholas Steno 1638-1686, James Hutton 1726-1797, Charles Lyell 1797-1875, and William Smith 1769-1839) and predates the publication of Darwin's 'On the Origin of Species' by over 200 years. If the written words of the English language Bible of 1611 were truth back in 1611 (just over 400 years ago), then those same written words will still be truth in the English language today. It is from this standard of written authority that the material on this site is presented and defended.

Although the King James Version of the Holy Scriptures is just one of many "translations" of the Scriptures, it is a self-interpreting whole with its own internal set of terminology and concepts. Additional insight into the choice of English wording can be gained from reviewing the Hebrew and Greek definitions, and I recommend doing so. Understanding of it all is provided by the Holy Spirit of Truth.

When studying God's Scriptures it is important to keep these points in mind:

1. The Scriptures are self-interpreting when correctly translated.
2. Every single word, tense, and phrase is structured to convey PRECISE meaning.
3. Things that are different are NOT the same.
4. Things that are the same ARE the same.
5. There are NO real contradictions in the Scriptures. (see: John 10:35) For every apparent contradiction there is a Scriptural resolution.
6. The Scriptures cannot be broken.

In this world, when man communicates with his fellow man, lawyers draw up contracts which use precise word meanings. Legislatures draft laws and regulations on the same principles as do diplomats who must convey their nations' positions with concisely worded documents that effectively communicate across language and cultural differences. The use of a particular word, which conveys a particular nuance of meaning, can speak volumes. Words are parsed closely by the recipients for determination of intent and subtly of meaning. Should we not therefore expect the same principle and understanding in respecting and interpreting what God has to say to man in all matters? Of course!

In this final main chapter we are going to review some of the previous topics discussed and amplify on their interpretation. We will also discuss The Rule of First Mention and how to apply it (Simply stated, find out the first time a word is used, and invariably the context will explain its meaning).

With respect to the doctrine that the seven days of Genesis are describing a regeneration of the heavens and Earth, replacing a previous world destroyed by God, there are several comparisons of Scripture-with-Scripture that suggest this doctrine:

Compare: "the generations of Adam" (Genesis 5:1) with "the generations of the heaven and the earth" (Genesis 2:4)

In Genesis 5:1-5 the Bible accounts the "generations of Adam," but the genealogy begins with Seth and makes NO MENTION of Cain and Abel. This is in spite of the fact that Cain and Abel were previously mentioned. Why? It is because it denotes a new beginning for the messianic line from Adam to Christ. The rebellion of Cain "who was of that wicked one" (1 John 3:12) and the murder of his brother, Abel, destroyed the first established order of things. Seth was the appointed replacement seed (Genesis 4:25). The importance of this will be explained shortly when we discuss the "Rule of First Mention" of Bible interpretation.

We're going to repeat some previous textual quotes given throughout the study to re-enforce the importance of Rightly-Dividing the Holy Bible. Compare these two verses:

"In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth."
(Genesis 1:1 KJV)

"Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them."
(Genesis 2:1 KJV)

Notice the singular tense of the word heaven in the first verse and the plural rendering of the word in the second verse. In both instances the word is from the same, "dual" tense Hebrew word. For that reason critics of the AV say it is a mistranslation and thus render the word in Genesis 1:1 as plural in other contemporary English translations.

But remember: Things that are different are not the same, and by this one letter difference in rendering the word as singular in Genesis 1:1 and plural in Genesis 2:1 of the King James Version the Spirit is directing your attention to something very important; a subtle difference in the meaning of the term and its context. Why? To make you search for the significance of that subtle difference because it leads to more perfect understanding of the rest of the Bible in our own language (English). And this difference supports the interpretive import of what we just compared between Genesis 5:1 and Genesis 2:4 and between Cain and Seth. It fits the intent of meaning.

By the way, that minor difference of an "s" or no "s" at the end of the word "heaven" in Genesis 1:1 is also directly connected to interpretation of other key concepts in passages including Genesis 1:10, Isaiah 65:17 and Revelation 21:1, and plays a major part in understanding the term "third heaven" that the Apostle Paul wrote about in 2 Corinthians 12:2.

Compare these verses:

"And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth."
(Genesis 1:28 KJV)

"And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth."
(Genesis 1:22 KJV)

"And God blessed Noah and his sons, and said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth."
(Genesis 9:1 KJV)

The word "replenish" in 1:28 and the word "fill" in 1:22 are also from the same Hebrew word as is the word "replenish" in Genesis 9:1. Critics of the AV text are quick to point out that this Hebrew word 'male' can have different meanings, such as to "fill" something for the first time or to fill up something again. They are correct in pointing that out, but they are incorrect in calling it an unfortunate translation and then insisting it should also be changed to "fill" in Genesis 1:22 and Genesis 9:1. The Spirit moved the translators of the AV1611 Bible to make this particular nuance of distinction, and for good reason. When you compare the word "replenish" as spoken in Genesis 1:28 with the meaning of its rendering in Genesis 9:1 concerning Noah, we begin to see that the Spirit is saying something very important. Specifically, that as Noah and his family were told to go forth from the Ark and repopulate a new world because the former one and all its population had been destroyed, God was also telling Adam something very similar; specifically, to repopulate a new world after the former one and its inhabitants had been destroyed.


"And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters." 
(Genesis 1:2 KJV)

"I beheld the earth, and, lo, it was without form, and void; and the heavens, and they had no light. I beheld the mountains, and, lo, they trembled, and all the hills moved lightly. I beheld, and, lo, there was no man, and all the birds of the heavens were fled. I beheld, and, lo, the fruitful place was a wilderness, and all the cities thereof were broken down at the presence of the LORD, and by his fierce anger."
(Jeremiah 4:23-26 KJV)  

The context of the first verse is the time in the past immediately before God says, "Let there be light" on the first day in Genesis. It was speaking of the condition of the old heaven and Earth prior to the regeneration of the seven-days of Genesis. That was the Earth's condition before it is prepared for the first Adam. The doctrinal context of the second verse is at a future time immediately after the Great Tribulation and the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ.  It speaks about the Earth's condition before it is prepared for the second Adam, the Lord Jesus Christ, and the regeneration of the heavens and Earth found in Isaiah 65:17. The common phrase "without form and void" is used in both verses, but are speaking of different regeneration (creative) events, one past and one future.

"And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven."
(1 Cor. 15:45-47)

Having previously defended the Genesis Gap Doctrine argument on the basis of these passages, let us now review them and TEST them against a commonly accepted rule of Biblical Interpretation: "The Rule of First Mention"  

This rule states that the first mention of a word in Scripture sets the tone for the use of that particular word throughout the rest of the Bible. Let us begin by examining the first and second mention of the word "generations" in the Bible:

1st Mention: "These [are] the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the LORD God made the earth and the heavens, And every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and every herb of the field before it grew: for the LORD God had not caused it to rain upon the earth, and [there was] not a man to till the ground."
(Genesis 2:4-5 KJV)

2nd Mention: "This [is] the book of the generations of Adam. In the day that God created man, in the likeness of God made he him; Male and female created he them; and blessed them, and called their name Adam, in the day when they were created. And Adam lived an hundred and thirty years, and begat [a son] in his own likeness, after his image; and called his name Seth:"
(Genesis 5:1-3 KJV)

Notice that the second mention in the Bible of the term "generations" chronicles the family line of Adam. However, this verse begins the start of Adam's family line with Seth and not with Cain or Abel. This is extremely instructive, as anyone who reads the Bible knows that Eve gave birth to Cain and Abel BEFORE Seth. So why does this particular verse of Scripture and genealogy of Adam deliberately skip over Cain and Abel? Let's look at the Bible for the answer.

"And Adam knew his wife again; and she bare a son, and called his name Seth: For God, [said she], hath appointed me another seed instead of Abel, whom Cain slew."
(Genesis 4:25 KJV)

This prior verse says that Seth was a replacement for the first seed (Abel), who was destroyed by the evil deed of his brother (Cain), but neither the one replaced (nor his brother) are mentioned in the genealogy of Genesis 5:1-3; they are skipped over. There is also a "GAP" in the "generations of Adam" from that point forward in time. Applying the "Rule of First Mention" to the first mention of the word "generations" in Genesis 2:1, we can be confident there must also be a "GAP" at the first mention. In other words, the "generations" of the "heavens and of the earth" beginning at Genesis 2:4 are a replacement for a previous heaven and Earth which, as revealed in the Genesis Gap interpretation, were eventually destroyed as a consequence of Lucifer's rebellion in the ancient past.

In order for this interpretation to be true and the "Rule of First Mention" to remain valid, every use of the word "generations" in the Bible (all 114 references) must refer to a starting point in time which skips over a previous generation or generations. And that appears to be the case. The third mention of "generations" begins with Noah:

"These [are] the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man [and] perfect in his generations, [and] Noah walked with God."
(Genesis 6:9 KJV)

Noah was the beginning of a new generation, because he was the father of EVERY descendant who survived the flood and the father of us all, in the flesh. The destruction of the old world by the flood was a new starting point for reckoning the "generations," as all before him, from Adam to Lamech, are skipped over in that verse.

This brings us to the application of the "Rule of First Mention" to another word, "replenish" (Genesis 1:23 & Genesis 9:1):

1st Mention: "And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth."
(Genesis 1:28 KJV)

2nd Mention: "And God blessed Noah and his sons, and said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth."
(Genesis 9:1 KJV)

In the second mention of the word "replenish" in the KJV Bible, the Lord God is commanding Noah to repopulate and refill the Earth after all of the Earth's previous land inhabitants were destroyed by a flood. Noah is the starting point of a new generation. The command to "replenish" follows these event specifics:

1. The old world was flooded with water.

2. It was a judgment from God upon a world where the cumulative state of evil that began with a single act of disobedience (in this case Adam's sin) had led to a world filled with death and violence.

3. Noah was the beginning point for repopulation of the new world after the flood.

Referring back to the 1st mention of "replenish" where God commanded Adam to do so, we find these similarities:

1. The Earth was also flooded with water (Genesis 1:2).

2. This would infer that this flood was also a judgment from God upon a previous world where the cumulative state of evil that began with a single act of disobedience (in this case Lucifer's sin in the distant past) had led to an old world filled with death and violence. The Earth's geology is consistent with a long history of death and violence.

3. Adam was therefore the starting point for repopulation of the new world created in seven days after a flood. He replaced a race of beings that had populated the previous world.

If the "Rule of First Mention" is valid, these things must be so. We now will show you a third application of this rule that confirms this truth:

1st Mention: "And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness [was] upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters."
(Genesis 1:2 KJV)

2nd Mention: "I beheld the earth, and, lo, [it was] without form, and void; and the heavens, and they [had] no light. I beheld the mountains, and, lo, they trembled, and all the hills moved lightly. I beheld, and, lo, [there was] no man, and all the birds of the heavens were fled. I beheld, and, lo, the fruitful place [was] a wilderness, and all the cities thereof were broken down at the presence of the LORD, [and] by his fierce anger. For thus hath the LORD said, The whole land shall be desolate; yet will I not make a full end. For this shall the earth mourn, and the heavens above be black: because I have spoken [it], I have purposed [it], and will not repent, neither will I turn back from it."
(Jeremiah 4:23-28 KJV)

As mentioned earlier, in the second mention of "without form, and void" in the Bible the prophet is describing the condition of the Earth and heavens, not in the past, but in the future; and that future time is following the Great Tribulation and the return of the Lord Jesus Christ to this Earth. We know this is future and not a reference to Genesis 1:2 because of the following facts:

1. There is mention of cities being destroyed, but we know there were no cities built on the Earth by man, made in God's image, before Adam was created and men began to multiply.

2. The Lord is both physically present and angry (He is not a Spirit gently brooding over the creation as the commentators on Genesis 1:2 point out).

3. The tense of the phrase "the whole land shall" makes this a reference to a future, not a past event.

Following the heavens and Earth found in this condition "without form, and void" in Jeremiah, the Lord will regenerate the heavens and Earth for His earthly 1,000-year Kingdom (See Revelation chapter 20). The Lord Jesus Christ is the SECOND ADAM (Corinthians 15:22-47). This second Adam (the Lord) and His Eve (The Bride, His Church) will rule over another new "heavens and earth" made from the remains of our present heavens and Earth.

These regenerations of the heavens and earth are referred to as "worlds" throughout the Bible, and in every instance these regenerations are followed by destruction of the previous "world" arrangement:

"Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father:"
(Galatians 1:4 KJV)

"Who shall not receive manifold more in this present time, and in the world to come life everlasting."
(Luke 18:30 KJV)

"Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence."
(John 18:36 KJV)

"And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel."
(Matthew 19:28 KJV)

"Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness."
(2 Peter 3:13 KJV)

"Hath in these last days spoken unto us by [his] Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;"
(Heb. 1:2 KJV)

"Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear."
(Heb. 11:3 KJV)

"That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, I will open my mouth in parables; I will utter things which have been kept secret from the foundation of the world."
(Matthew 13:35 KJV)

The Greek word in the last two verses for "worlds" is "αιων " (as in eon) which means an age or perpetuity of specific prevailing conditions in time upon the face of the Earth.

When you examine the Scriptures in the light of the "Rule of First Mention" and see the harmonious comparison of types and meanings interpreted by their Scriptural meaning, the truth comes through clearly to those who have ears to hear and eyes to see. If these things are not true, then the interpretive "Rule of First Mention" is invalid.

The main reason many Christian Creation Scientists reject the Genesis Gap interpretation is because, in their sincere zeal to defend the traditional church view of creationism, they fail to discern the differences in meaning between the Biblical words like "earth" & "world" and "create" & "made" and in so doing fail to accept the literal wording of Bible at face value, although their claim is that they do.

Those who insist that the original Earth and all it contains were made for the first time in those seven famous days, about six thousand years ago, are quick to point out that Death came upon this world when Adam sinned:

"Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:"
(Romans 5:12 KJV)

That verse is absolutely true, in its context. Death entered this world (our world) when Adam sinned about 6000 years ago. And Adam was the first man, made in the image of God, who sinned. But if you don't understand the Biblical differences between the words "world" and "earth" you cannot grasp the truth of the following points of logic and common sense:

  1. The Scriptures say that the "serpent" tempted Eve and caused her and Adam to sin.
  2. If the serpent tempted the man and woman to sin against God, then the serpent was disobedient and evil before Adam and Eve.
  3. And if the "serpent" was evil before Adam fell, then the spirit of the serpent would have had to have sinned against God at some point of time BEFORE Adam sinned. Got that?
  4. Therefore, if Death comes by sin (see: Romans 6:23 and James 1:15), and the serpent was a sinner before Adam, then Death already existed BEFORE Adam and Eve sinned. It was Adam's disobedience which allowed "Death" to enter the newly-formed pristine world. It was Lucifer's disobedience and rebellion which allowed "Death" to enter the original, ancient world on the face of the Earth a long ago. That is what your Bible says.

Common Sense Conclusions:

  1. Adam may have been the first man to sin, but he was NOT the first living creature to sin.
  2. Death entered into the world when Adam sinned but death already existed at a point in time BEFORE Adam sinned, in a previous "world" on the face of the earth BEFORE Adam.

Therefore, the exact English wording of the KJV translation of the Scriptures and the Genesis Gap interpretation do not contradict the validity of the fossil evidence of Death's ancient presence and past workings on this planet, nor does the interpretation contradict the doctrine of Romans 5:12, because the exact period of time between when the "serpent" sinned in his "world" and when Adam sinned in the present "world" is not defined in the Bible, and that length of time could range across hundreds of millions of years of time, exactly as the geological observations suggest.

Since Adam was the first "man" created (made in God's Image), there could NOT have been a previous race of "men" in the ancient world. There were however races of life forms which were "manlike" in physical structure and appearance, that Adam and Eve were commissioned to replace:

"And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth."
(Genesis 1:28 KJV)

That would account for the remains of humanoid creatures such as the so-called "Neanderthal man" and other very old "manlike" remains that are undeniable artifacts of the fossil record but incorrectly interpreted by Evolutionists as early evidence of our ancestors. They were NOT our ancestors, but whatever they were they did exist in Earth's past and did have similar physical form to the men of this present world.

Many people say that the King James Bible is hard to understand. Actually, it would be more accurate to say that it's hard to Believe. Some things you just have to accept on faith. Again, my final admonition to you is TRUST THE HOLY BIBLE and lean not on your own understanding or church traditions. Additional studies: The History of the Bible & The Doctrine of the Bible

The link below leads to an easy to read online version of the complete King James Bible. This HTML Bible version has a main index with pictorial links to each of the Bible's sixty-six books. Each book has an index with links to the individual chapters with a short description of each chapter's content. This makes it easy to quickly look up topics. Each chapter has a 4-way 'sticky' navigation bar that stays on the screen while reading, so you can quickly move from one section to another. Best of all, the Bible passages are in large print on a soft-color background that is easy on the eyes, no matter if you are reading it on a smartphone, tablet or at a desktop terminal.

Next: The Bible

The King James Bible





Disclaimer: External Links from this website are for instructional or promotional purposes and do not constitute an endorsement
 by the The Bible, Genesis & Geology Ministry.

 All original text © 1997 - 2021
Gaines R. Johnson, D.D., D.Th.
The Bible, Genesis & Geology Ministry

Materials from this site may be freely copied to paper for personal use or church Bible studies.
 They may not be reproduced elsewhere on the Internet, for either personal or commercial use, without the express written permission of this Ministry.

Are you saved? Are you Sure? Click the image below for the Gospel Truth about the Lord Jesus Christ in your native language!