• | Chris McCann
  • Audio: Length: 26:57
  • Passages covered: Genesis 1:9-10, Ecclesiastes 3:19-20, Exodus 14:15-16,22,28-30, Psalm 66:5-6 Nehemiah 9:11, Joshua 4:22-24, Psalm 37:9,34.

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Genesis 1 Series, Part 12, Verses 9-10

Welcome to EBible Fellowship’s Bible study in the Book of Genesis. This is study #12 of Genesis, chapter 1 and we are going to read Genesis 1:9-10:

And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so. And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that it was good.

In our last study we saw how the “waters” can represent people. We also saw how the Hebrew word translated as “gathered together,” Strong’s #6960, is often translated as “wait” in relationship to waiting upon God for salvation. We saw that in one place where this word is translated as “gathered together” it can identify with “death.” It says in Ecclesiastes 3:19:

For that which befalleth the sons of men befalleth beasts; even one thing befalleth them: as the one dieth, so dieth the other; yea, they have all one breath; so that a man hath no preeminence above a beast: for all is vanity. All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again.

We know the historical record and we recognize that God created the earth and it was covered with water and then He removed the water from part of the earth to reveal dry land, but what about the spiritual meaning? We saw earlier that when God said, “Let there be light,” or when God spoke of the original creation being “without form and void,” these things had spiritual connotations. God was already teaching the Gospel from the very beginning of creation and this is what He is doing again in Genesis 1:9. When God says, “Let the waters,” we know it can represent people, so it is like He is saying, “Let the people wait unto one place.” This “one place” relates to death and we wonder about that. How is it possible that God would speak of people waiting in death? But when we consider God’s salvation program and the things the Bible tells us, it reveals that mankind is “dead” in their sins. We are spiritually dead from our beginning. When Adam and Eve sinned they died, spiritually, on that very day and all mankind has been in that spiritual condition ever since unless God saves them.

We saw earlier in these verses God is speaking of death. Man dies like a beast and all go to “one place,” which is the grave or death. That is why He says that they are of the dust and go to dust again. There is no mistaking that this “one place” is referring to death. We also found the words “one place” used together to speak of man, in Ecclesiastes 6:6:

Yea, though he live a thousand years twice told, yet hath he seen no good: do not all go to one place?

Eventually, no matter how long you live, you go to “one place.” You go to the grave and return to dust. It is not very long at all if your life is temporal because it has an end. No matter how long you may live in comparison to others, it is nothing when we compare it to eternity. In Ecclesiastes 6, verse 6, the “one place” is referring to “death,” so how are we to understand our verse in Genesis 1, verse 9, where God says, “Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together unto one place,” or that they are to “wait” unto on place? We can see how “waters” can be people, according to the Bible, and they could be people “waiting” unto “one place,” which identifies with death. What are they waiting for? The next part of our verse says, in Genesis 1:9:

… and let the dry land appear: and it was so.

The word “dry” is Strong’s #3004 and this word is found 14 times in the Old Testament. It is a word that relates to the opening of the sea in the exodus when the Israelites crossed the Red Sea. We will take a look at that because when we slow down and read the verses, it really helps us get a better understanding, rather than just making a statement that this word identifies with the “dry land” as God makes a pathway. When we see how it is used repeatedly, it makes more of an impression upon us and we are more likely to remember it in relationship to the Bible verses. Ultimately, that is what we want to do when we study the Bible. We want to remember the things we learn so we can keep them in mind.

In Exodus, chapter 14 the Hebrew word “dry” is found three times. It says in Exodus 14:15-16:

And JEHOVAH said unto Moses, Wherefore criest thou unto me? speak unto the children of Israel, that they go forward: But lift thou up thy rod, and stretch out thine hand over the sea, and divide it: and the children of Israel shall go on dry ground through the midst of the sea.

Here, there is water before them. The only way of escape is to cross the water, but they cannot cross. God miraculously divided the water and made a pathway to the other side and it is a “dry” pathway. Normally, if one could divide water, it would leave a muddy bottom and you would just trudge along. If you had carts and animals, it would be very difficult and it would take quite a while to cross on a sea bottom, but God made it dry. Of course, if God can part the sea (and He did), then He could certainly dry up the ground underneath the sea for His people to cross over. It says in Exodus 14:22:

And the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea upon the dry ground: and the waters were a wall unto them on their right hand, and on their left.

Then it says a little further down in Exodus 14:28-30:

And the waters returned, and covered the chariots, and the horsemen, and all the host of Pharaoh that came into the sea after them; there remained not so much as one of them. But the children of Israel walked upon dry land in the midst of the sea; and the waters were a wall unto them on their right hand, and on their left. Thus JEHOVAH saved Israel that day out of the hand of the Egyptians; and Israel saw the Egyptians dead upon the sea shore.

The dry land was created by God temporarily. Basically, it was a similar action to what God did in Genesis, chapter 1, where the earth was covered with water and He began to gather the waters together so that dry land appeared. We just saw in these three verses that the “dry land” was a means of deliverance. Without the appearance of dry land the Israelites would have been overcome by the Egyptian army and, perhaps, killed by them, but God delivered them through the creation of a patch of dry ground in the midst of the sea. So as we are looking to understand the word “dry,” we have seen it used three times in this context in this chapter, but keep in mind that the word is only found 14 times in the Old Testament, so we have seen four uses of this word in regard to the crossing of the Red Sea. Actually, it is used more times than that because it is used in Psalm 66:5-6:

Come and see the works of God: he is terrible in his doing toward the children of men. He turned the sea into dry land: they went through the flood on foot: there did we rejoice in him.

Here is another reference to the crossing of the Red Sea and God making the sea into dry ground.

It says in Nehemiah 9:11:

And thou didst divide the sea before them, so that they went through the midst of the sea on the dry land; and their persecutors thou threwest into the deeps, as a stone into the mighty waters.

We can see the distinction. If you are on the dry land, you are saved and delivered and you live, but it was the waters that destroyed the Egyptians as the waters collapsed upon them and they drowned in the Red Sea.

So, almost half of the references to “dry” land point to deliverance and salvation. This word is also used in association with the crossing of Jordan in Joshua 4:22-24:

Then ye shall let your children know, saying, Israel came over this Jordan on dry land. For JEHOVAH your God dried up the waters of Jordan from before you, until ye were passed over, as JEHOVAH your God did to the Red sea, which he dried up from before us, until we were gone over: hat all the people of the earth might know the hand of JEHOVAH, that it is mighty: that ye might fear JEHOVAH your God for ever.

There are sufficient Scriptures to show that the dry land associates with salvation. Going back to Genesis, chapter 1 we saw that the “waters” represent people that are waiting in the condition of death. You know, God’s people wait in the condition of death until the day of salvation for each one of us – we had to wait upon the Lord to grant salvation to us because salvation is of the Lord. God must do the work of saving through the faith of Christ, so we waited in death. Even after salvation of our souls, people have died physically and their spirits go to be with the Lord but there is death in their bodies. Their bodies, as it were, are waiting in death for God to make the pathway of the dry land to appear so they can cross over into the Promised Land. Then they will become completely new creatures in both body and soul in the day of the resurrection of the dead.

So we can see that this word “dry” relates to crossing the Red Sea, which represents deliverance from the enemies, the kingdom of Satan, as typified by the Egyptians. God also caused His people to cross Jordan on dry land and that is a picture of entering the Promised Land of the new earth, as typified by the land of Canaan. The promise to Abraham was that he would receive the land of Canaan for an everlasting inheritance. We know that is not possible in regard to the literal land of Canaan in the Middle East because this entire world will be destroyed one day soon. A promise of God is an obligation that must be fulfilled and God cannot lie, but it is not fulfilled in the current land in the Middle East. That cannot be and, therefore, the promise to Abraham of the land for an everlasting inheritance points to the “new earth,” so crossing Jordan into the land of Canaan points to crossing over into the new earth.

The “waters” wait unto “one place.” Man waits unto death. Then God said, “Let the dry land appear,” and it was so. God makes a pathway of salvation for those that have waited upon Him, His elect people.

Then it says in Genesis 1:10:

And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that it was good.

The dry land was called “Earth” and the word “earth” originally pointed to this earth, but God uses the very same word to speak of the new earth which He promised to those He has saved. This word “earth” is Strong’s 776 and it is often translated as “land.” When God made promise to Abraham of the land for an everlasting possession, it is the same word that is translated as “earth” in our verse: “And God called the dry land Earth.”

In the Bible the promises of God to those He saves are wonderful and glorious in that not only will your sins be forgiven and you will live for evermore, but you will dwell in a perfect land that will be yours for evermore. If you build a house, another will not inhabit it. If you plant a vineyard, another will not eat the fruit of it. Your building projects will continue into eternity future and you can even keep building something and it will not be a “vain thing,” as it is in this present earth. The things of this earth will rust, decay and become corrupt and pass away, but in the new earth there will be no rust or corruption and things will not pass away. They will be eternal, meaning that everything that is done has value and purpose and meaning. In this present life, vanity and emptiness come as a result of the temporal nature of things in this world, including our own lives, but in the next earth we will not die and leave a project half done. Our project will not be destroyed. It will not collapse. There will not be a hurricane, tornado or earthquake to bring down our project, but everything will be enduring and steadfast and it will continue into eternity future.

Can you imagine the things that could be built if you could keep working on it and building it up? Just look at what man can do in “short spurts” in the little season of time he has in this life. When men build things in this world they have to keep fixing it continually. When they build a road it looks beautiful, but then comes winter and there are soon potholes or something goes wrong with the pipes below the street and they have to dig it up. There are constant repairs and maintenance and, of course, that slows progress. Once a city is all nice and beautiful and up to date, then a tsunami hits the city or an earthquake brings down the city and they must start over again. That is not the nature of the new heaven and new earth. There will no calamities. There will be no curse upon the earth that brings about the calamities and, therefore, it will be incredible to see what could develop and result from the ongoing building up and edification of a thing for evermore into eternity future.

The dry land was called “Earth,” and what is in view spiritually is the new earth. We read in Psalm 37:9:

For evildoers shall be cut off: but those that wait upon JEHOVAH, they shall inherit the earth.

The Hebrew word that was translated as “gathered together” is the same word translated as “wait” in Psalm 37, verse 9. We could say that those that are gathered together shall inherit the earth. It is also translated the same way in Psalm 37:34:

Wait on JEHOVAH, and keep his way, and he shall exalt thee to inherit the land: when the wicked are cut off, thou shalt see it.

So we have this very early historical account in Genesis and it is true history. We are reading in Genesis, chapter 1, of how God created the universe and all things. This is exactly how He did it, in the order that He did it, day by day through the six days of creation. But, spiritually, God is already painting a picture of when there will be sin in the world and He prefigures man as waiting in death for the “dry” land to appear, which will be the pathway into the new earth they will inherit for evermore in eternity future.