Lesson 3

The Second Day or Epoch

"O LORD, Thou art my God; I will exalt Thee,
I will give thanks in Thy name; For Thou hast worked wonders,
plans formed long ago, with perfect faithfulness."

Isaiah 25:1 (New American Standard Bible)

How long is a day? We usually think of a day as being twenty-four hours long. But Psalm 95:8 speaks of the "day of temptation" in the wilderness, and we know that it is speaking of the forty years which the Israelites spent in the wilderness.

The Apostle Peter wrote that "one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day" (2 Peter 3:8). One of the definitions for "day" given in the dictionary says, "any particular amount of time." We see then that many different amounts of time can be called a "day." Thousands of years were needed for the work of each creative day.

During the second creative day God made the firmament —the air around the earth. Air would be needed in the future when humans and animals were created and they would need to be able to breathe. The earth had rings of water and minerals around it, some of which would fall to the earth and become oceans and lakes and rivers, etc. The remaining waters would become clouds. In between was the clearer, drier air (atmosphere or firmament).

Day Two ended with the earth prepared for lower forms of plant life. Step by step God was preparing the earth to be a home for creatures not yet created and for an immense number of plants and lower animals. His plans and purposes are intelligent and orderly and show a wonderful design.

It is interesting that of all the nine planets in our solar system only the earth has plenty of life-giving oxygen. If we go beyond about four miles up into the atmosphere, we will need another way to get oxygen or die. The astronauts always carry their own "atmosphere" with them.

Let us give thanks to our great Heavenly Father and his dear Son! How wisely and carefully they planned every detail of creation.

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