In The Beginning:
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Have you ever wondered how everything began? I suppose every boy and girl has thought about that. Flowers come from seeds, but where did the seeds come from? Well, from other flowers. And those flowers came from more seeds. And on and on, back to—what?

You may have seen puppies and kittens, bunnies or little chicks but where did they all come from? And what about the little fish and the frogs in the ponds? Well, of course, they came from their parents. But where did their parents come from?

In the Bible we can find the true story of how everything got started on earth. We can always trust that Book. So let’s go on a journey—all the way back to the beginning of our world! The first book in the Bible is called “Genesis.” That word means “Book of Beginnings.”

When we listen to any story, we like to have it begin at the beginning. That is where God begins in telling us the story of the world. The very first words are: “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.”

At first there was only a deep darkness. We have never seen a night so black as that darkness. Then God spoke: “Let there be light: and there was light.” Whenever God speaks, His word has power to do what He says! Only God can do that.

Without light everything that grows on the earth would die; there would be no grass, no trees or flowers. Not one living, growing thing. Did you ever see a plant kept in a dark place for a while? How pale and sick it looks! But if we take it into the light in a few days it grows stronger, its leaves turn green, and its stalk firm. Without light it would have died.

After God made the light, He said it was good and He divided the light from the darkness; and He called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. This gives us a time for quiet rest, and a time for work, study and play.

Then the Bible says, “The evening and the morning were the First Day.” This was the First Day of Creation Week.

On the Second Day, God made a covering for the earth, which goes all around it and is many miles deep. This covering we call air. This air is also called the firmament, or sky.

We can not see the air, but we have all seen what it can do. When it is in motion we call it wind. It moves the leaves of the trees, ripples the surface of water, and fills the sails of sailboats on the rivers and oceans. Sometimes wind blows so hard that it blows down giant trees, takes roofs from houses, and tosses the waters of the sea about in angry waves.

Air is very light, but it is heavier than the mist that rises from the lakes, rivers and oceans when the sun shines upon them. This mist is what makes the beautiful, fluffy clouds that float high in the sky. Sometimes they look white; sometimes storm clouds look deep grey to us with lightning flashing in their dark folds. At dawn and sunset the clouds can look rose-colored, purple, red, or like shining gold.

Nothing can live long without light, and nothing can live long without air. If the covering of air were taken away, soon nothing would be left alive on the earth. The water-mist in the air also helps to keep the earth warm. God saw the air that it was good and this was the Second Day of Creation.

On the Third Day of Creation, God said for the waters to gather together and let the dry land appear—and it was so. Then God called the dry land Earth; and the waters that were gathered together He called Seas.

Think about how the earth looked at first with nothing growing on it at all. But God did not leave the earth all bare. He said for grass, plants and trees to appear. A soft, thick carpet of grass, dotted with bright colored, sweet-smelling flowers spread over the bare earth. He covered the hills with forests.

The trees and plants that give us lovely fruit to eat were all made on the third day. They all had seeds in or on them to grow more plants. God said they were good, and the evening and the morning were the Third Day.

So we see that for day One, Two and Three, God created spaces then on days Four Five and Six, He filled the spaces. Let's read how He did that.

On the fourth day the sun appeared to light the day, and the moon and stars, to light the night. “And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: He made the stars also.” These not only divide the day from the night, but they are “for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years.” The seasons—spring, summer, autumn, and winter—happen as the earth circles around the sun.

The Fifth Day came and the world was lovely to look at, but there was nothing moving on it except the trees and grass rustling in the breeze and every thing was quiet. God spoke again and said for living things to be in the water and in the air.

Now birds, insects and fishes—everything that flies in the air, or that swims in the sea appeared. Birds flitted happily about in the branches, filling the air with lovely songs. Insects flew from flower to flower; and the waters were filled with fishes and even great whales.

God saw all this and said it was good and He told them to have lots of babies. And the evening and the morning were the Fifth Day.

On the Sixth Day God said for all kinds of four footed beasts to appear. Cattle and sheep, cats and dogs, lions and bears, squirrels and deer—so many kinds of animals! God saw it was all good.

The Very First Man
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Now God was ready for His most important creation. He had made the earth all ready and now He was about to make a man. But He did not just say ‘Let a man appear’. No, He did something extra special.

“And God said; Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.”

“And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.”

It was on this earth that God decided to do something different than He had ever done before. When God created the angels, He spoke what He wanted and they were created. Angels were made full grown and although they are wise and wonderful beings, there was never any boy angels or girl angels and angels do not have baby angels. If God wanted one hundred angels, He spoke and there was one hundred angels.

But on this earth God did something else. He made animals and man male and female. He made them able to have babies like themselves. Why did He do this. Well, I am sure He had many reasons that we could not even understand but one reason was He wanted man to have a little understanding of what a Creator feels like, so He made man able to 'create' in man's image as God created in His image. The power all came from God of course, but God was sharing some of His Creative ability with the creatures on this earth.

The animals could also have babies, but Man was different from the animals; he could think about the wonderful things around him and tell his thoughts in words. He could move about, and work, sing, and pray. He could even get to know God as a part of God’s family. Man was given creative ability, he could plan, make things and would be able to understand God in a special way.

God called the man Adam, and made him to be the caretaker of all the earth. He was to have dominion, or power over the fish, and over the birds, and all the living things in all the earth. Man was to love and care for the animals as God loved and cared for all His creatures. God showed Adam all of the animals and Adam gave each of them a name. What Adam called them was their name; for the Lord gave Adam wisdom to name every creature just right.

As Adam saw all the animals, he saw there were boys and girls of each kind but he did not see any other person like himself. God said that it was not good for man to be alone. So now He caused Adam to fall asleep and again He did something special. He did not just say, ‘Let there be a woman’, Oh no! He took a rib from Adam and made a lovely woman and when Adam woke up God brought her to Adam. He wanted them both to realize that though they were separate people, they were to be one in thought and purpose.

Adam said she would be called ‘woman’ because she came from man. He called her Eve and she was his wife, companion and friend. Adam and Eve were to be the father and mother of all the people who should live on the earth.

God saw all that He had made and now He said that it was very good and the evening and the morning were the Sixth Day.

On Day 1, He made light and on Day 4, He made bodies for that light:
On Day 2, He made Air and water spaces and on Day 5, He filled those spaces with life.
On Day 3, He made land and filled it with food and on Day 6, He filled that space with living things.

Now Six days had passed and God’s work of Creation was finished. Then He gave another special gift to mankind. He made one more 'space', He made the Seventh Day and He did something wonderful--He filled that space with Himself. As the sun began to set on the sixth day and the Seventh Day began, the Lord rested from all His work and set aside that special time to spend with man. He called the day ‘Sabbath’, which means the Father’s Rest.

He did not rest because He was tired, but because His work was finished. By resting on the seventh day, God set an example to man to rest on this day and remember his great Creator and spend the day with Him. As He did this, He was promising to always be there in that space of time, ready to be with His children in a special way. There was no other day that God entered into in that special way.

“And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it (made it special): because that in it He had rested from all his work which God created and made.”

The Sabbath is God’s special memorial of His work of creation, and it comes to us week by week. It’s the birthday of the world. It can never be lost and it will last forever.

As the Lord looked at the earth He had made, and at the happy, loving man and woman, He saw that all His work was “very good.” Therefore He was glad about it, and all the angels in heaven were glad too and sang happy songs. God knew that this special creation He had made, sharing some of His own Creation ability, would one day cause Him much pain, but as He looked at Adam and Eve that first Sabbath, He felt it was worth it.

The Garden of Eden
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The whole earth was like a lovely garden. It was much more beautiful than we ever see it now, even in early summer. But the Lord made a special home for Adam and Eve. He planted a garden and filled it with every tree and plant that was very pretty or full of lovely fruit. He called the garden ‘Eden’ and gave it to Adam and Eve to be their home.

What a happy home they had there in Eden. Even the beasts loved man and liked to obey him. There was no fear in that wonderful home. All was love, and happiness, and peace.

The beautiful angels from Heaven often visited the happy pair in Eden. These heavenly visitors taught them about God and His love, and gave them lessons to help them to take proper care of their earthly home. God knew that Adam and Eve would not be happy to sit around and do nothing so he gave them the job of caring for the garden.

In the middle of the garden were two special trees. One was a wonderful tree called the ‘Tree of Life’. We are told that this tree had twelve kinds of fruit, a new crop every month and Adam and Eve could freely eat of the twelve kinds of beautiful fruit from this tree. As long as they could eat the fruit of this tree they would never get sick or die.

The other special tree in the garden was called the ‘Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil’. When God placed Adam and Eve in the lovely Garden of Eden, “to dress it and to keep it”, He talked to them about the trees. He gave them one rule. He said they could eat fruit from every tree in the garden but this one. They must not eat the fruit from that one tree.

This rule was a test to see if Adam and Eve would love and obey God or choose their own way. It was as small a test as God could make for them. They had millions of trees full of fruit and they could eat all they wanted, but from this one tree they were not to eat fruit. God told them if they did eat from it, they would surely die. To disobey God’s command to them would be a sin and sin brings death.

God is love. He did not wish sin to enter the world. He made man free so that he could choose right from wrong. God did not want man to be just a puppet. He wanted man to love God because he wanted to. You can’t truly love someone unless you are free to choose not to love them. God gave man the chance to choose whether he would love and obey Him or not.

Adam and Eve were also warned that there was someone who wanted to try and trick them into doing wrong. This someone could not bother them unless they went close to the ‘Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil’. In our next story we will learn who that someone was and where he came from.

An Angel Falls
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Everything was beautiful and peaceful in the center of God's Universe. Everyone loved God and was happy to obey Him in whatever He asked of them. Everyone helped one another. No one ever quarreled and no one was selfish, for this was heaven, long before our world was made.

The reason everyone was so happy was because God is love. He was the ruler, and everyone obeyed Him. The Bible tells us; “God is love.” 1 John 4:16. His nature, His law, is love. It ever has been; it always will be.

Everything God does is right, kind and loving. When everyone accepts Him as Ruler then all can be happy. They choose to obey Him because He is so good and they love Him so much. God never forces anyone to obey Him. He gives freedom of will to all, so that they may choose to serve Him.

So long as all created beings loved God and gladly obeyed Him—because they unselfishly loved Him,—there was perfect harmony throughout the universe of God. Love for one another was deep and unselfish. There was nothing to mar the happiness of heaven. But something happened which changed everything.

It all began with a beautiful, powerful angel in Heaven. His name was Lucifer, which means, “Son of the Morning.” Ezekiel 28:12-19, tells us about his place in Heaven, his beauty and power. Lucifer was wise too, for God said, “Thou sealest up the sum, full of wisdom.” He was very beautiful, for the text says he was “perfect in beauty.” He has been in the Eden home of Adam and Eve. “Thou hast been in Eden the garden of God.”

He was a great musician, and led the music and singing of the hosts of angels in their morning and evening songs of praise to God.

He was “created” by the power of God. All the angels were created full grown, and not born as children. Lucifer’s position was by the throne of God, with his wings outstretched above it. All the brightness and glory of God streamed over him and made him appear bright and beautiful. This was Lucifer’s place as covering cherub, close to the throne of God in Heaven.

All his wisdom, beauty, power, and special place were given him by God who had created him. The Creator made him for the special work He wished him to do. Lucifer owed everything to his Lord. But, like some people who have riches and power, he became proud of his glory. He forgot that it was all the gift of God. The text says, “Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty.” Ezekiel 28:17.

The Son of God was above him, and equal with His Father because He was not a created being, He was part of the Godhead. Lucifer started to think about his beauty and power and decided that he ought to be equal with God. The prophet Isaiah says about him, “Thou hast said in thine heart, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will be like the Most High.” Isaiah 14:13, 14.

But God could not permit this. The very thought of it by Lucifer was sin, for it was pride and selfishness. The Bible tells us that sin is not obeying God’s perfect Law—not obeying God.

Lucifer became a rebel and told lies and false stories to the other angels. It was Lucifer’s plan to fool the angels with lies about the goodness and plans of God. Some of the angels believed him because no one in heaven had ever lied before and so some chose to be on his side against God and His Law.

Many angels did not believe his lies and tried to get him to come back to God. Those angels that Lucifer could not get to follow him, he lied about. He said that they were selfish and just didn’t care about the interests of heavenly beings. The very work which he himself was doing, he blamed on those who remained true to God.

He was saying that he could run things better than God and his way would give the angels more freedom. But as soon as he got some of the angels on his side he put them to work for him and made slaves of them.

God and His Son and even the loyal angels tried to get Lucifer to stop what he was doing but he would not listen. Lucifer and his angels had become God’s enemies, rebels against His government. They could not be allowed to remain in heaven, and finally the Bible tells us that there was war in heaven! “Michael (God’s Son) and His angels fought against the dragon (Satan); and the dragon fought and his angels.” Revelation 12:7.

When Lucifer sinned and fell, his character and work were so changed that the beautiful name he had in Heaven was also changed. In Revelation 12:9, he is called “the dragon,” “that old serpent,” “the devil,” and “Satan.”

Of course Satan could not win a battle against his own Creator. “He was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.” Revelation 12:9. In Isaiah 14:12, we read, “How art thou fallen from Heaven, 0 Lucifer, Son of the Morning! How art thou cut down to the ground.” Jesus said to His disciples, “I beheld Satan as lightning fall from Heaven.” Luke 10:18.

When Satan knew that he had lost Heaven forever, his heart was filled with anger and hatred for all that was good. From that day on he has kept trying to fool others and get everybody on his side, to hate and disobey God, and everybody who does, becomes Satan’s slave.

And so it was that Lucifer the “light bearer” became Satan “the adversary” or enemy.

When Satan saw that God had made something very special in this earth and when he saw that God had shared some of His creative power with Adam and Eve he became even more angry and jealous. He knew that God had done this to have someone special to take the place that Lucifer and his angels had in heaven before they rebelled and had to be thrown out. This made him hate Adam and Eve even more and he was determined to trick them into being on his side in rebellion against God.

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