Genesis chapter one affords us a glimpse into the event of God actively creating the universe we presently inhabit. Let me emphasize; this is revelation given to us by God, about His activity before the existence of human beings and His relationship with human beings. In His description of His activity, we see Him do one thing before another thing (commonly referred to as “one-thing-after-another) – in His own experience, there was “one day,” “a second day,” “a third day” (not the contemporary Christian band), “a fourth day,” “a fifth day,” “a sixth day,” until we read, “Thus the heavens and the earth were completed, and all their hosts. By the seventh day, God completed His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done” (Ge.2:1-2). Contrary to the Greek concept of “timelessness” or “eternal now,” we see God experiencing succession, sequence and duration. Of course, certain ideas and assumptions have become so ingrained in the thinking of many that some will respond by saying, “That’s what it appears to be saying, but we know that it can’t mean that because God is timeless.”
A few quick points of clarifications:
God is eternal. This means He exists in endless duration that extends endlessly into the past, continues in present reality and will continue into the future. To say He is not timeless is not the same as saying He is not eternal.
The effects of succession and duration upon God are not the same as the effects experienced by man. We experience loss of energy to be combated with eating, drinking and sleeping as well as physical deterioration that includes graying and wrinkling, loss of memory, etc. We learn, from further revelation, “He who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, He who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep” (Ps.121:3-4). One might ask why God had to “rest” on the seventh day. This word has an etymological range involving the meaning “cease,” as in Ge.8:22 and other places.
Beyond this particular issue, God reveals that, after each installment of creation, He evaluated what He had created. As the project unfolded, we see that He evaluated His work and expressed His satisfaction as we read, “God saw that it was good.”
This snapshot allows us to see that God, Himself, is a dynamic being – in His own experience and activity. This is, early in the narrative, quite contrary to the perspective developed by the Greek philosophers of a static, “unmoved mover” who lives in an “eternal now,” never experiencing anything new at the risk of ruining their concept of perfection.