Question about Creation & Ps. 104

I’m curious how those who hold to a functional creation view of Gen 1 might respond to a verse like Ps 104:2,

“Who cover Yourself with light as with a garment, Who stretch out the heavens like a curtain.”

I’m reading a book by Ben Stanhope right now and he points to this verse in this creation Psalm, as saying the psalmist believed God himself was the Light of Genesis 1:3 before the creation of the luminaries on Day 4. He also points to Is 60:19 to support his case. He (Stanhope) holds to a “polemicist” view of Gen 1, and says that this view of God being the light before the sun was “created” was also shared in Babylonian & Egyptian creation myths, and that this was Israel’s way of saying to them: our God is the true source of light, not yours.

This is all discussed further in chapter 9 of his book, (Mis)Interpreting Genesis.

I guess I’m confused because it does seem that he is correct — that Ps 104:2 sounds like they believe God himself was the light, hence they would not have held to the belief that the sun was already there in existence on Day 1, and that God was merely establishing that function of time on that day.

Interesting… that reminds me of Revelation 21:23 that says:

The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp.

So that would make it come full circle – the sun is just a temporary light in between creation and new creation.

However, the Psalms are very poetic so I don’t know if that’s what the Psalmist was going for or just using figurative, poetic language to describe God, as “light” is associated with God (and Jesus) in other ways too (clarity, truth, role as judge, etc.).


That would be consistent with the idea of the firmament, “hard as a molten mirror.” Genesis portrays God as imposing order on a pre-existing, watery, chaotic world. The firmament is created to separate the waters above from the waters below.

One might ask if that verse also supports the view that the universe’s structure is that of a solid shell over earth from which stars are attached, and if not, why not?

Oh course, it literally states that God is not the source of the light, but rather he covers himself with it, so there is that.

My personal belief is that it is a Psalm, and is poetic, and that light is more related to the light in 1 John that we are to walk in. However, the lines are blurred, and we see literal light from God when Moses met him on Mt. Sinai. I do not think a functional view fully explains Genesis 1 dully, but it is a helpful construct. I am currently reading the Manifold Beauty of Genesis One, (cowritten by Davidson and Turner @davidson )and finding it helpful in appreciating the different interpretive aspects of the creation story which complement each other.f

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