Psalm 104 is considered a creation psalm, a poetic parallel to Genesis 1. It exalts the “LORD” (Yahweh—the personal name of Israel’s God) as the transcendent Creator and sovereign Sustainer of all things. Thus, the only appropriate response on the part of humanity is to offer praise and worship.
Free resource: RTB 101: Big Bang
Recommended resource: The Creator and the Cosmos
Just as the tangible reality of a tent is its surface—not what is interior or exterior to it—so too, the reality of the universe is its surface. Just as one stretches out a tent to occupy it, so too God expanded the universe to give humanity a place to live—not forever but for as long as He sees fit.
Free resource: “Big Bang: The Bible Taught It First!”
Recommended resource: Why the Universe Is the Way It Is
Here the psalmist is reflecting back upon the Earth—a water world—in its primordial state before the events of creation day three (Psalm 104:7–9), in which continents appear. This passage provides a remarkably accurate depiction of early Earth as now revealed through scientific investigation.
Free resource: RTB 101: Origin of Life
Recommended resource: Origins of Life
Majestic mountains; golden plains; stunning seashores. These awe-inspiring sights reveal God’s care in providing habitats for life. More than two-thirds of Earth’s life lives on land or in the shallow oceans of the continental shelves.
Free resource: “Some Like It Hot—Especially the Continents”
Recommended resource: The Bigger Picture on Creation set (study guide and DVD)
God separates the waters above from the waters below on creation day two and, in doing so, sets up the water cycle. Psalm 104:10–13 teaches that, with this cycle, God has provided the essential component for the existence of advanced life on land. Water’s many unique characteristics help make life on Earth possible.
Free resource: “Water Fine-Tuned for Life”
Recommended resource: 10 Breakthroughs of 2009
Plants produce far more food than what they need for their own survival. God has designed plants not only to sustain themselves and feed Earth’s creatures, but also to please the senses with their varied tastes, colors, and textures. Earth’s plants testify of God’s love for all Earth’s life.
Free resource: “Thank God for Flowers”
Recommended resource: Days of Creation (audio CD set)
On day three, God created the land and filled it with plant life. Psalm 104:16–18 teaches that, in doing so, God prepared Earth’s land for advanced life (created on days five and six) as a place to dwell and to be sustained, with the help of the water cycle—established on day two. We see purpose in all that God does.
Free resource: “Origin of Soulish Animals”
Recommended resource: Hidden Treasures in the Book of Job
The Sun heats Earth’s surface. The Earth’s tilted axis brings summer and winter in due time. The Moon keeps Earth’s axis from wobbling. Humans work the ground to bring forth food, and carnivores maintain the health of ecological systems. Everything God fashioned fulfills His purposes, and these systems all rely on His sustaining power to operate properly.
Free resource: “Big Collision, Beautiful Moon”
Recommended resource: Impact Events: The Solar System
The more we scientists learn about the history of Earth’s life, the more compelling the conclusion that God packed Earth with maximal diversity of life and duration of life. This profusion of God’s creative expression brings joy to humanity and an abundance of biodeposits to assist us in the fulfillment of the Great Commission.
Free resource: “The Resources in Shortest Supply”
Recommended resource: RTB Live! vol. 8 – Revealing Fossil Record
Referring to creation days five and six, this passage emphasizes God’s active role in Earth’s cycles of life and death. Thus, the death of plants and animals is rightly understood (and affirmed by science) as part of God’s good creation. Research shows that carnivores give stability to ecosystems by promoting biodiversity and, ironically, minimizing the spread of disease and parasite infestation.
Free resource: “Predators Essential for Life’s Diversity”
Recommended resource: Life and Death in Eden
One might assume earthquakes and volcanoes are bad because they are destructive, but if it weren’t for their existence, Earth’s capacity to support life would be greatly diminished. The power on display in these tectonic upheavals seem miniscule in comparison to the immeasurable might of the God who set them in motion.
Free resource: “Purposeful Plate Tectonics”
Recommended resource: Impact Events: The Earth
God’s sovereign works in creating and sustaining the heavens and the Earth to serve as a hospitable habitat for humankind are worthy of all praise. The worshipful release of gratitude to God in song and reverent reflection upon His goodness is the antithesis to what flows from the hearts of rebellious sinners.
Free resource: “Guilt, Grace, and Gratitude”
Recommended resource: A World of Difference