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Genesis 1:4

    Genesis 1:4 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    And God, looking on the light, saw that it was good: and God made a division between the light and the dark,

    Webster's Revision

    And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.

    World English Bible

    God saw the light, and saw that it was good. God divided the light from the darkness.

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.

    Clarke's Commentary on Genesis 1:4

    God divided the light from the darkness - This does not imply that light and darkness are two distinct substances, seeing darkness is only the privation of light; but the words simply refer us by anticipation to the rotation of the earth round its own axis once in twenty-three hours, fifty-six minutes, and four seconds, which is the cause of the distinction between day and night, by bringing the different parts of the surface of the earth successively into and from under the solar rays; and it was probably at this moment that God gave this rotation to the earth, to produce this merciful provision of day and night. For the manner in which light is supposed to be produced, see Genesis 1:16, under the word sun.

    Barnes' Notes on Genesis 1:4

    Then saw God the light that it was good. - God contemplates his work, and derives the feeling of complacence from the perception of its excellence. Here we have two other archetypal faculties displayed in God, which subsequently make their appearance in the nature of man, the understanding, and the judgment.

    The perception of things external to Himself is an important fact in the relation between the Creator and the creature. It implies that the created thing is distinct from the creating Being, and external to Him. It therefore contradicts pantheism in all its forms.

    The judgment is merely another branch of the apprehensive or cognitive faculty, by which we note physical and ethical relations and distinctions of things. It comes immediately into view on observing the object now called into existence. God saw "that it was good." That is good in general which fulfills the end of its being. The relation of good and evil has a place and an application in the physical world, but it ascends through all the grades of the intellectual and the moral. That form of the judgement which takes cognizance of moral distinctions is of so much importance as to have received a distinct name, - the conscience, or moral sense.

    Here the moral rectitude of God is vindicated, inasmuch as the work of His power is manifestly good. This refutes the doctrine of the two principles, the one good and the other evil, which the Persian sages have devised in order to account for the presence of moral and physical evil along with the good in the present condition of our world.

    Divided between the light and between the darkness. - God then separates light and darkness, by assigning to each its relative position in time and space. This no doubt refers to the vicissitudes of day and night, as we learn from the following verse: