Genesis 1:1

“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.”

King James Version (KJV)

Other Translations for Genesis 1:1

In the beginning God created the Heauen, and the Earth.
- King James Version (1611) - View 1611 Bible Scan

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
- New American Standard Version (1995)

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
- American Standard Version (1901)

At the first God made the heaven and the earth.
- Basic English Bible

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
- Darby Bible

In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
- Webster's Bible

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
- World English Bible

In the beginning of God's preparing the heavens and the earth --
- Youngs Literal Bible

IN THE beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
- Jewish Publication Society Bible

Bible Commentary for Genesis 1:1

Wesley's Notes for Genesis 1:1

1:1 Observe here. 1. The effect produced, The heaven and the earth - That is, the world, including the whole frame and furniture of the universe. But 'tis only the visible part of the creation that Moses designs to give an account of. Yet even in this there are secrets which cannot be fathomed, nor accounted for. But from what we see of heaven and earth, we may infer the eternal power and godhead of the great Creator. And let our make and place, as men, mind us of our duty, as Christians, which is always to keep heaven in our eye, and the earth under our feet. Observe 2. The author and cause of this great work, God. The Hebrew word is Elohim; which (1.) seems to mean The Covenant God, being derived from a word that signifies to swear. (2.) The plurality of persons in the Godhead, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. The plural name of God in Hebrew, which speaks of him as many, tho' he be but one, was to the Gentiles perhaps a favour of death unto death, hardening them in their idolatry; but it is to us a favour of life unto life, confirming our faith in the doctrine of the Trinity, which, tho' but darkly intimated in the Old Testament, is clearly revealed in the New. Observe 3. The manner how this work was effected; God created, that is, made it out of nothing. There was not any pre - existent matter out of which the world was produced. The fish and fowl were indeed produced out of the waters, and the beasts and man out of the earth; but that earth and those waters were made out of nothing. Observe 4. When this work was produced; In the beginning - That is, in the beginning of time. Time began with the production of those beings that are measured by time. Before the beginning of time there was none but that Infinite Being that inhabits eternity. Should we ask why God made the world no sooner, we should but darken counsel by words without knowledge; for how could there be sooner or later in eternity?

Discussion for Genesis 1:1

  • Chris - in Reply on Genesis 1:1
    The Book of Judges shows Israel in limbo. The great leadership of Moses & Joshua ended with their deaths, & the ruler ship of the kings had not begun. And to make matters worse, there was no prophetic voice to be heard at this time, not until the last judge & prophet, Samuel. So the spiritual state of Israel was very low & they were given, as they often did, to the practises of the heathen around them. God had raised judges (like Othniel, Gideon, Samson, Deborah, Jepthah, etc.) in the time between Joshua & King Saul so that Israel could deal with their enemies & in conquering the land, but their spiritual life turned to one of full apostasy.

    Then in Judges chapter 17, we read, as an addendum, the life of one Micah & his Mother. He had taken some money from her without her knowledge, she had placed a curse on the one who stole it, Micah admitted to the crime & she forgave him. That money (the silver) was what she wanted to melt down to make an idol from it, for the benefit of her son & the household. Micah already had many idols, even consecrating one of his sons as a priest to administer the worship - showing how spiritually dry & perverted this family & their times were in. And verse 6 is the central theme of this Book, indeed of the life of Israel: "every man did that which was right in their own eyes", by forsaking the True God & His Commandments.

    Anyway, in time, a Levite (of the Tribe of Levi & consecrated to do service in the Tabernacle - but without a job), happened to pass by Micah's home. Micah took the opportunity to have him be his live-in priest instead, even offering a stipend, clothing & food. However, this Levite (we understand his name as Jonathan (18:30)), was not authorized to be a priest, but such was the condition in those days, that 'anything goes'. And you can read more of this fearful despicable condition in the following chapter & chapter 19, reminiscent of the days of Lot & Sodom & Gomorrah.
  • Charles David Smith - in Reply on Genesis 1:1
    Thanks for the obvious time and work you put into your response. It helped immensely. I am a retired Presbyterian minister, aged 74, and rapidly losing what memory I still have due to Alzheimer's. I, thanks be to God, had the funding to move into assisted living, where they take care of everything...
  • Chris - in Reply on Genesis 1:1
    The Lord bless you brother Charles, that even in your retired years, the Lord will continue to be gracious to you to strengthen both your mind & spirit as you re-read those familiar portions in the Word, that you once faithfully brought to your congregations in earlier years. I know that this illness can be very frustrating, but the merciful Lord understands & will enliven you as you continue to seek out the hidden treasures in the Word.
  • Charles D Smith - in Reply on Genesis 1:1
    What are the 3 most popular/

    versions of the Bible?
  • Chris - in Reply on Genesis 1:1
    I would say that the NIV would be the most popular, used extensively by individuals & Churches. Then, the KJV, NASB, RSV, Catholic version, GNB, ESV, etc. would all be popular depending on the Church, age of the reader & ease of reading.

    But for accuracy, I would still nominate the KJV & NASB as the most preferred. Others here may have their own views.
  • Charles David Smith - in Reply on Genesis 1:1
    Why do so many people still think that the King James Version of the Bible is the only "Correct" one?
  • Jesse - in Reply on Genesis 1:1

    I'm not sure I would say that the King James is the only correct Bible. There are some who are "King James" only and won't even get into a biblical conversation with anyone who doesn't use the KJV. I've read through this thread and there are some great responses. Chris has shared so much good information.

    Personally, for me, the KJV is my choice. I do trust some of the other versions, but not all of them. I still like to do side by side comparisons between various bibles. We all have to decide for ourselves which version we want, and what it is we are looking for when we choose, whether it be easy to read, accurate, or whatever the case might be.

    We have to keep in mind that whatever version we choose, they are all translations. Some might say that the KJV is the most accurate translation, but how do we know that unless we know the Greek?

    Something that is interesting to note is that the King James was written without copyright. I think every other translation has copyright. This tells me that if I chose to write a bible, I would have to change the wording from the other copyrighted versions.

    As far as I know, there are no two translations that are word for word. The problem we run into is once the wording starts to change because it has to, it can totally change the true meaning of the text. That's something we have to be careful about.

    As for the Greek, I have learned to read Greek the same way I would read English. I do read from the Textus Receptus at times. Greek is such an exact language, and I think that's why the Lord chose that language for the New Testament because it is full of doctrine and teaching. God chose an exact language for that. English is a very general language and I think it's why we have so much division in the body of Christ today because we can't agree on what our English text is saying.

    Thank you so much for your faithfulness to the Lord in your years in the ministry. May the Lord continue to bless you!
  • Chris - in Reply on Genesis 1:1
    Obviously, I can't speak for "so many people" who believe this, & only for myself. Though I would think that some of the points given may well be what these others are accepting. I won't give any expansion on my points as that would take up several pages, but just to list some, in support of the KJV.

    a. In doctrine, there has been no demonstrable error with a fuller, doctrinally superior text.

    b. In accuracy, it is a literal translation, gives person distinction, i.e. first, second, third person (as also seen in some other languages), use of italics, & no quotation marks (as they're not in the original languages).

    c. In style, complex compound sentences aren't split into smaller sentences, Hebraic expressions are preserved, the Greek word order & tense is followed more closely (Jesse, if he reads this, can shed more light on this as he is proficient in Greek), & it maintains the poetic nature of the Scriptures (found in books such as Job, Psalms, Proverbs, etc.).

    d. In background, though the state of the soul of King James has been questioned, he did pursue his quest for a Bible that was not like the prevailing Geneva Bible & one that had to be accurate & true to the original manuscripts. The KJV is free from modernist bias, and its translators were highly proficient in Hebrew, Greek & Latin and of course, in English.

    Those are just a few points why I believe in the great worth of the KJV. But as I've said in other comments, I would rather that a person read another 'easier' version of the Bible (such as NASB, NKJV) to learn its Truths, than to not read it at all leaving him bereft of God's Word for him. Blessings to you, dear brother; hope you're doing well & strong in spirit.
  • Richard in Christ - in Reply on Genesis 1:1
    Hello Charles,

    I don't think we who stick to the KJV bible would say it is the "only correct" one. It is the most accurate English translation from the Hebrew(OT) and Greek(NT) texts we have today. I'm not going to go so far as to say it is 100% accurate as I have seen subtle differences here and there going through the Hebrew and Greek texts. Although I will say it is probably more than 95% accurate and I am no scholar in translations. We must give credit to the 50+ highly respectable scholars who took years to translate the original Holy Scriptures to the first printed English Bible which is the 1611 KJV. The normal KJV is noted as the Oxford 1769 version. The only differences from the 1611 version are updated spellings, the letter "J" which was not yet in 1611, and some capitalization changes. Though it is word for word. Unless anyone else knows of any other differences.

    A couple details for you about the changes made to the modern Bible from the KJV. Anywhere between 7 & 25 entire verses and 2,000 to 7,000 words removed. Then between 3,000 and 10,000 words added in some translation. Words changed. The KJV Bible having over 780,000 words it may not seem to be much. Though some of the things they remove and change are very important.

    As I myself was led to Jesus Christ from I think a NASB Bible. Then seeing how much better the KJV was that is all I read now.

    It is the most accurate English translation we have of the Word of God. If anyone has any questions about something it would be better to ask another, or search for details, rather than just dis-regard the KJV because it is not like "modern" people speak today.

    Like stated it's not the "only correct" one it's the most accurate one in English. There has to be a best version of the English Bible and the KJV holds the crown.

    Revelation 22:18-19.

    God Bless.
  • Brandon on Genesis 1:1
    To say that Jesus is only a created son of God is to misunderstand that OF God is something that never happened before and trintarians don't seem to be able to grasp that .

    The argument that Jesus is only a man or like a prophet, of old or Jesus is God in the flesh . Both views are extremely in error . Jesus is the Son of God like no other . God being with him was exhibited in his life death and ressurection .

    These to me are men's confused views both wrong or out of balance . Jesus is the Son of God . And if understood very clear and simple .


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