GENESIS: Chapter 1:1-2, copyright 2019 by JWA (Open this link in a new tab or window, then return here to read while listening: )

“The Hebrew verb bara (created) can mean one of two things. The usual sense of the verb, which is only used of God and of no other creature or person, is ‘to create by a divine supernatural act.’ However in this case, it means ‘to create something entirely new that did not exist previously by a divine supernatural act.’ This is confirmed by the analogy of Scripture, which means that the ENTIRE biblical revelation explains and clarifies the individual part or parts. See Colossians 1:16-17, Romans 11:36, Isaiah 45:7-10 and John 1:1-3.”

“So, to summarize, this verb in itself does not say the creation was out of nothing; in fact it is used elsewhere in this chapter where God creates using what He had already created. But in this case (1:1), ‘out of nothing’ clearly stated in those passages above that were penned by inspired writers.  So we rightly affirm it.”

“The Hebrew plural noun Elohim (God) is the generic name for “God” just as ho theos is in Greek.  God also reveals Himself by other names which define relationships (Yahweh, which means “Lord,” and “Father God,” by which we mean that the One who is God is also the One who, in Christ, is our Heavenly Father).”

“El Gibbor” means Mighty One.

“Since Moses used a plural noun (Elohim) with a singular verb (bara), this is an indication of the Trinitarian nature of God. Biblical revelation tends to move from the seminal to the substantive, to move progressively into fuller and fuller light on a subject.  ‘The New Testament is in the Old somewhat concealed; the Old is in the New more fully revealed.’” 

“The phrase used for the ‘heavens and the earth’ is a Hebrew term that means the whole cosmos of Creation.”

“The Hebrew term for ‘earth’ means the land portion of our globe.”

“The Hebrew terms tohu and bohu mean ‘formless and void.’”

“The Latin phrase ex nihilo means ‘out of nothing.’”

“The Hebrew word for spirit or Holy Spirit is ruach.”