1:16 two great lights. The sun and moon, principal deities in ancient Near Eastern pagan pantheons, are not even named, effectively demoting them and emphasizing that they serve mankind according to God’s design.
rule. The moving forms of the second triad of days seem to rule over the spheres that house and shelter them (1:3–31 note): the luminaries over the day and night (Ps. 136:7–9), the birds and fish over the sky and sea respectively, and the animals over the land and its vegetation with man over both.
the stars. Pagans often credited the stars (which were numbered among their gods) with controlling human destiny. Here they are mentioned almost in passing.