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Genesis 1 Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

The Beginning of the World

God created the sky and the earth. At first, the earth was completely empty. There was nothing on the earth. Darkness covered the ocean, and God’s Spirit moved over[a] the water.

The First Day—Light

Then God said, “Let there be light!” And light began to shine.[b] He saw the light, and he knew that it was good. Then he separated the light from the darkness. God named the light “day,” and he named the darkness “night.”

There was evening, and then there was morning. This was the first day.

The Second Day—Sky

Then God said, “Let there be a space[c] to separate the water into two parts!” So God made the space and separated the water. Some of the water was above it, and some of the water was below it. God named that space “sky.” There was evening, and then there was morning. This was the second day.

The Third Day—Dry Land and Plants

Then God said, “Let the water under the sky be gathered together so that the dry land will appear.” And it happened. 10 God named the dry land “earth,” and he named the water that was gathered together “seas.” And God saw that this was good.

11 Then God said, “Let the earth grow grass, plants that make grain, and fruit trees. The fruit trees will make fruit with seeds in it. And each plant will make its own kind of seed. Let these plants grow on the earth.” And it happened. 12 The earth grew grass and plants that made grain. And it grew trees that made fruit with seeds in it. Every plant made its own kind of seeds. And God saw that this was good.

13 There was evening, and then there was morning. This was the third day.

The Fourth Day—Sun, Moon, and Stars

14 Then God said, “Let there be lights in the sky. These lights will separate the days from the nights. They will be used for signs to show when special meetings[d] begin and to show the days and years. 15 They will be in the sky to shine light on the earth.” And it happened.

16 So God made the two large lights. He made the larger light to rule during the day and the smaller light to rule during the night. He also made the stars. 17 God put these lights in the sky to shine on the earth. 18 He put them in the sky to rule over the day and over the night. They separated the light from the darkness. And God saw that this was good.

19 There was evening, and then there was morning. This was the fourth day.

The Fifth Day—Fish and Birds

20 Then God said, “Let the water be filled with many living things, and let there be birds to fly in the air over the earth.” 21 So God created the large sea animals.[e] He created all the many living things in the sea and every kind of bird that flies in the air. And God saw that this was good.

22 God blessed all the living things in the sea and told them to have many babies and fill the seas. And he blessed the birds on land and told them to have many more babies.

23 There was evening, and then there was morning. This was the fifth day.

The Sixth Day—Land Animals and People

24 Then God said, “Let the earth produce many kinds of living things. Let there be many different kinds of animals. Let there be large animals and small crawling animals of every kind. And let all these animals produce more animals.” And all these things happened.

25 So God made every kind of animal. He made the wild animals, the tame animals, and all the small crawling things. And God saw that this was good.

26 Then God said, “Now let’s make humans[f] who will be like us.[g] They will rule over all the fish in the sea and the birds in the air. They will rule over all the large animals and all the little things that crawl on the earth.”

27 So God created humans in his own image. He created them to be like himself.[h] He created them male and female. 28 God blessed them and said to them, “Have many children. Fill the earth and take control of it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the air. Rule over every living thing that moves on the earth.”

29 God said, “I am giving you all the grain bearing plants and all the fruit trees. These trees make fruit with seeds in it. This grain and fruit will be your food. 30 And I am giving all the green plants to the animals. These green plants will be their food. Every animal on earth, every bird in the air, and all the little things that crawl on the earth will eat that food.” And all these things happened.

31 God looked at everything he had made. And he saw that everything was very good.

There was evening, and then there was morning. This was the sixth day.

Footnotes:

  1. Genesis 1:2 moved over The Hebrew word means “to fly over” or “to swoop down,” like a bird flying over its nest to protect its babies.
  2. Genesis 1:3 Or “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. While the earth had no special shape, and darkness covered the ocean, and God’s Spirit hovered over the water, God said, ‘Let there be light,’ and there was light.” Or “When God began to create the sky and the earth, while the earth was completely empty, and darkness covered the ocean, and a powerful wind blew over the water, God said, ‘Let there be light,’ and there was light.”
  3. Genesis 1:6 space Or “firmament.” The Hebrew word can refer to a piece of metal that has been hammered into the shape of a bowl.
  4. Genesis 1:14 special meetings The Israelites used the sun and moon to decide when the months and years began. Many Israelite festivals and special meetings began at the time of the new moon or full moon.
  5. Genesis 1:21 large sea animals Or “sea monsters.”
  6. Genesis 1:26 humans The Hebrew word means “man,” “people,” or the name “Adam.” It is like the word meaning “earth” or “red clay.”
  7. Genesis 1:26 Now let’s make … like us Or “Now let’s make humans in our image and in our likeness.”
  8. Genesis 1:27 So God created humans … himself Or “So God created them in his image. In the image of God he created them.” Compare Gen. 5:1, 3.
Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Copyright © 2006 by Bible League International

Genesis 1 New International Version (NIV)

The Beginning

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.

And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day.

And God said, “Let there be a vault between the waters to separate water from water.” So God made the vault and separated the water under the vault from the water above it. And it was so. God called the vault “sky.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the second day.

And God said, “Let the water under the sky be gathered to one place, and let dry ground appear.” And it was so. 10 God called the dry ground “land,” and the gathered waters he called “seas.” And God saw that it was good.

11 Then God said, “Let the land produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds.” And it was so. 12 The land produced vegetation: plants bearing seed according to their kinds and trees bearing fruit with seed in it according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good. 13 And there was evening, and there was morning—the third day.

14 And God said, “Let there be lights in the vault of the sky to separate the day from the night, and let them serve as signs to mark sacred times, and days and years, 15 and let them be lights in the vault of the sky to give light on the earth.” And it was so. 16 God made two great lights—the greater light to govern the day and the lesser light to govern the night. He also made the stars. 17 God set them in the vault of the sky to give light on the earth, 18 to govern the day and the night, and to separate light from darkness. And God saw that it was good. 19 And there was evening, and there was morning—the fourth day.

20 And God said, “Let the water teem with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the vault of the sky.” 21 So God created the great creatures of the sea and every living thing with which the water teems and that moves about in it, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. 22 God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the water in the seas, and let the birds increase on the earth.” 23 And there was evening, and there was morning—the fifth day.

24 And God said, “Let the land produce living creatures according to their kinds: the livestock, the creatures that move along the ground, and the wild animals, each according to its kind.” And it was so. 25 God made the wild animals according to their kinds, the livestock according to their kinds, and all the creatures that move along the ground according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good.

26 Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals,[a] and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”

27 So God created mankind in his own image,
    in the image of God he created them;
    male and female he created them.

28 God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.

29 Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. 30 And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds in the sky and all the creatures that move along the ground—everything that has the breath of life in it—I give every green plant for food.” And it was so.

31 God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning—the sixth day.

Footnotes:

  1. Genesis 1:26 Probable reading of the original Hebrew text (see Syriac); Masoretic Text the earth
New International Version (NIV)

Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica

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