Q&A

Chaotic Earth on Booth’s Chart | Q&A


Note: This question and the answer reference Booth’s Chart; sometimes called the “Eternity to Eternity Chart.” Images of the chart are available here.

Question:

Why does the chart have different forms of earth, like original earth, chaotic earth and so on? Are there any details given in the scripture about the original earth? Were there any living beings when He first created the original earth? Reference verses please if there are any?

Answer:

"Eternity to Eternity" chart

The arc on the left of the chart enclosing the blue area represents eternity past. There is a similar arc on the right side of the chart (not shown here). Between these two arcs, time, as we know it, is depicted. The circle on the top of the figure shown here represents the initial creation described in Genesis 1:1. Hebrews 11:3 tells us that the things which we see were not created from things that appear. The present material universe was created ex nihilo, or “out of nothing,” by the word of God. He spoke and it came into being from nothing. Thus far, this is consistent with modern scientific thought which proposes that all matter, energy, space, and time came into being at a singularity. So, the top circle represents the universe resulting from this initial creative act. There is no scripture that establishes the timing of the formation of the primordial earth.

The circle labeled “chaotic”[1] refers to the condition described in Genesis 1:2 and Isaiah 45:18. It is the condition out of which God forms the habitable world. This formation process is described in Genesis 2:3–3:3 and is illustrated by the lines emanating from this circle. It is important to notice the distinction between Genesis 1:1 and Genesis 1:3 given by verse 2. In our present day, many are trying to ignore the great gulf between that which is merely material and a product of natural law operating on that material, and the conditions which are required for life. Verse 2 establishes that the inert material creation, no matter how vast and complex (think of the structure of atoms and stars) is completely inadequate to account for life. Whatever natural processes were initialized in Genesis 1:1 to bring about the material world (i.e., the world studied by physicists and chemists) ended in the condition described in Genesis 1:2. Life requires a series of new creative works of God described in Genesis 1:3–31 to provide a “living planet”—one which can be a home for plants, animals, and finally man. Consequently, the creation of man completes the work of creation. On the seventh day, God rested which emphasizes the completion of all His creative work.

The final circle labeled “Eden” represents the events of Genesis 2:4 through Genesis 3. This circle represents the elaboration of man’s relationships to Creation and to God found in Genesis 2, along with the temptation and fall.

It is possible that angels were created before the creation of Genesis 1:1. This is suggested by Job 38:4–7. Other than this passage, I do not know of any scripture that indicates when the angels were created.


[1] “Chaotic” is an alternate meaning of the Hebrew word tohu (Strong’s #8414), translated “without form” in Genesis 1:2 and Isaiah 45:18.

Roy Touzeau

Roy Touzeau is a regular teacher at Grace and Truth Gathering in Portland, Oregon where he has been faithfully attending since 1981. He was instrumental in founding Principles in Focus, an annual biblically focused retreat for young people. Roy and his wife Pamela have been married for forty-nine years and enjoy visiting their children and grandchildren and studying God’s creation using Roy’s eight-inch telescope.

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