Genesis 1: 9-13
9 And God said, g“Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together into one place, and let the dry land appear.” And it was so. 10 God called the dry land Earth, and the waters that were gathered together he called Seas. And God saw that it was good.
11 And God said, h“Let the earth sprout vegetation, plants yielding seed, and fruit trees bearing fruit in which is their seed, each according to its kind, on the earth.” And it was so. 12 The earth brought forth vegetation, plants yielding seed according to their own kinds, and trees bearing fruit in which is their seed, each according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. 13 And there was evening and there was morning, the third day.
Relying on our work from the study of the 2nd Day of Creation, God gathered the mayim (water) below the shamayim (sky.) As a result, we must conclude that prior to this event, the entire earth was covered by water. Depending on our interpretation from the 2nd day of creation, the atmosphere may also have been encircled by oceans of water.
“Earth” as it is translated in verse 10 comes from the following: אֶרֶץ ʼerets, eh’-rets; from an unused root probably meaning to be firm; the earth (at large, or partitively a land):—× common, country, earth, field, ground, land, × natins, way, + wilderness, world.
“Seas” as it is translated in verse 10 comes from the following: יָם yâm, yawm; from an unused root meaning to roar; a sea (as breaking in noisy surf) or large body of water; specifically (with the article), the Mediterranean Sea; sometimes a large river, or an artifical basin; locally, the west, or (rarely) the south:—sea (× -faring man, (-shore)), south, west (-ern, side, -ward).
“Vegetation” as it is translated in verse 11 comes from the following: דֶּשֶׁא desheʼ, deh’-sheh; from H1876; a sprout; by analogy, grass:—(tender) grass, green, (tender) herb.
There is not much controversy that I am aware of regarding translation of the third day of creation. But that does not mean that the 3rd day of creation avoids controversy. If you are paying close attention, then you may have noticed that God created vegetation before he created the sun. This mystery is deepened by the fact that God created “light” prior to creating the sun.
Did the “light” from chapter 1 verse 3 photosynthesize plant-life until day 4? Did something else happen?
Something else to consider as we head into Creation Day #4 – in this creation account, is our planet older than the sun in our solar system? We will dig into what feels like several incongruities in the Part 7 of this study.