Let’s read Genesis 1:27-28, “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.”  This was the sixth day of creation.

It was on the fifth day of creation that the fish, and then the birds were created.  Genesis 1:20-21 says, “And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven. And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good.”  It was on the sixth day of creation that God created the earthly animals.  We read in verse 24, “And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so.”

The order of creation is: the sea creatures and flying animals were created on the fifth day, while the earthly animals and man were created on the sixth day.  One phrase that has confused many is what we find in verse 28, “Be fruitful, and multiply, and REPLENISH the earth.”  This gives the thought that the Lord wanted to restore population to the earth.  This is not the meaning of this phrase at all.  The Hebrew word for replenish is ‘maw-lay’ which literally means ‘to fill.’  In fact, most translations use the word ‘fill’ instead of ‘replenish’ which is a more accurate translation.

It is in the order of creation that Adam is told to subdue God’s creation.  God is a god of order as is evidenced by the words of 1 Corinthians 14:40, “Let all things be done decently and in order.”  Man was given dominion over all of God’s creation, even those places that man could not reach at that time…the sea and the air.  While man still has dominion over all the creatures of God’s creation, sin has come in and that dominion is unsteady.  In their own elements, we are not able to exercise dominion.  We cannot swim in the sea and dominate, we cannot fly in the sky and dominate, and we cannot walk through woods, jungles, and deserts and rule over the animals.

However, the day is coming when, through virtue of the Lord’s death on the cross, all things will be put back in proper order.  When the Lord Jesus comes to establish His kingdom on the earth for 1000 years, all things will be orderly.  We read in Isaiah 11:6-8, “The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them. And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice’ den.”  The day is coming when the Lord will take full dominion over all His creation and creatures.  Have you given Him dominion over your life?  Have you, through faith in the Lord Jesus, given Him control of your life and eternity?  Have you believed in Him and received His gift of eternal life?  (212.10)