Gap Theory

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The gap theory is the idea that there is a gap in time between Genesis 1:1 in Genesis 1:2. The gap lasted for millions of years and accounts for the dinosaurs. This theory was begun by a Scottish minister named Chalmers in 1814.

  • Gen. 1:1, "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth."
  • Gen. 1:2, "And the earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep; and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters."

Some say that the fall of Satan occurred between these two verses and that the fall resulted in the earth being formless and void, i.e., the cataclysm. The theory states that Gen. 1:28 gives a hint to this when it says, "And God blessed them; and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”  The KJV uses the word "replenish" instead of the word "fill," and it is from this word that the theory is said to be validated. The theory is that there must have been a destruction of the world that needed to be replenished.

The word 'replenish' is mawlay and it means  "to fill, be full, fullness, abundance (participle), to be full, be accomplished, be ended, to consecrate, fill the hand, to satisfy, to fulfil, accomplish, complete, etc.1

  • 1. Enhanced Strong’s Lexicon, (Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.), 1995.

About The Author

Matt Slick is the President and Founder of the Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry.