Gen. 1:9-10 "And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so. (10) And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that it was good." Here God gathers the water together and the dry land appears. This COULD be the formation of mountains, but there is a lot of land area that is not mountainous. God names the dry land earth and he names the gathered waters seas. Rev. 21:1 tells us that in the new creation there will be no more sea. Seas separate land masses and in the new creation there will be no need for separation. I also believe that it will be a perfect creation without a place called hell at its center.
"And God saw that it was good." Again God is looking at what he has done, and he approves.
The events of the third day were not yet completed. Gen 1:11-13 says, "And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so. 12 And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good. 13 And the evening and the morning were the third day."
Notice the verse does not say Ďand God created,í it says "let the earth bring forth." From this simple statement we learn that the seed was already present in the earth. The earlier creation had been judged and destroyed, but the seeds of plant life from that earlier time were still present in the soil.
The verse also states that the earth would bring forth herb yielding seed. Here God establishes that the life that he brought forth would be able to perpetuate itself. He would not need to create new seeds or plants each season because the plants he created bore seed with which they could reproduce themselves. In like manner, the trees would yield fruit whose seed was in itself after his kind. We have all encountered cherry pits, apple seeds and peach pits. The trees that produced these fruits are the same as the trees that grew in Gen. 1. But we have also enjoyed seedless oranges which are grown on trees different than those that were present in Gen. 1. The trees that produce seedless fruit are grown from hybrid seeds, seeds that have been altered by man to produce fruit without seeds. ALL of the plant life that God caused to grow bore fruit with seed in itself, and later this is going to be critical.
There is also order and design in the actual seed. No one has ever planted a cherry pit and then had a peach tree grow from the seed. This is another principal established in creation. Gal 6:7-8 says, "Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting." Those who sow homosexuality are going to reap AIDS or other judgment; those who sow premarital sex are going to reap STDs or fatherless children; those who sow drunkenness are going to reap causing the death of others, loss of driving privileges and everything that comes from not being in control of your own faculties.
This also has a spiritual application. Matt 7:15-20 says "Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them."
Rom. 1:19-20 teaches that God is made known to every man in the things that he created, therefore those who reject God and his provision (Jesus Christ) are without excuse before God - both now and on judgment day. "Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse."
It is order and design that God has placed in creation that reveals him to man. The tree is not God - the tree was created by God - God is greater than his creation.
In the book Number in Scripture, E.W. Bullinger said this: "If we notice how the leaves grow upon the stem of a plant, not only is law seen in classifying their nature and character, but number is observed in their arrangement and disposition. Some are placed alternately, some opposite, while others are arranged spirally. But in each case all is in perfect order. After a certain number of leaves one will come immediately over and in the same line with the first: Ė In the apple it is the fifth leaf, in the oak it is the fourth, in the peach, etc., it is the sixth..." (Number in Scripture, pg. 8; E.W. Bullinger, Kregel Publications, original publication 1894)
If the reader is inclined to do something just for fun, visit this web link to see an interesting page about Fibonacci numbers, i.e. the repeating patterns found in the world around us that we see and experience everyday.
Another interesting fact of nature is the Jack Pine produces cones whose seeds are released only after a fire. We see in this that God has created and activated his own plan for reforestation after forest fire.
So we see that God has manifested himself in creation by creating things that (on their own) do not deviate from the way he created them. Man is to look at creation and recognize the hand of the great designer, which is meant to lead him to recognize that someone exists who is greater than him and to seek this designer. Instead, many "changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen." (Rom 1:25)
Other than that plant life that man has altered, plants and trees today still grow, bear seeds and reproduce themselves exactly the way they were created to do when they were created. This is plant life on earth - itís different in heaven. Rev 22:2 says, "In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations."
The verse tells us, "and God saw that it was good." God again approves what he has brought forth, and what he brought forth was plant life that bore fruit with seed in it with which it would reproduce itself. This does not mean that seedless oranges or other hybrid fruit and vegetables are sinful, but it does mean that plant life can be altered to grow fruit other than the way God created the fruit.
The passage closes with "And the evening and the morning were the third day."