Genesis 1:28

From Theonomy Wiki
Genesis 1

Law Analysis overview

28 God blessed them. God said to them, “Be fruitful, multiply, fill the earth, and subdue it. Have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the sky, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” Genesis 1:28WEB


The Command

This passage contains a positive command, framed as a blessing, directed toward mankind: "Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the heavens, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.".

This command is a restatement of the command in Genesis 1:26 and bears similarities to the blessing in Genesis 1:22.


This command is understood to be a part of the Moral Law. It is part of a group of passages which demonstrate the power of God, and the Creator-Creation Distinction.

This command pertains to the Created Order. It establishes the authority of mankind to exercise dominion over the earth. It also affects our understanding of Dominion. It affects an understanding of Biblical Sexuality and the Family, its foremost purpose being to multiply and replenish the earth. It affects an understanding of Work, being a significant part of mans original purpose, to tend the garden and subdue the whole earth. This command also implicitly gives the Authority to individuals and families to do anything lawful to carry out this purpose. This is a very broad grant of authority which is later modified and limited by God's other commands.


This command is abiding in function; Man continues to produce offspring, and continues to exercise dominion over all creation.


This command has direct relevance to an understanding of the following topics:

Notes on Interpretation/Application