Article: Genesis 1:28 Replenish or Fill? by Will Kinney

From Textus Receptus

Jump to: navigation, search

Genesis 1:28 - Replenish or Fill?

In Genesis chapter one verse 28 there is a word that is frequently attacked in the King James Holy Bible. God told Adam and Eve:

"Be fruitful, and multiply, and REPLENISH the earth, and subdue it."

Bible agnostics (i.e. they don't know which readings are right and they invariably do not believe that ANY Bible in ANY language is the complete, inspired and 100% true words of God) like to criticize the King James Bible for saying "replenish the earth", thinking that this expression implies that there was a previous race of men or even angels on the earth before Adam was created, in spite of the fact that Adam is called "the first man" in 1 Corinthians 15:45 and Jesus said:

"Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife...?" (Matthew 19:4.)


"But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female" (Mark 10:6).

There were no races of men or angels living on the earth before Adam.


Merrian Webster Online Dictionary

If one would just take the time to look in any dictionary like Webster's Seventh New Collegiate Dictionary they would learn that the first definition of the word "replenish" is "to fill with persons or animals, to stock". The second definition is "to fill again". Adam was simply being told to fill or stock the earth with people, not to fill it again. A little knowledge about our own English language will go a long way in clearing up many of these alleged "errors" in the Book of books.

Main Entry: re·plen·ish
Pronunciation: ri-'ple-nish
Function: verb
Etymology: Middle English replenisshen, from Middle French repleniss-, stem of replenir to fill, from Old French, from re- + plein full, from Latin plenus -- more at FULL
transitive senses
1 a : to fill with persons or animals : STOCK b archaic : to supply fully : PERFECT c : to fill with inspiration or power : NOURISH
2 a : to fill or build up again <replenished his glass> b : to make good : REPLACE
intransitive senses : to become full : fill up again

Other Bibles

"Replenish" is also the reading found in the Bishop's Bible 1568, the Douay-Rheims Bible of 1609, Webster's 1833 translation, the Revised Version 1881, the American Standard Version of 1901, both the 1917 Jewish Publication Society and 1936 Hebrew Publishing Company, New York, Hebrew-English translations, the 1994 KJV 21st Century and the 1998 Third Millenium bible.


John Calvin and others used replenish
John Calvin and others used replenish

John Calvin

John Calvin translates the Hebrew Scriptures into Latin saying:

“dixitque ad eos Deus, Crescite, et multiplicate vos, et REPLETE terram, et subjicite eam” - ‘And God said, Be fruitful, and multiply, and REPLENISH the earth, and subdue it.”

Then his commentary reads:

“Here Moses would simply declare that Adam with his wife was formed for the production of offspring, in order that men might REPLENISH the earth.”

As you read on it is obvious that Calvin was not talking about the REpopulation of the earth, but the initial filling or stocking it with people.

Matthew Henry

Matthew Henry likewise comments on Genesis 1:28 saying:

God, having made them capable of transmitting the nature they had received, said to them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and REPLENISH the earth. Here he gave them, 1. A large inheritance: REPLENISH the earth; it is this that is bestowed upon the children of men.”

John Wesley

John Wesley comments on Genesis 1:28 -

“He created him male and female, Adam and Eve: Adam first out of earth, and Eve out of his side. God made but one male and one female, that all the nations of men might know themselves to be made of one blood, descendants, from one common stock, and might thereby be induced to love one another. God having made them capable of transmitting the nature they had received, said to them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and REPLENISH the earth - Here he gave them, 1. A large inheritance; REPLENISH the earth, in which God has set man to be the servant of his providence, in the government of the inferior creatures, and as it were the intelligence of this orb.”

John Gill

John Gill makes no attempt to “correct” the King James Bible’s reading of “replenish” but simply expounds the Scripture fully understanding the meaning of the English word “replenish”. He comments:

and God said unto them, be fruitful, and multiply, and REPLENISH the earth:... it is a direction and an advice to what was proper and convenient for the increase of mankind, and for THE FILLING OF THE EARTH with inhabitants.”

Replenish an Error?

Most modern versions say "to fill" which is fine, but the KJB is not in error. Words have more than one limited meaning. People like to pick out a little word like this in the KJB, and on the basis of their limited understanding of the English language, reject or criticize the King James Bible as being the inspired and infallible words of God and embrace instead a false modern version that contains errors, false doctrines and omits thousands of God's inspired words. This is the logic of unbelief.

Even if we use the word "fill", this word too can mean to "refill" or to "fill again". When you last went to the gas station to "fill" your tank, did you buy a brand new gas tank each time, or did you refill the old one? How about when you ate a meal and "filled" your stomach? Don't you mean you "refilled" it?

In Genesis we see that God told Adam and Noah to "replenish" the earth. In both cases, God was merely telling them to stock it or fill it with people.

For a well done and more exhaustive study on this verse and the meaning of "replenish the earth" by John Hinton, Ph.D. of Bible Restoration Ministry see this article at the KJV Asia site:

Will Kinney

End of article

See Also

External Links

Other Artilces by Will Kinney in the Textus Receptus database ~

Old Testament

Genesis Genesis 1:28 Replenish or Fill? - Genesis 6:6 Can God repent? - Genesis 22:1 Did God "Tempt" Abraham? Exodus Exodus 20:13 Thou Shalt Not KILL - Exodus - the Israelites "borrowed" of the Egyptians Numbers Numbers 22 Why was God Angry with Balaam? Job Bible Babel in Job - a comparative study 1 Samuel 1 Samuel 13:21 "a file" a "pim" or "two-thirds of a shekel"? 2 Samuel 2 Samuel 21:8 Michal or Merab? - 2 Samuel 21:19 Who Killed Goliath? 1 Kings 1 Kings 20:38 ashes upon his face - 1 Kings 22:38 "washed his armour" or "while the harlots bathed" NKJV Nonsense Psalms Psalm 8:5 Lower than the Angels, or a little lower than God? - Answering Doug Kutilek's anti-Preservation in Psalm 12 - Psalm 74:8 the synagogues of God; Psalm 77:2 my sore ran in the night - Psalms 1 How Different the Versions! - Psalms 2 How Different the Versions! - Psalms 3 How Different the Versions! - Psalms 4 How Different the Versions! - Psalms 5 How Different the Versions! Proverbs NKJV Bible Babel in Proverbs - Bible Babel in Proverbs Isaiah Isaiah - a Comparative Study - Does God Create Evil? Isaiah 45:7 Jeremiah Jeremiah 8:8 the pen of the scribes is in vain - Jeremiah 27:1 Jehoiakim or Zedekiah? - Ezekiel Ezekiel 29:7 Hebrew, Greek or Syriac? Hosea Hosea - a Comparative Study

New Testament

Did Jesus Tell Them to Take a Staff or Not? Matthew Is Matthew 23:14 Scripture or not? - Matthew 27:44 cast in teeth Mark Gospel of Mark - a Modern Version Mix-up Luke Is "cousin" wrong in Luke 1:36 - Luke 17:36 Is it inspired Scripture or not? John John 1:18 the only begotten Son Acts Act 3:19 times of refreshing; 7:20 Moses was exceeding fair - Acts 9:5-7 hear the voice; 7:20 exceeding fair - Acts 5:30 slew and hanged; 19:20 word of GOD - Acts 13:33 this day have I begotten thee - Acts 19:9 DIVERS were hardened, and believed not - Acts 19:35 Diana or Artemis? Jupiter, Zeus or Heaven? - The So-called "Science" of Textual Criticism. Science or Hocus-Pocus? Gospels through Acts Romans James White discussing Romans 6:17 Philippians Textual Studies in Philippians 2 Timothy 2 Timothy 3:16 Inspiration of God or God Breathed? Hebrews The Book of Hebrews - a Comparative Study 1 Peter 1 Peter - Shifting Sands of Scholarship 1 John And These Three Are One Article defending the inclusion of 1 John 5:7. - 1 John 5:7 These three are one Jude The Book of Jude - James White's "inferior" texts Revelations Revelation 13 Confusion - Vials or Bowls in the book of Revelation - Rev.16:5 and SHALT BE; 5:8-10 redeemed US - Revelation 17:8 "the beast that was, and is not, and YET IS" - Acts 28:13 We Fetched a Compass; 1 Tim5:4 Nephews - Matthew 24:3; Hebrews 9:26 End of World or Age?

Modern Versions

Bible Babel 1 - Bible Babel 2 - Bible Babel 3 - Bible Babel 4 - The Oldest and Best Manuscripts? - Every Man for Himself Bible Versions - the HCSB, NET, ESV, TNIV, NKJV - The Inerrancy of Scripture - are you a Bible believer or a Bible agnostic? - True Bible? - Modern Versions Teach Racism - Modern Versions Teach Pride as a Virtue - Do Ghosts Exist? Modern Versions say Yes ESV The English Standard Version 2001 NASB The Ever Changing NASB's NKJV NKJV Word Changes - When the NKJV departs from the TR - The New KJV is a Hack Job Translation - NKJV vs KJB Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah - Is the NKJV the same as the KJB? - Don't go on Safari with a New KJV Translator - The NKJV is a Poor Substitute for the True Bible - NKJV vs KJB Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah - NKJV Bible Babel in Proverbs

King James Word Definitions

Lucifer - Jehovah - Unicorns - Is the word "Easter" an error in the King James Bible? - Are the words "CHURCH" and 'BISHOP' wrong? - Hell and Damnation in the King James Bible - "By and by" versus "the-by-and-by" - Servants or Slaves? - Is "charity" an error in the KJB? - The Grace of God Destroyed - "Would to God" - Another alleged 'error' bites the dustIs "bottles" an inaccurate word in the King James Bible?

King James Bible

Is King James onlyism Scriptural? - Does the KJB only position "blow up"? - What About Those Printing Errors in 1611? - Does the King James Bible depart from the Hebrew Texts? - Why do you King James Bible onlyies Attack the word of God? - The Historic Confessions support the KJB position - Can a Translation be Inspired? - The Old Latin versions and the KJB


NO LXX Part 1 - NO LXX - the Fictitious Use of Septuagint

Dead Sea Scrolls

The Dead Sea Scrolls Fiasco

Hebrew Text

The NIV, NASB reject the Hebrew Texts - NIV, NASB reject Hebrew texts Part 2 - How to Destroy Messianic Prophecies

Greek Text

"The Greek" and Hebrew Games

Gender Inclusive Versions

Gender Inclusive Versions Dealing with the TNIV

Answering Critics

E mail exchange with Bible Agnostic Doug Kutilek - John MacArthur - Pastor with NO Infallible Bible - A Bible Believer's Response to James Price's book King James Onlyism - a New Sect - A King James Bible Believer's Response to Rick Norris' book 'The Unbound Scriptures' - 17 Parts

Part 1 - The "logical" Premise of Mr. Norris

Part 2 - Those Dreadful Archaic Words

Part 3 - Imperfect men, Perfect Bible

Part 4 - Revision

Part 5 - Printing Errors and Spelling

Part 6 - Inspiration and Inerrancy

Part 7 - Alleged Errors in the King James Bible

Part 8 - Let Me Count The Ways

Part 9 - Beasts or Living Creatures?

Part 10 - Mules or Hot Springs?

Part 11 - "Digged down a wall" or "hamstrung an ox"?

Part 12 - Steel, brass, copper, bronze - Paper or Plastic?

Part 13 - The Usual Suspects

Part 14 - The Preservation of the words of God

Part 15 - KJB Only versus Latin Vulgate Only Argument

Part 16 - Where Was the Word of God Before 1611?

Part 17 - Final Thoughts

Personal tools