In Gen 1:14-19 the Torah says that Hashem has set the lights in the sky for several reasons. First - to separate the day from the night. Second - to serve as signs for the times, days, and years. In other words to display stable predictable patterns to help us track time. And of course, Third - they were to shine, to give light to the earth. That is the primary purpose of lights we are told about in Genesis 1.
The creation story always puzzles people who try to read it as a straightforward sequential, step-by-step account of what actually happened. God made light on the very first day – “let there be light”, remember? But then he made the meorot, the lights in the sky, the sun, the moon, and the stars on the fourth day. Where did that light come from before the luminaries were around? That’s a puzzle.
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