We established at our beginning of the study of Genesis that the bible is God’s Word put in place as the means that God reveals Himself to us so that we can have a right relationship with Him, one of love, respect, worship and praise, comfort, peace and joy, eternally.
One of the things I thought about this week, that our teaching leader mentioned in his lecture, was the point that the development of my relationship with God is different than developing any other relationship on this earth. Normally, when we are entering into a new relationship, whether work, friend, neighbor, romantic, or casual, there is an gradual revealing that occurs as each party learns about the other and each party opens up to tell about themselves. But with God, He already knows everything there is to know about us and He has put everything about Him down in writing. The depth of my relationship with God is directly tied to my dedication in increasing my knowledge of Him and moving closer to His unmoving rock of salvation.
In Genesis 1, we see this. Last week we looked at this chapter and focused on better understanding “who” God is. This week our focus shifts to “what” God did: He created everything.
So, again, let’s start at the beginning where God is in the beginning. God’s first action into his new creation is to speak. He said let there be light and there was light. We could camp out right here and discuss the awesome power of God’s word. We could talk about this intrinsic and everlasting light that goes on like a ray coming from the Trinity to shine for ever more. And, with the richness of Genesis, if you are ever struggling for something to ponder and pray, pick any one verse in Genesis 1 and use it to see God’s glory and power.
God first divides the waters below and above and then He gathers the sea. I love this visual image of how God’s voice could stretch out like arms across a table and draw in the waters of the sea to make dry ground. And then God brings life to the planet.
He brings vegetation, plants, trees, to grow and bear fruit, each according to their kind. And it was good.
He then speaks the sun, moon and stars into existence. These are the vessels that hold the light that He created on day 1.
When I think of all of this, it reminds me of how parents-to-be prepare the nursery and their home for an expectant baby to arrive. They paint the room, they prepare the furniture and bedding, they even put in a night light. How much more so our heavenly Father, and the moon is a pretty amazing nightlight!
In your language about the nursery God prepared for us, do your comments express gratefulness or do they convey an attitude of a whiny child complaining about the heat or cold? Do you reach out to your heavenly Father for comfort and joy or are you busy throwing a temper tantrum?
But let’s go a little deeper in looking at some of the days of creation in this chapter. God didn’t just create these things but He actually gave them purpose. Look at vs 11 and 12. God didn’t just make plants, but he made plants to bear seeds and fruit. In 14 and 15 He didn’t just make the lights in the sky, but He made them to be signs to mark sacred times and days and years. In 20-23 He made creatures of the sea and sky and specifically blessed them and commanded them to be fruitful and increase in number and fill the earth, each according to its kind. Same for the land animals, each according to its kind.
God created not only objects, but He endowed them with both purpose and order. That word “according” is an interesting one. It reminds me of “a chord”, a musical harmony. When man thinks of nature, particularly its origins, our minds see chaos and battle, survival of the fittest, struggle for life. But in God’s design there is harmony, order and purpose.
In your day, are you striving to find God’s harmony, order and purpose or are you viewing it as a fight, dog-eat-dog battle? How does your approach influence your outcome? If all creation is a harmonious melody that sings praise to Him, are you putting in practice time for the musical every day? As a challenge, look at the ways that God uses animals throughout the scriptures to reveal Himself to mankind (colt for palm sunday, dove, the fish for the multitudes, Jonah’s whale, Balaam’s donkey, just to name a few.) They are more prevalent than we realize when we look for them.
Then, the 6th day. God, the trinity, made man in His image, in His likeness. God made us male and female. He provided for us with food to eat and He gave us purpose and direction, one to preserve and maintain order. He delegated rule to us as only a ruler could do. He gave plants and fruit to us as only the owner of the fields of harvest could do.
Interesting that God gives us two specific tasks. The first shows our kinship with all other living creatures of the earth, to be fruitful and increase in number, fill the earth. The second shows our kinship with the Almighty, to subdue the earth and rule over every living creature. And, as we will study in the weeks to come, how we have done pretty good at the first directive, but almost immediately failed in the second when we let the ways of the earth and the temptations present rule over us instead of the other way around.
But, we will also learn that the game isn’t over. Like a reset button in a video game, those of us who have accepted the saving work of Jesus Christ have the ability to start over. When we confess our sins, God is faithful and just and He will forgive our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. Just like a reset button, we get a “do over” button through confession to God that lets us start executing our order, harmony and purpose all over again. And each time we stumble and fall, His spirit helps move in us and with us, transforming us back into His image and likeness until the day we stand before Him for all eternity in the harmony and unity of heaven.