Saturday, August 25, 2018

In The Beginning, God





In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. 
(Genesis 1:1)









When we come to understand and realize that God is not a myth nor a fairy tale, it is easy to understand that He and He alone is the cause of the heavens and the earth.  Many people have a limited view of the world. They are concerned only about their own city, or nation. They do not recognize that the area where they live is only a small part of a great planet called "earth." They do not know about the special plan of God which includes the entire world, people of all races, cultures, and languages.

In every culture there are different beliefs about the creation of the world. People have always felt the need to explain how things came to be and from where man came. People in different nations and cultures have developed their own stories or "myths" to explain creation. The various myths about creation have developed for two reasons:

            1.     Because people did not have access to the true facts about creation or. . .
            2.    Because they chose not to believe the true account of creation when they heard or 
                    read about it.

The true account of the creation of the world is recorded in the Bible. The Bible summarizes  the beginning of creation it it's very first scripture:  

In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. (Genesis 1:1)

The God of whom this verse speaks is the one true God. 

Thus saith the Lord the King of Israel, and his redeemer the Lord of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and beside me there is no God.  Isaiah 44:6

The Bible is the written record of the acts and words of God. When we speak of developing a "Biblical worldview", it means we base our understanding of the world by what is revealed by God in His written Word, the Bible.

Apostle Paul, when speaking in Athens, made it abundantly clear that of all the many gods they idolized, the one that they had named as the 'unknown god' was indeed the one true God.

God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men's hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things
(Acts 17:24-25)

There are many reasons why people do not accept the true creation:

Ø  Unbelief  

Some people choose not to believe the facts of creation presented in the Bible because it means they must acknowledge there is a God. If they accept the fact there is a God, then they must acknowledge His sovereign rule over them. They must also believe His Word and do something about their ungodly lifestyle. Because some people people do not want to change their way of life, they choose to deny the Biblical account of creation and the existence of God.  

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:   Romans 1:19-20

Ø  Scientific Theories  

Some people claim the Biblical account of creation does not agree with the facts discovered by scientists who study the earth. It is true the Bible does not agree with the theories of some scientists. But a theory is a personal belief or a guess as to how something happened. It is not a proven fact. In every challenge raised by scientists, the facts discovered in their studies have always proven the Bible to be correct in its account of creation.

In both of these instances, Apostle Paul lets us know that we are without excuse because God has made Himself known to us; His sovereignty is all around us:  

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:  (Romans 1:20)

In Genesis we are told the condition of the world when God first performed His creative acts:

And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. . . (Genesis 1:2)

The following verses tell the account of God's creation of the world:

First day:        Light and darkness (verses 3-5)
Second day:   The firmament (Heaven) separating the waters (verses 6-8)
Third day:      Dry land and vegetation (verses 9-13)
Fourth day:    Heavenly bodies; sun, moon, stars (verses 14-19)
Fifth day:        Inhabitants of the waters and the birds (verses 20-23)
Sixth day:       Land animals and man (verses 24-25)

The Bible summarizes the creativity of God to reveal that. . .

For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:  And He is before all things, and by Him all things consist.    (Colossians 1:16-17)

On the sixth day, God created the greatest of all creations. He created the man in His own image:

And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.  So God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him: male and female created He them.  (Genesis 1:26-27)

God created the Adam, from the dust of the ground and breathed into him the breath of life 

And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul. (Genesis 2:7) 

God then created a woman from Adam.  

And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; And the rib, which the Lord God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man.
 (Genesis 2:21-22)

Man was created in God's image and placed on earth as His representative. As a representative of God, man was given dominion over the whole world to enforce God's claim to the earth. Man had dominion over all the plants and animals of the world.  Man also had a special responsibility. He was to multiply and fill the earth with other men and women who would reflect the image of God:

And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth. (Genesis 1:28)

Man is the greatest of all God's creations. Man was made in the image of God. He has a living, eternal soul which animals do not have. He has a spirit and a mind which enables him to learn about and communicate with God. The spirit of God actually came down and walked and talked with Adam in the beautiful garden in which he lived 

And they heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden.
  (Genesis 3:8)

Because of his special position in creation, man was to reflect the God in whose image he was made. He was to communicate with and praise the God who made him:

Even every one that is called by my name: for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him. . .

This people have I formed for myself; they shall shew forth my praise.  (Isaiah 43:7,21)

Adam and Eve were to reproduce and fill the entire earth with people just like themselves. . . people who were holy, reflected the image of God, and communicated with and praised their Creator. But something terrible happened to spoil this beautiful plan.

Genesis chapter 3 contains one of the saddest accounts in the Bible. It records what has come to be called "the fall of man." Man was created in God's image. Just as God has freedom of choice, man had freedom of choice. He is free to make his own decisions.

In the Garden where Adam and Eve lived, there were many trees, but there were also two special trees. One tree was called the tree of life .  If Adam and Eve had eaten of the fruit of that tree, they could have lived forever and never died.

And the Lord God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever:(Genesis 3:22) 

The other tree was called the tree of the "knowledge of good and evil". God forbid Adam and Eve to eat the fruit of this tree. He did not want man to experience evil with all of its terrible results so He warned that eating the fruit of this tree would cause death.

But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.  (Genesis 2:17)

But man did not heed God's warning. God had an enemy named Satan. Satan had once been a beautiful angel of God, but decided he wanted to be as great as God. Satan led a rebellion of angels in Heaven. (Isaiah 14:12-17)

Satan did not want man to serve God. Satan came first to woman, then to man through Eve in the Garden of Eden. He was disguised in the form of a serpent. He tempted them by making false promises. They yielded to the temptation, sinned against God, and ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

The results of this fall of man into sin changed the whole world. The plants and animals were no longer easy to control. Man had to struggle for dominion over them. Animals turned wild and fierce and the earth brought forth weeds and thistles. Terrible changes in weather came in the form of floods and similar disasters.

All the evil in the world today--all the plagues, suffering, and tragedies--are results of this first fall of man. Sin entered the world, and along with it, suffering. The punishment of death was brought on man, just as God had warned. All men will experience physical death until the end of time as we know it.

As if all this was not enough, an even worse catastrophe happened; man was separated from God by sin. The image of God that was to be reflected in man was spoiled. Because of sin, man lost his relationship and communication with God.

In this darkest moment of human history, God made a great promise. God said to Satan:

 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel. (Genesis 3:15)

This was the first revelation of a special plan of God. It revealed that a battle would rage throughout the centuries between man and Satan, but God assures us through His promise that mankind would be redeemed when He sent someone to crush man's enemy and restore man to right relationship with God. That "someone" was the Lord Jesus Christ.

 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.  (John 3:16)




(Biblical Studies)


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02/09/17



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