Hi everyone. Rob here.
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
That’s how the Bible begins in Genesis 1:1. The Creation story in Genesis 1 and 2 is important for us to know; not in a Sunday School kind of way where the emphasis is on God’s sovereignty, but in a relational kind of way where the emphasis is on God’s goodness. Right now the world is a mess, but God created it to be good. He created it out of his goodness and so he declares after every day of creation, “It is good.”
We can still sense this when we look up to the mountains, walk in the forest, encounter a waterfall or hear birdsong in our backyard. God’s goodness still resides in his creation. And yet…And yet tiny mosquitoes spread the Zika virus, malaria and dengue fever. Earthquakes destroy cities and lives. Drought strikes and wildfire threatens homes and, at times, destroys them. Tsunamis wreak havoc on coastlines and viruses infect crops, animals and humans. We fell and creation fell with us. It retained goodness but also acted against us. After God makes man and woman he calls creation “very good” and we became its rulers, its stewards. We then fell and became the primary destroyers of our planet. It is very, very sad.
But God the glorious Trinity is not just about creation, but also re-creation and renewal. There’s a fascinating verse in Romans 8 that says this:
The creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed.
As we give our lives over to Jesus and take our place as children of God we become good news for God’s creation. It seems that its fate is inexorably tied to ours.
For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God (Romans 8:20-21).
When we receive, believe and live out of the freedom and glory we have as God’s children we do so for the sake of others and for the creation as a whole. God has a cosmic plan and we are a central part of it. There will be a “renewal of all things (Matthew 19:28)” and it begins with our hearts. With our hearts made new we are then invited to see with the eyes of our heart (Ephesians 1:18) and what we begin to see is the goodness of God still present in his creation. It is the kingdom in our midst; the good seed that’s growing despite being surrounded by weeds (see Matthew 13:24-30).
It is the Giant Sequoias in California that absorb the wildfires and use that energy to grow even bigger; it is every sincere apology and every true act of forgiveness; it is the giving of blood after a shooting; it is laws passed that make life better for those who have it the hardest; it is every act of kindness, love and goodness that exists in this world and it is when people wake up and realise that Jesus’ blood was poured out for them.
Grace and peace everyone.