Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Creation: Forming the World

First Quarter 2013 Adult Sabbath School Lessons
Creation: Forming the World 
For the week of Jan. 12, 2013
The issue of Creation is most perfectly understood when it is discussed in relation to the reason why God brought man into creation.  We can indulge in endless discussions of the age of the earth, of whether or not organic matter existed in some form before this planet existed, and miss the real essence of the Biblical message.
Isaiah 43:7:  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.

Mankind was created to reflect the glory of God, and to be in fellowship with their Creator in a loving relationship. All of creation was a backdrop to this reality, and to provide for the physical, material, and spiritual needs of man. When God looked at creation and stated that it was “very good,” He was not merely enjoying the aesthetic beauty of it all, but was rejoicing in the reality that it was all in har- mony with His goal of creating what He desired would be a state of loving relationship, and constant uplifting of His creation, in love.

Isaiah 45:18 tells us that He created the world to be inhabited, and not only by human beings, but by loving human beings who enjoyed the world being inhabited by their God, as well as each other.  The creation story reveals a Creator who longs for fellowship with His creation.  Creation is the chosen arena in which God expresses His love for those He created. 

The condition, “without form and void,” became a creation for inhabitation, in which mankind could grow in their capacity to know and to express their love for God and each other.  As the moon reflects the sun, man was and is still meant to reflect the holiness, love, beauty and matchless charms of God’s character.  As a potter molds His clay, God still wants to mold us into His image.  “By beholding, we become changed.”  “Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith.”  Hebrews 12:2.  Jesus is recreating us in holiness and love.

The Creation story tells us that creation is effective at the Word of God, the divine fiat.  His word is effective to bring about His will, and His word is the expression of His character, thus, all of creation is the expression and outworking of divine love.  He first created light, and light is associated with God, with righteousness and holiness, with health, and with insight and discernment.  All truth is from God, and is reflected, in truth, by those who receive that light.  All of the creative processes of life are dependent upon God, and upon light, thus showing the importance of seeking, continually, for divine illumination.
God provided all that man would need.  Even the creation of the firmament would provide the hydration and healthy atmosphere in which man would experience a healthy environment.  The division of land and water shows the total control that God has over His creation, and the perfect symmetry, organization, and thought that went into His provision of a home for man, a home that we will inhabit again someday, when the “Meek shall inherit the earth,” and we will “reign as Kings and Priests on the earth.”  The order and perfection of creation, studied in reverse in terms of the effects of sin, shows us that all of creation is dependent upon our loving response of loving obedience, loyalty, trust, and full dependency upon God for the continuance of our home, and we will eventually learn the lesson so well, that sin will never reoccur.
The evils and destruction that has taken place in the history of this created world is not the result of God, whose love could only provide, sustain, uplift, develop, and reflect His love.  Sin is the opposite of creation.  Love always creates, it never destroys.  The lesson of creation is the lesson that our recreation is dependent upon relying on that love to remake us in holiness, and to restore all that sin has taken from us and from our world. 
-Thomas Cusack