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Summary: The first in a series, ’Hearing the Word of God.’

(1) One of the books in our family library is a children’s book entitled, ‘The Blah’ by Jack Kent. It is the story about a young boy who feels like ‘a blah’ when no one pays attention to him and then gets very upset when his older brother steps on a prized crayon as he is coloring which then leads him to imagine himself leading an army of blahs against the terrible crayon breaker, older brother Billy. One of the things he says to himself in the story is that ‘no one pays attention to a blah.’

This morning I want to share, especially with our graduates, that we are not blahs or blobs of meaningless matter. We are, to quote the Psalmist, ‘fearfully and wonderfully made.’

(2) In addition to our honoring our grads today, we are also beginning a new series, ‘Hearing the Word of God’ based on the phrases written by Ron Forseth that he calls, ‘The 51 Word Bible’ that he composed as part of his 25 ways to engage the Bible. (3) Here is the 51 word Bible:

God’s Creation! Satan’s Deception. Adam’s Consumption. Noah’s Boat. Abraham’s Faith. Joseph’s Dreams. Pharaoh’s Oppression. Moses’ Escape. Doubters’ Wandering. Joshua’s Conquests. Judges’ Strength. David’s Slingshot. Solomon’s Wisdom. Prophets’ Proclamations. Israel’s Scattering.

Mary’s Delivery! Jesus’ Miracles. Rabbi’s Lessons. Lamb’s Death. Resurrection! Spirit’s Arrival. Disciples’ Testimony. Paul’s Letters. Churches’ Multiplication. World’s Demise. Heaven’s Triumph!

We are going to spend time over the next several months looking at these phrases because they provide us with a significant overview of the Bible that I believe will help us in personal and corporate Bible study.

Our first phrase, ‘God’s Creation,’ fits in line with our text and our context this morning because the main point that I stress to our grads today is that we are not blahs or blobs but that we are fearfully and wonderfully made because God created us.

And this is important to note because as you move into adulthood through college and/or work you will (if you already haven’t) encountered people who think God, faith, and Christianity is a stupid and fruitless pursuit. It is not!

In our main text this morning we read the Christian perspective of human creation, ‘So God created people in his own image; God patterned them after himself; male and female he created them.’ This verse and the chapter in which it appears leaves a great deal open for discussion and interpretation but behind it all is that we are here on earth because God created us to be and there was, and is a purpose for our existence.

A great deal of discussion and debate has been taking place in recent years between those who believe that our earth, universe, and us have merely evolved out of something else. Much has been made of what some call the ‘small gap’ between the apes and we humans. Now from a biological perspective there are some similarities between our genetic make up and other mammals.

Long will I remember a 20 to 30 minute event at the Toledo Zoo about 2 or 3 years ago when a then young gorilla put on a show for us as he frolicked and romped around his habitat. He was sooo cute and cuddly, but as we have since passed through that outstanding exhibit, he has gotten bigger and bigger.

They are fascinating and magnificent creatures. But while we share certain biological characteristics with them we are not the same although God created both them and us! They may seem human to us but they are not human! After all who shoots and poaches the other one on the one hand then seeks to save them and their habitat on the other hand?

What scripture does not give a full account of in scientific terms is made up for in mystery that requires faith. We do not have the full details of the 6 days of creation laid out for us but we do know that it was by divine design, not a random act or process, that this magnificent place we call earth, and the wonderful animal and plant kingdoms with which we co-exist, were created.

I have been reading the book, ‘The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief,’ by Dr Francis Collins.

Dr Collins is a devout believer and a geneticist who lead the mapping the human genome which is as the Encarta Dictionary says, ‘the full complement of genetic information that an individual organism inherits from its parents, especially the set of chromosomes and the genes they carry.’ In other words he helped to map out our DNA that is a very basic part of life structure. I studied genetics in high school and college but it was very rudimentary compared to the hundreds and thousands of hours he has spent on studying and understanding human DNA.

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