Summary: The creation story tells us: 1) God brings order out of chaos, 2) God creates all things good, and 3) God always has our best in mind. All of creation shouts out God's love for us!
How it All Started
Genesis 1 is one of the most beautiful, most carefully crafted sections of scripture. It’s kind of a mixture of poetry and prose. And its intent is clear: to show that God alone is creator of all. I heard about this one atheist scientist who came to God and said, “We've figured out how to make a man without you.” God said, “OK, let me see you do it.” So the atheist bent down to the ground and scooped up a handful of dirt. But God stopped him and said, “Oh, no you don't. Get your own dirt!”
Certainly, people have argued over the creation story: are these literal days or periods of time? And did God really speak it all into being? Today, I would ask that you merely trust that God has this passage here for a reason. And look for the simple, yet vital messages it has for us. Consider three I found. First,
1. God brings order out of chaos.
In the creation account, all you see at first is God’s Spirit hovering over the mess of creation, a chaotic mess. Nothing can live there. It’s not good. But God is not done. As God speaks into being each element of creation, he does so in a very purposeful way. God designs a planet upon which humans can not only survive but thrive. God creates food for the humans. God creates a livable habitat. God brings order out of the chaos.
Now if God can do that with all of creation, I wonder if he can do it with my little corner of the world? Or how about yours? Everybody’s life falls apart at the seams at some time or another: disease, relatives that are hard to get along with, pesky neighbors, financial strain, problems at work, and if no other crises, certainly the aging process brings its challenges. Can God speak order into our chaos? Yes! God the creator can create good out of your bad, if you will but let him. Isn’t that what Romans 8:28 is all about? That incredible promise states, “In all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”
I was talking with a Veteran who came to my Bible study Friday. We’ll call him “Stan.” He has just recently been drawn into an active personal relationship with God. His cancer has returned, he looks frail, and he’s about to undergo a second round of chemotherapy and radiation. As he shared this with me, we talked about how his life belongs to God, his healer, and God will either heal him of this cancer now or bring Stan to his heavenly home in a perfect healing. As I shared this with him, I could tell he was already there. He said, “I know, Chaplain, and I’m ready either way.” Stan found order out of his chaos. That’s one thing God does, and secondly,
2. God creates good.
Notice how many times in this beautiful creation account, God assesses things and says, “And it was good.” God created it ... and it was good. And at the end of all his creative work, including the first humans, he pronounces, “And it was very good!” As the old saying goes, “God don’t make no junk.” God made it all good, and that includes you and me and this world in which we live. Jackie Hill Perry said, “Something revolutionary happens in the heart when you recognize that every single person you will ever meet is made in the image of God.” God made everything and everyone good.
Now has the creation fallen? Sure! Adam and Eve rebelled against God, as each of us have since. And their sin affected the natural world—the plants and animals and the globe and universe itself—just as much as their sin affected their relational world. Sin permeated the entire world. In the first chapter of the book of Romans, Paul writes about how the creation has fallen. Yet, one day God will make a new heaven and a new earth, and he will make it all good again, with no more sin to ruin things.
Until then, our role is to be good stewards of this great world God has given us. Why? Because God made it all good, every person and all of creation. And God put us in charge of the rest of creation. He gave humans “dominion” over the earth. Christians of all people should be most opposed to littering, to wasting resources such as water and food. Christians should be excited about alternative energy sources and conservation and recycling. Christians should be quick to forgive, quick to reconcile when possible, quick to make the peace. Because God made it all good. God brings order out of chaos. God creates all good, and lastly,