If we were to all truly evaluate ourselves, check our credentials and sum up our value and true worth and then from that subtract God from the equation the truth of the matter is we would come up with NOTHING We would be left with something that is void, empty, formless, and without light. Yet, and we are all guilty of it at some point or another, we climb gracefully up on top of our High Horse and have the audacity to think of ourselves as Self-made, self-educated, self- sufficient, and self-reliant. When the reality of the situation is, we are made in His image, Made at His discretion, consecrated for His purposes, and Saved by His Grace. If you really want to break it down as the songwriter says we can’t even Walk without Him holding our hands.
As we look over our text today, I am certain that it is a story that each of you is at least vaguely familiar with and for as many times as I have heard it or read over it I had to some degree just taken it at face value without much additional thought. It was simply the creation of the world. However, as I was preparing for today, God placed it in my spirit to revisit this particular passage. In really studying it, I noticed that it truly does mirror the way that God works in our lives today.
God took absolute nothingness and created a masterpiece from it. He took chaos and brought order. He took darkness and blessed it with light. He cradled the earth in its void ness and filled it with new life. And then he took dirt, the clay of the Earth and with his loving hands caressed it and formed man - but He did not just form him in any old kind of way. He created man in his own image. Then he knelt beside him and kissed him with the breathe of life.
Therefore, the Bible begins not with just a recount of the creation of the world, but with a picture of the very nature of God. The Bible starts out showing us that He is a creator God and that nothing, no mountain, no valley, and no living thing can come in to His presence without being transformed and recreated. He is a God that specializes in creating Great Outcomes from Nothing Beginnings. A God that forms and fills. He is a God that can see beyond what is to what can be. See, even when we were in the womb He knew us. Even when we were lost in Sin He loved us. Our steps were ordered even before we acknowledged His presence. He sees something in us even when we are dwelling in our nothingness.
The scripture says, “The earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the deep…”
But even in that chaos, the word goes on to say that … “the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.”
What an incredible gift…to know, that when we need God the most, God is right there, waiting with open arms for us to turn to Him, waiting to receive us, waiting to create life in an otherwise empty world.
When we get to the point in our lives, when it seems as if everywhere we look, there is nothing but darkness…right there on the edge…we will find God!
God is always there……waiting and watching……wanting to create a Great Outcome from our Nothing Beginning And you know what? If we are willing to let Him, this is exactly what He does. The Bible tells us that anyone who comes to Christ Jesus is a new creation: “the old is gone, the new has come!”
Now I know, that all of you were probably saved, sanctified, and Holy Ghost filled from the cradle to today, so what I am saying won’t necessarily apply to you. But, for the three of four us that know that we were lost in the middle of our mess before we invited God into our life. Who know that before God stepped in there was nothing but chaos, but he came in and brought with him a peace beyond all understanding. Who know that before God stepped in our lives were so black with sin, despair, and confusion that we could not see a way out and therefore know that He is truly a light unto our path. For those of us who know that We don’t even deserve to be in this place raising up Holy Hands because for where we have been and what we have been through we should have been six feet under. For us the fact that God truly specializes in creating something from Nothing is enough to get our praise on. See even if HE doesn’t move another mountain….I can’t complain.
Keeping in mind that God is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow, the Bible is full of examples of what God can do with Nothing. Let me make my case.
Paul’s life is a testimony of what God could do with nothing. Paul’s letter to Timothy in 1 Timothy 1:15-16 says it best. Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners - of whom I am the worst. But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his unlimited patience as an example for those who would believe on him and receive eternal life. God met Paul in his nothingness. He took Paul who made a job of persecuting Christians, who was lost in His contempt for others, who was deaf to God and not only took away his nothingness but then replaced it with the something that is salvation, But then, he gave blessing on top of blessing, Grace on top of Grace and did a great work through Him.
Again, God is the same yesterday, today and forever more. He is no respecter of persons and Heaven and Hell shall pass away before one word of his should prove untrue so what He did in Biblical times is still viable for us today. God still can make Great Outcomes from Nothing Beginnings. But, if that is the case, why are so many of us still going through, still lost in our darkness, still void in our spirits, still empty in our souls, still struggling. The answer is because while God can do wonders with Nothing He does not want your Something in the way. See, we can all take great joy in knowing that God can do miraculous things when there appears to be nothing left to do, but to truly activate that power in our lives we have to begin to let go of our Something. That Something that blocks God moving in our lives is different in each person. If you want to know why God has not done something about your Nothingness, then ask what Something are you Holding on to! We have such a worldly perspective on what defines us that we can’t let go and let God. We hold on to our Something for dear life. We are so caught up in what we define ourselves as being that we never let God define us for us.
Part of the reason that it is so difficult to let go of our something is because we can’t grasp the way that God works. We are bound by our carnality instead of doing like Phillipians 2:5 says and letting this mind be in you that is also in Christ Jesus. See, our thoughts are not His thoughts and our ways are not His ways. God moves in a different dimension and a different realm. Understand that in God’s realm you have to give in order to receive. You have to surrender in order to be victorious. He has to let you appear down and out in order to lift you up so that He gets the Glory, You have to die in order to truly live, and you have to let yourself become Nothing to allow God to use you for anything.
Revelations 3:17 says: “You say I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing. But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked.” Then over in Galatians 6:3 it says: If anyone thinks he is Something when he is Nothing, he deceives himself. Turn to your neighbor and say DON’T DECEIVE YOURSELF.
Stop holding on to your something. Know that holding on to your Something binds your praise, binds your victory, and binds God from allowing the fullness of His will and His blessings to fall on your life. To truly live up to your true potential in God, you have to shake loose everything that binds you up.
The question then is what does it mean to become nothing, to surrender to our nothingness, to strive to be nothing. As you recall, the text for today’s message came from the book of Genesis. The word Genesis is defined as origin or source. Therefore the first step in surrendering to our nothingness is recognizing that our origin and source is in God. Therefore, it is not by our own power, our own will, or our own might that we travel through this world. All that we are must be rooted in God. For truly He is our power source, the origin of our joy, the center of our peace, and the redeemer of our soul.
Becoming nothing means that we humble ourselves before God. It means removing our religious masks, discarding our self appointed sanctified robes and standing naked before God. …baring all of our weaknesses, baring all of our doubts, baring all of our deficiencies and inadequacies. Becoming nothing means relinquishing OUR will and accepting GODS. It means that we come to the understanding that for as much as we believe that we have it all together and for as much as we belive that we have all the solutions to our own problems -true power belongs to God. Romans 7:18 says: For I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my flesh. For the desire to do good is in me, but there is no ability to do it. But praise God, if you turn over to Luke 1:37 it says: Nothing is impossible with God. Becoming nothing means recognizing the reality that any power that we are to ever have can only be that power which comes to us through God.
It is only as we seek God as sovereign over our lives, as we come to him humbled, as a child, as we lay our all on the alter before God that he can be free to do something with our nothingness. 1 Corinthians 1:28 says that God has chosen the world’s insignificant and despised things - the things viewed as NOTHING - so he might bring to Nothing the things that are viewed as Something. See when you surrender your nothingness to God, he looks down from heaven upon your nothingness and has mercy upon you. Then he shelters you in His grace and sends a fresh anointing on your life. You then become one of God’s anointed ones. The God who has dominion over all that is Heaven and beneath it commands TOUCH NOT MY ANNOINTED So, once you become an anointed one you then become an official member of the Touch Me Not Club. And, as one of God’s touch me nots, not one storm can rise up in your life and overtake you. Not one adversary can claim victory over you. When you become a touch me not, you can take hold of the promise of God that not one weapon formed against me shall prosper.
Apostle Paul said in 2 Corinthians 4:6, “For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness WHO HAS SHONE IN OUR HEARTS to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.”
Jesus said, “I am the light of the world.” In addition, John chapter 1 tells us that “in him was life, and that life was the light of men.” So, when we turn to God we find the light of Jesus Christ.
We discover a hope, a promise, and a future! We discover, much to our amazement, that God has been there all along, and now, as we trust Him, He is going to do great things in our lives!
As we stand across this building I ask that every eye be closed and every head bowed. The doors of the church are open. Is there anyone here that is unsure about your salvation? Is there anyone here who is lost in, caught up in his or her own Something? . Know that God can change you. Know that God desires to have a relationship with you. Know that no matter how low you have gone there is no depth that God cannot touch you, no limits to his ability to accept, forgive, and redeem you. Just come to the front right now. Accept the grace that God gives to those who accept Him as their Lord and savior. God does not require perfection. He only requires that you let Go of your Something and accept all that He has to offer you. That you accept Him as Lord and Savior of your life. Don’t let the sun go down without knowing that your soul is right with God. Is there one?
If there anyone who here who already knows that God is a God who saves, but knows that they have backslidden God is married to the backslider. Recommit yourself to God as He welcomes you back with open arms. Or is there someone here looking for a church home that will nurture you in your spiritual walk. Looking for a church That will teach God’s word with power and conviction. That will accept you in Love and make you a member of the family. Let Him come now.