Summary: God got close when He made humanity, close enough to breathe life into us. That's how close He wants to stay.
The Gospel According to Genesis - Part 2 of a 4-Part Series - “The History of Creation” January 11, 2015
God said to Adam, "I am going to make you a helper, a companion. What would you like your companion to be like?" Adam replied, "Well I want someone that is humorous, witty, intelligent, compassionate, caring, loving, trusting, polite, generous and beautiful."
God paused a moment after Adam's wish list and told Adam that a companion like that 'would cost him an arm and a leg.' Adam seemed a little dejected and then brightly replied: "What can I get for a Rib?"
Today is the second in a 4-part series entitled: The Gospel According to Genesis, and we’re looking at the first 4 books of the book of Genesis.
I’ve gotten some feedback from you the congregation, that there’s interest in going further into the book of Genesis, so more than likely, over this coming year, we’ll be spending more time looking at the stories in Genesis of God’s relationship with humankind.
Today we’ll wrap up the song of creation, which ends with the first few verses of Genesis chapter 2. And we’ll look at the history of creation that the rest of chapter 2 speaks about. Next week we’ll be looking at chapter 3 in a message called “Paradise Lost”, and on January 25 - there’s been a change. Pastor Lee will be bringing a message about the first brotherly relationship, between Cain and Abel, that didn’t end so well, either for Abel or for Cain. That will entitled “Murder Most Foul”.
We need to start first by wrapping up our focus of last week, which was the Song of Creation, the first chapter of Genesis.
If you remember, we spent a fair amount of time learning about how chapter 1 is a song or a poem, and we talked about the importance of WHY it is that we need to know what type of literature the Bible is speaking through - it boils down to the fact that the type of literature determines in part how we understand and interpret the Scripture.
If you missed last week’s message, rather than me spending time now going over the same things, I would encourage you to review the podcast or the transcript of the message, that you can find through our web site, www.catm.ca.
It should help address questions about tensions in the text between chapter 1 and chapter 2.
So the Song of Creation, which fills all of chapter 1, ends here with:
1 Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array.
So from the grand, from galaxies, to the minute, micro organisms [pics], God completed creation in all its vast array.
2 By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work. 3 Then God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.
This completes the song of Creation and talks about the 7th day, which we know from later on in the Bible is the Sabbath. It’s interesting to note that our need for sabbath rest, a weekly day of spiritual renewal is rooted in this text.
I suppose the thinking is that if God, who needs no rest, ever, chose to rest from His work, then we, who have limited physical and mental resources, and spiritual lives that need constant renewal, should absolutely rest.
I have a friend who is some years younger than I and not a Christ-follower. He is busily focussed on his career, and a couple of years back he talked to me about his schedule.
It had him working 7 days a week, at least 4 hours a day, usually much more, and breaking only at Christmas and maybe during the summer for a short spell. I told him that while his energy and vigilance was admirable, that he needed to build in some regular time for rest and renewal and contemplation.
A young person, he thought he was near invincible, as I did when I was young, and he ignored my advice. About 4 months later he found himself exhausted and sick and couldn’t figure out why.
He came around to concluding that maybe he should build in some rest to his schedule. He now takes at least a day a week to rest, and rarely gets sick.
The fact is we are created with a built-in need for renewal; a need to spend a day a week not busy with activity, not rushing and bustling about with ‘stuff’ to get done. And, very importantly, we’re built with a god-shaped hole in our lives, that although we can try to fill it with other things, can only ever, truly, be satisfied by the living God.