Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Beginning? Of What?

God touching Adam

The graphic is enlarged detail from Michelangelo’s fresco Creation of Adam on the Sistine Chapel's ceiling. You may follow the link of you wish to see an artful work of fiction, according to the Bible. The biblical story of Adam’s creation follows what is given as “the beginning”:

In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. (Genesis 1:1 KJV)

Not until verse 26 do we read of man’s creation – the last of the created. There’s no description there of how it was done. The creation process is given in chapter 2:

And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul. (Genesis 2:7 KJV)

We know from Exodus 33:17-20 that no man can look upon the face of God, though Moses was given a glimpse of His glory. We know that Adam and Eve heard His voice:

And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden. (Genesis 3:8 KJV)

If you read yesterday’s post, by now you are thinking, “She sure was wrong when she said it was the beginning!” Not hardly. There are always beginnings – and sometimes there is no end. God created a perfect earth, but sin entered, tempted, mankind gave in and there was a beginning of trouble as Adam and Eve realized they were guilty, and hid from God.

The crucifixion of Jesus, Christ, was supposed to be the end. The “princes” of this world thought it would be:

But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory: Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. (1 Corinthians 2:7-8 KJV)

Instead, it was the beginning of the most important, miraculous event God has given us – resurrection. Without the resurrection, we are lost:

But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen: And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain. (1 Corinthians 15:13-14 KJV)

And we are foolish for believing what Jesus said:

Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this? (John 11:25-26 KJV)

His death was absolutely necessary. His resurrection was known to Him. Because of that, we can answer that last question with, “Yes - Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief.” (see Mark 9:24 KJV)

Many do not believe – that God created heaven and earth; that God exists; that Jesus was resurrected; that we are loved enough to be offered heaven. So what.

For what if some did not believe? shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect? (Romans 3:3 KJV)

My beliefs will never convince God anyone else belongs in heaven. That’s a choice we each make. Each one of us decides what God is – or isn’t. Each one of us makes the decision whether or not there is an eternity, even when the possibility of hell’s reality dangles with the question. Yes, God created hell – but He sends no one there. That is as personal a choice as accepting, in faith, His gift:

For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. (Ephesians 2:8-9 KJV)

Have you made your choice? What did you begin?

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