“In the beginning…” Those three words jump out of the first line of the most inspirational book in human history – the Bible. In the beginning of time, God did something that seems impossible. He created, by himself, the entire heavens and the earth and all that lives upon it. The description of this miracle in Genesis chapter 1 is stunning.
In six short days the Bible tells us, God put in place the entire cosmos, including the stars and our own sun and moon. He separated the heavens from the earth, creating places of dwelling for heavenly beings and earthly beings. He placed upon the earth land, water, plants and all kinds of animals. And finally, on day 6, the ultimate creation happened. God breathed mankind into existence.
Finally, after completing his work that he called “very good,” on the seventh day, God rested.
As we sit here at this time in history, it is hard for many to believe something like this could have taken place. Science proclaims other methods for the earth’s formation. Skeptics argue the impossibility of one all-powerful God, who existed for all eternity, accomplishing such a feat. In no way could this have occurred the way the Bible describes. It’s simply not logical.
Yet here we sit with this incredible origin story staring us in the face. What do we do with it?
“In the beginning…” raises many questions. Today, we’d like to take a look at what this means for followers of God (who we assume accept the creation account as written). What are the big takeaways for your life and your spiritual journey? We’d offer the following three conclusions from the creation story for your consideration.
In the Beginning was About Relationships
Why did God create in the first place? Why would he bring mankind into existence when he knew trouble would come in Genesis chapter 3? Wouldn’t it have been better if he had never created in the first place? At least then there would be no pain and suffering for humans to endure.
The purpose of God’s creation rests in his desire for relationships with those he created. God himself is a relational being, existing in three distinct persons – God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. He passed this relational nature on to mankind when we were created. That’s why our earthly relationships are so important. It’s how God intended for us to live.
In short, God has an inherent desire to connect with us, love us and be there for us as we journey through life.
God is so relation-oriented that he risked rejection from part of his creation to have fellowship with some of his creation. This is a very encouraging thought for those who follow him. God’s love is expansive and open to any who want it.
Image Bearers of God With Responsibility
In the creation narrative, there exist several sobering thoughts for followers of God. The first is found in Genesis 1:26 where we read God saying, “…let Us Make man in Our image...” Humans are uniquely and wonderfully different from the rest of creation because they are made in the image of God.
This raises many questions. For example, do we actually have the physical likeness of God? Probably. That’s the easiest and most likely interpretation you could make for that.
Are we equipped with intellect and a will like God? Yes.
Do we have emotions? Yes.
These human attributes came from God during creation. And since God said humans were made in his likeness, we can only conclude that we mirror these attributes of God. We are reflections of him. The only thing we can’t portray is his perfection.
Secondly, humans were given responsibility. God gave a general command to humans to be fruitful and multiply but then to also have dominion [rule, oversight] over the earth (Gen. 1:28). More specifically in Genesis 2:15, God placed the first man Adam in the Garden of Eden to “tend and keep it.” Adam had a role – to actively work in and reside over God’s creation.
The same directive applies today. There is great value in work, in finding the calling on one’s life. Furthermore, there is great responsibility to manage the resources of the earth that God has provided. Other passages in the Bible would call this having good stewardship over creation and the things that one has been personally given.
So the challenge for followers of God is twofold: 1) live in a way that reflects a positive image of God and brings glory to him, and 2) be a diligent steward over all he has entrusted you with.
In the Beginning is Believed by Faith
Can we accept the story that God alone was responsible for creation? That is the question that has driven so many away from faith. Why? Because of proof. Nobody alive today actually saw it happen.
How can you believe in something that you cannot see?
We have faith in many things. We demonstrate faith in craftsman, mechanics and pilots when we step on board an airplane. Faith convinces us that drivers will not cross the center lane as we speed by in our car. We act in faith that restaurants are preparing food in a sanitary manner. Faith is a fundamental exercise that we engage in on a daily basis.
So why should this be any different?
We were not there in the beginning. Just like so many other Biblical concepts, followers of God must accept creation by faith. If you can do that, then it allows you to take the next step and begin to shape a plausible argument for evidence of creation being true.
In the beginning God did something remarkable and hard to fathom. He spoke into existence the entire universe. And today we are enjoying the fruits of this act.
For many, creation is stumbling block. But for people who have chosen to follow God, this story is a constant reminder that he is working in this world for good. He loves all his creation and wants to have a relationship with any who believe in him by faith.
Leave a Comment or Answer a Question Below: Do you believe that in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth? If not, why? How are you working to honor being created in the image of God?