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Creation’s Importance

Creation’s Importance

Genesis 1 Seminar – Session 1

 

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What were God’s emotions when He created the heavens and the earth? How does an accurate understanding of Genesis 1 help us resist a scoffing spirit? This teaching highlights the process of creation, God’s emotions in the midst of the creation account, God’s covenant with creation, and Jesus’ role in creation as the Alpha and the Omega.

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Creation’s Importance

THE SCOFFING SPIRIT AND THE DELIBERATE FORGETTING OF GENESIS 1

THE SCOFFING SPIRIT AND THE DELIBERATE FORGETTING OF GENESIS 1

2 Peter 3:3-7

3 First of all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. 4 They will say, “Where is this ‘coming’ he promised? Ever since our fathers died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation.” 5 But they deliberately forget that long ago by God’s word the heavens existed and the earth was formed out of water and by water. 6 By these waters also the world of that time was deluged and destroyed. 7 By the same word the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men. 8 But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. 9 The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.

A.    In the last days, there will a scoffing spirit.

B.    The fruit of this scoffing spirit is a wicked lifestyle, “following evil desires.”

C.   The topic of scoffing: the promised Second Coming. Where is this promised coming?

D.   This scoffing spirit is linked to the deliberate and intentional forgetting of three important truths.

1.    A deliberate forgetting of what God did in Genesis 1.

5 But they deliberately forget that long ago by God’s word the heavens existed and the earth was formed out of water and by water.

2.    A deliberate forgetting of what God did at the Flood, and why He did what He did at the Flood.

6 By these waters also the world of that time was deluged and destroyed.

3.  A deliberate forgetting of God’s long-suffering, patience, and mercy toward sinners.

9 The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.

E.    What would it mean for you and me if God were not slow to anger and quick to love, but slow to love and quick to become angry?

F.    If we want to cultivate an alert spirit and resist the scoffing spirit, Peter tells us that accurate understanding of these three issues will help us greatly. We need to know what He was up to in Genesis 1. We need to have clear understanding about what really happened. We really need to ask God to grip us with His heart and love for sinners like you and me.

G.   The next few weeks, we’re going to be working carefully through Genesis 1-3. Peter says a scoffing spirit and a wicked lifestyle comes when people deliberately and willfully forget Genesis 1. We want to do the opposite. We’re asking God to give us a humble and alert spirit and a hunger for a righteous lifestyle by deliberately remembering the truths of Genesis 1.

H.   What happened in Genesis 1? Why should Genesis 1 motivate us to a life of wholehearted love for God and obedience? Why should Genesis 1 drive us to a life of prayer and hunger for righteousness? Why is God so passionate about us having a clear and accurate understanding about what happened at the beginning? How does Genesis 1 relate to the Second Coming and the Day of the Lord?

GENESIS 1:1-3

GENESIS 1:1-3

Genesis 1:1-3

1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2 Now the earth was formless and empty (ESV “void”), darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. 3 And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light.

A.    The heavens and the earth have a beginning point. There was a point in time in which the heavens and the earth did not exist. Then there was a point in time in which the heavens and the earth did exist. The point of demarcation was God’s word and voice.

“In the beginning…”

B.    God exists eternally. He has no beginning and no end. The heavens and the earth cannot contain Him.

1 Kings 8:27

But will God really dwell on earth? The heavens, even the highest heaven, cannot contain you. How much less this temple I have built!

C.   There is more than just one heaven. There are multiple heavens.

“…God created the heavens

D.   Today, many of us think about the earth and one “heaven.” However, the Bible says there are heavens in the plural. There are multiple heavens. How many heavens are there? What are they like? Who lives there? How do the heavens relate to each other and to the earth? Is there an experience of time in the heavens? This is what we’ll be talking about next week or the week after.

E.    When God speaks, He creates. Life comes forth and is created when God’s word is spoken as His Spirit moves. God’s word is powerful.

Psalm 29

1 Ascribe to the Lord, O mighty ones, ascribe to the Lord glory and strength. 2  Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name; worship the Lord in the splendor of his holiness. 3 The voice of the Lord is over the waters; the God of glory thunders, the Lord thunders over the mighty waters. 4 The voice of the Lord is powerful; the voice of the Lord is majestic. 5 The voice of the Lord breaks the cedars; the Lord breaks in pieces the cedars of Lebanon. 6 He makes Lebanon skip like a calf, Sirion  like a young wild ox. 7 The voice of the Lord strikes with flashes of lightning. 8 The voice of the Lord shakes the desert; the Lord shakes the Desert of Kadesh. 9 The voice of the Lord twists the oaks and strips the forests bare. And in his temple all cry, “Glory!” 10 The Lord sits enthroned over the flood; the Lord is enthroned as King forever. 11 The Lord gives strength to his people; the Lord blesses his people with peace.

F.    We are made in God’s image. Our words too have power. With our words, we can harm or heal. James calls the tongue a restless evil. We must ask God to help us have righteous speech.

Proverbs 18:21

The tongue has the power of life and death

G.   Creation implies the authority of the Creator. God created the world therefore God has authority over the world. We must not be arrogant and think that we are in charge or that we know what is best for the world.

H.   God is creative. He loves to create. He loves to take things that are shapeless and void, brood over them with His Spirit, and then shape them through His creative word of life. God is an artist. He enjoys what He does. We’re made in God’s image. If you are an artist, a musician, or love to create things, go for it. God loves to dream with you. This is the image of God shining through.

I.      Leadership principle. People often come to leaders wanting quick and easy answers. But we need to have people go and ask the Holy Spirit and hear from Him. Trying to get people in touch with God’s creativity, which will take them much farther than I ever could. As leaders, we need to position people for the Genesis 1 encounter. Want to help people become postured in the place of prayer for the Spirit to brood over their hearts and speak the word of creativity for their ministry assignments and calling. This always produces more lasting fruit in the end without people feeling manipulated. And love for Jesus increases in the process. Though we have to wait for it and this is hard, when the word comes, the human heart gets exhilarated. A heart exhilarated by the Spirit is a motivated heart.

GOD'S EMOTIONS FOR CREATION

GOD’S EMOTIONS FOR CREATION

A.    How did God feel when He created the world? What were the emotions flowing through His heart? When God created the earth, it was a joyous occasion full of joy and singing.  God felt great delight over the good world He had made.

Job 38:4-7

4 “Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell me, if you understand. 5 Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know! Who stretched a measuring line across it? 6 On what were its footings set, or who laid its cornerstone— 7 while the morning stars sang together and all the angelsshouted for joy?

Proverbs 8:27-31

27 I (wisdom) was there when he set the heavens in place, when he marked out the horizon on the face of the deep, 28 when he established the clouds above and fixed securely the fountains of the deep, 29 when he gave the sea its boundary so the waters would not overstep his command, and when he marked out the foundations of the earth. 30 Then I was the craftsman at his side. I was filled with delight day after day, rejoicing always in his presence, 31 rejoicing in his whole world and delighting in mankind.

B.    This is how God felt when He made you. This is how God feels when He performs miracles. He feels great joy and pleasure. This is how God feels while He sanctifies us and transforms us by the Holy Spirit into a new creation in Christ’s image. That is what God does to our hearts. His Spirit moves, and then He speaks the creative word. This transforms us over time.

2 Cor. 5:17

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!

THE COVENANT WITH CREATION

THE COVENANT WITH CREATION

A.    God doesn’t just create. God is highly committed to the things He creates. We create things and then throw them away if they break. God isn’t like that.

B.    Love is cheap without commitment. It isn’t real. That is why our generation is so broken. Parents bring children into the world, but without commitment to them. Young couples give their bodies to each other, but without the bond of commitment that marriage brings. This almost always leads to shame and heartache.

C.   Love without covenant creates insecurity and doubt in peoples’ hearts. It creates the question: In marriage, love includes emotion, desire, and affection. But these are superficial and flimsy when not anchored in deep commitment. God feels deep emotion, affection, and pleasure over the world He created. But this love is also anchored in the commitment of covenant.

D.   When God created the world, He made a covenant with the creation. He bound Himself to the creation in a covenant of love. He promised to sustain the universe by His power and love. This was an eternal covenant. God is eternally faithful to His covenant with creation. He has promised to uphold and love His creation forever.

Jeremiah 33:19-26

19 The word of the Lord came to Jeremiah: 20 “This is what the Lord says: ‘If you can break my covenant with the day and my covenant with the night, so that day and night no longer come at their appointed time, 21 then my covenant with David my servant—and my covenant with the Levites who are priests ministering before me—can be broken and David will no longer have a descendant to reign on his throne. 22 I will make the descendants of David my servant and the Levites who minister before me as countless as the stars of the sky and as measureless as the sand on the seashore.’ ” 23 The word of the Lord came to Jeremiah: 24 “Have you not noticed that these people are saying, ‘The Lord has rejected the two kingdoms  he chose’? So they despise my people and no longer regard them as a nation. 25 This is what the Lord says: ‘If I have not established my covenant with day and night and the fixed laws of heaven and earth, 26 then I will reject the descendants of Jacob and David my servant and will not choose one of his sons to rule over the descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. For I will restore their fortunes and have compassion on them.’”

E.    God here uses His covenant with creation as a means of strengthening Israel. His covenant faithfulness to creation is eternal and irrevocable. This passage is no comfort to Israel if God’s faithfulness to creations isn’t understood as lasting forever.

GENESIS 1 & THE GOSPEL

GENESIS 1 & THE GOSPEL

A.    Throughout Scripture, God uses Genesis 1 to remind His people that He has the power and the ability to fulfill all of His promises to us.

Isaiah 40:27-31

27 Why do you say, O Jacob, and complain, O Israel, “My way is hidden from the Lord; my cause is disregarded by my God”? 28 Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. 29 He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. 30 Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; 31 but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

B.    God is going to fulfill His promise to send Jesus back to deliver us from sickness and disease and injustice. But we mustn’t forget that God is delaying using His Genesis 1 power in the Second Coming because of His patience with sinners. This is good news for us. It meant our salvation.

C.   God’s covenant promises to Jesus’ disciples: if we hold firmly to the gospel and remain loyal to Jesus even through sufferings, trials, and persecutions until Jesus returns, God will raise us from the dead and give us glorified bodies. Genesis 1 shows that God had the power to bring the heavens and the earth into existence, and that He has the power to give life to our bodies again in the resurrection at the end of the age. There will be a bodily resurrection of the righteous and the wicked. God has power to raise both the righteous and the wicked from the dead.

Acts 24:15-16

15 and I have the same hope in God as these men, that there will be a resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked. 16 So I strive always to keep my conscience clear before God and man.

1 Thessalonians 4:13-18

13 Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. 14 We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. 15 According to the Lord’s own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command (as the Spirit broods, let there be life!), with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. 18 Therefore encourage each other with these words.

John 5:25-29

5 I tell you the truth, a time is coming and has now come when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God and those who hear will live. 26 For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son to have life in himself. 27 And he has given him authority to judge because he is the Son of Man. 28 “Do not be amazed at this, for a time is coming when all who are in their graves will hear his voice 29 and come out—those who have done good will rise to live, and those who have done evil will rise to be condemned.

D.   Genesis 1 reminds us of that. When Jesus returns, God is going to use the power of Genesis 1 to purge the earth of wickedness and fill the earth with righteousness. Jesus is the author of life. As the eternal Word of God, the Aleph and the Tav, He was the one through whom the world came to be the first time. Now as the Word of God made flesh in Jesus, He has been raised from the dead and has a new body. Jesus of Nazareth is the Aleph and the Tav, the Alpha and the Omega. He will be the author of life when He appears. When He comes back, the Spirit will brood over the earth again, Jesus will speak the word in power again, the dead in Christ will rise to inherit the kingdom of God.

E.    God is in covenant with His creation. He is faithful to His creation. When Jesus returns, He will show God’s faithfulness to creation by restoring it.

Acts 3:19-21

19 Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, 20 and that He may send Jesus Christ, who was preached to you before, 21 whom heaven must receive until the times of  restoration of all things, which God has spoken by the mouth of all His holy prophets since the world began.

F.    God has power to bring the dead to life. He is in a covenant with creation. To receive the promises when Jesus returns in Genesis 1 power, to be a part of that new creation in the resurrection of the righteous, we must persevere and cling to faith in Jesus to the end no matter what we may face in the days ahead. Persecution and tribulation is coming. But God will sustain us through it through the power of Genesis 1, and He will resurrect us at the end by the power of Genesis 1. But we must stand firm to the end.

1 Corinthians 15:2

By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain.

G.   As we wait for our hope and see to walk in obedience and righteousness, we aren’t alone. God gives us grace to press forward. God felt great joy when He created the heavens and the earth. God loves to recreate you. He loves His work in your life. Even when you stumble, don’t forget how much God delights in reshaping you. Repent and cry out for more grace. Keep pressing ahead not by your own strength, but by the Spirit’s power. The power of Genesis 1 is what will sustain. Jesus will sustain you by His powerful word as you meet with the one who loves you so dearly. This week I blew it a couple of times and I wanted to run away from God. But God drew me to the secret place again and reminded me of His delight in me.

H.   Keep praying. Jesus says that if we want to bear fruit, we must abide in him. Sometimes we avoid prayer because we don’t know the God of Genesis 1. Genesis 1 shows that God enjoys you. Genesis 1 shows that God has power to sustain you. Genesis 1 shows that God delights in remaking you into the image of Jesus. Genesis 1 shows that God feels deep love for you and that He is deeply committed to you. There is no need to avoid prayer any longer. Your Maker enjoys you. He is your Potter.

I.      Abiding in God through prayer is a crucial experience. It is the way we put the clay of our lives into the hands of our Creator. When we put the clay in His hands, the Spirit will brood and Jesus will speak the word of transformation to our inner man. We get to know the God who delights in us. In prayer we access grace and strength to stay loyal to Jesus. Our Creator is faithful to meet us in the secret place.

J.     Testimony of my time in the prayer room. Vision of Jesus bringing reconciliation between me and my father. What are you doing Lord? “I’m turning the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the hearts of the children to the fathers.”

K.    This week, I encourage you to set aside a lot of extra time in the secret place. Ask the Holy Spirit to brood over you in the room, and ask Jesus to speak His word of life into your heart. If you have any special testimonies you want to share, send them to info@danieltrainingnetwork.org.

 

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Tim Miller Tim Miller (124 Posts)

Tim is founder of the Daniel Training Network. His passion is to see followers of Christ embrace a life of the cross. He, his wife Emily, and their four children itinerate regularly as part of their ministry, and are presently living in New Mexico.


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