The image of God is the most important export from Genesis.
Page-1-God and other Game Start articles introduce some radical concepts such as Godís Timetable and the Day-8 View of man, but I have come to see something even more important. It is the image of God we pick up when reading certain aspects of the early Genesis chapters. I have already mentioned them in various articles as I came across them, but I now feel that this is important to God, perhaps more important than the ďradicalĒ stuff. It seems that He saves the best for last.
It also seems that everything starts with a passion and God fills in the details later. I started all the Game Start articles because I was angry that people said that Genesis creation was wrong. When I heard people talk about God punishing man and cursing His creation I got angry. These misinterpretations of scripture lead to an image of an angry, short-tempered God. Yet God declared that He is slow to anger, gracious and merciful to those He loves.
Though I call them misinterpretations I know how easy it is to read them into scripture. In fact there is something in our fallen nature that tends to make us assume that God would react angrily, just as Adam initially hid from God. Perhaps it is that knowledge that we have done evil. And there in is the good news that Jesus has paid the price of our sin and now we can approach Godís throne with full assurance of his love.
Have a look at this sequence, starting in Genesis to see Godís patience, mercy, and grace:
Jesus paid the price for sin Ė with his own life. The way was cleared and man could freely choose to turn back to God Ė if they want to! Itís a free choice because of what Jesus did. Itís a choice we have to make. But we need to know about Jesus and we need to know that God is a loving Father so that we will want to turn back. Perhaps that is why it is so important to see the correct image of God, right at the start, before manís rebellion forced God to take stern actions.
Itís great and essential to rejoice about Jesus. But there is a big picture that is still unfolding. The good news is that we are saved. The way I read Godís timetable is that we have a couple of thousand years after Jesus was resurrected to make a choice before man has again thoroughly turned to evil and God will again be forced to act. But again he will not act until the pure spotless bride is ready for Jesus. And just as we saw in the Genesis, He will constrain His response. (Matthew 24:21-22)
Here are some of the other articles that further develop this theme...
Evolution was not embraced because the science was good but because people didnít want there to be a God.
And by the way, the evolution science never was good. It started with some interesting conjecture that could not be proven, and the amount of evidence against it has been steadily increasing. It gets to a point where you wonder how a thinking man could accept the science as any more than a working hypothesis, (to borrow a phrase I heard). It cannot be considered definitive in any way. Yet people pin their faith on it. Why? Because they donít want there to be a God.
Hereís an article that has great insight in the way atheists think. Itís very long and I have not read it all but take note of section ď3 Why Atheism is chosenĒ and the quotes about ďI donít want there to be a God.Ē ... http://creation.com/atheism
The Church was not manifesting the power of God or Love of God as did Jesus Ė neither in the 1800ís nor now. Religion and law, not grace, was manifest. The world however was embracing the industrial revolution. Science was being applied to technology and manís pride in what he could do and his presumption about what he knew or would eventually know was exulting itself. Man did not want to be subject to a God but through knowledge and technology was exulting himself. Itís the Tree of Knowledge and the Tower of Babel all over again.
The Church seemed to be relying on its last stronghold, creation Ė just look around at the awesome creation and you know there must be a God. Then Darwin gave them the excuse Ė a facade of science Ė that said it all happened by accident. The world embraced the excuse to deny God.
You cannot defeat evolution with good science because it never relied on good science. However, those who want there to be a God will see the creation science and accept God and be encouraged Ė so it has great value.
But how do you reach those who donít want there to be a God? That is not going to be done by better science or better creation teaching. Itís a free choice and I do not expect a time when everyone will choose God. But I do hope for a time when all will hear the good news preached with Power and Love so that all will have the option and be without excuse.
Jesus said that the world would know that we are his disciples if we love one another. God wants people to see Him as He is Ė a loving Father who has patiently endured the rejection of those He created to be His children, but who has never given up, and even more, has Himself given up His own precious son that we might be saved. Any discussion of creation, of Genesis, without this image of God being projected and without the likeness, the character, that is the Love of God and the Grace of God, will be shunned by those who donít want there to be a God.
Oh Lord, grant that I too may spread the good news with power and love so that all may know and many may choose You.