The importance of beginnings can hardly be overstated. The first day of a new venture, maybe it’s addition to the NY stock exchange is exciting (QVC mompreneur). The first day of a marriage relationship is magical, I know mine was. The first child we hold in our arms as parents is overwhelming; filled with wonderment and uncertainty. What then might the first day of glory look like for those you know? ( on waking up in glory: finally home?
Sometimes, beginnings bring an ominous flavor to life. In his book, seeking Allah, finding Jesus, Nabeel Quresh asked his mother about the animosity between Christians and Arabs. He writes,
I asked my mother, but why would Christians treat Muslims that way? Didn’t they also follow “the respected Jesus”? “Son, they weren’t following the respected Jesus; they stopped following him a long time before. They turned Jesus into a God and so they dishonored the respected Jesus and blasphemed Allah. That is why Allah sent Muhammed and Islam is the final message for all mankind (46).
The messages we hear at the beginning are transformational..what Nabeel heard?
God is not a Father, and He has no son.
Illustration of physician
So how you begin something is tremendously important: and that’s why,
Big I: Genesis 1: in the beginning, God exists, and because He exists, we have a future.
That future has two strands
WHAT GOD HAS DONE
Created a world habitable to man.
- The creation reflects God’s care for the crown of his creation. (Examples). The air that you breathe, the sun that warms your body … His prescription for an orderly creation.
- He is present in the principles He establishes to manage His creation: No deism here: An active creator: The presence of water/ seas shall prove to be an instrument of salvation (exodus) and judgment(flood).
- He is the priority in His creation. Nothing that He puts his hand to should reflect anything other than His glory. (1:15-19).
- His creation reflects his power over life (authority). The land may produce the living creatures but it’s God who gives them life :(1:24-25).
- With man, the focus is personal (Let us…).
- Not after their kind, but specified man and woman, made in God’s image
- They are male and female… Emphasized in their humanity
- And their given dominion over all other creatures
WHAT GOD WANTS TO DO
The great plan of God in Genesis is to carve out a relationship with man. (3 characteristics)
- A relationship that is eternal: outlast the death rattle of sin.
- A relationship that is durable: outlive the sins of the patriarchs.
- Personal: outshine even the relationship with the first couple which was based on perfection in innocence.
A people who will love God, disciples who will follow him, and stewards who will serve him.
WHAT GENESIS MUST MEAN TO YOU.
- A conviction to begin correctly. And that means in faith. Come to Christ, acknowledge your sin, and repent of it. Believe him, receive him and trust him for your future… That’s what Adam/Eve/ Noah/ Abraham…
- A burden to end faithfully! Trusting in the perseverance of God to do what God asked them to do… Hold on to the end: Hebrews 11. Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph. Finished well. Closed their eyes in faith and died in the arms of God. That’s what you want- that’s what your children will remember! (Not man tights)
The older I get, the fewer people left who remember my beginning– something unsettling about that. But God does !
- Jeremiah 1:5
- Psalm 139