Bible Heroes
Bible Heroes

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"God created the world out of nothing, and so long as we are nothing, He can make something out of us."
—Martin Luther

05-Oct-18


A God Near at Hand (Part One)

As we begin, we will jump aboard a metaphorical spaceship to take a speed-of-light journey through the cosmos. Our journey starts on the first day of January, and we exit Earth's atmosphere at a steady clip of 186,000 miles per second, headed out of the solar system. At this speed, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, and finally Pluto are all in our rearview mirror in under six hours. We have already traveled 3.5 billion miles.

Now, at the outer edge of our solar system, we alter course and travel perpendicular to our galaxy. Five years later, on April 19, we arrive at Alpha Centauri, the nearest star to our solar system, 25 trillion miles from Earth. It is not until we have traveled for 100,000 years that we can recognize the entire spiral shape of the Milky Way. Quoting the Moody Bible Institute's "The Milky Way and Beyond":

Finally, after ten billion years, we decelerate and pause to observe a theoretical view of the universe's large-scale structure. Countless billions of galaxies are now seen to comprise chains, masses, and thread-like structures that stretch across the cosmos, separated by enormous regions of empty space. It is a spectacular tapestry so vast and diverse in its design. But the power of its Creator must truly surpass all human understanding.

These huge measurements and the spectacular glory of the universe around us are humbling. They should help to bring God into sharp focus, at least in His awesome power and imagination as Creator. Such a great God can do anything! How can people like Deists posit that, yes, a Supreme Being created all of this, yet He has no interaction with humankind?

Deism, a popular intellectual movement a few centuries ago, is a belief in the existence of a God on the evidence of reason and nature only, while rejecting supernatural revelation. More simply put, according to Dictionary.com, it is "belief in a God who created the world but has since remained indifferent to it." Deists reject the idea that God interacts with mankind.

The vast amount of space in the universe might give some a reason to believe that God is off in a far corner of the universe. Even so, most of us would agree that it is not difficult to find evidence - both biblically and personally - that we worship a Creator who is very much involved in His creation. Perhaps it is good to review just how involved He really is.

Most Christians and even Deists readily accept John 1:1-5 as true about Deity:

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.

Jesus Christ, whom we know as the Word, has always been God and with God for eternity. But how involved has God been in the lives of humanity the thousands of years since its creation? Is He actively involved in what is going on here on Earth, interacting with it, continuing His creative work? Or has He simply created and left things to work themselves out? Perhaps, as Deists believe, He has wound up the universal clock and is simply watching it until it stops ticking!

We may initially think, "That's crazy!" and "We know better!" We can rattle off a few scriptures from memory, which show that God is involved. But do we really know that?

At times, for various reasons, God delays in intervening in people's lives. Do we feel that God has delayed giving us answers and help? When we fail to receive an immediate answer to prayer, or a problematic trial continues with no apparent end, does the thought creep into our minds that God is far off or uninvolved? After all, He inhabits eternity (Isaiah 57:15). The third heaven is His throne (II Corinthians 12:1-4). The universe is a vast space. Does God even have time to be involved even with something as big as this planet? Could He possibly have time to be involved in our seemingly insignificant lives?

The book of Genesis contains another beginning in its first chapter. We will look at a series of scriptures to show a pattern of God's interaction with His creation. We will begin in Genesis 1:27-28:

So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. Then God blessed them, and God said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth."

Here, God makes man and woman and instructs them about what they need to do. He gives them their marching orders to get them started in the right direction. In Genesis 2:15, He tells them to tend and keep the Garden, informing them about which trees they should and should not eat. In the next chapter, we see Him interacting directly with Adam and Eve.

And they heard the sound 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 among the trees of the garden. Then the LORD God called to Adam and said to him, "Where are you?" So he said, "I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself." (Genesis 3:8-10)

Here, we see God walking in the Garden with them and speaking to them. That is significant involvement! Can it actually be argued that God is not engaged with His creation? He created then immediately began instructing Adam and Eve on how to live. He gave them their initial training for a successful life. He also began to prepare them to live a godly life. This is a Deity, the awesome Creator God, who is actively involved with His creation and personally working with it to bring His purpose to fruition in humanity.

Next time, we will continue to examine Scripture to see God's intimate involvement with both humanity and individuals.


 


 
 

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A God Near at Hand

Next in this series

A God Near at Hand (Part Two)