Did God create THE world? Or, does God create YOUR world?
I call this debate 'majoring in minors'... Again today I was confronted by someone who is so committed to creation theory that he is missing God at work in the rest of his life.
He believes fundamentally that Genesis chapter 1 gives the account of God's creation (past tense) of the world. Hence, the purpose of this passage of scripture for him had to do with an act of God in history... It is a record of a fact that took place somewhere in the past.
Wouldn't it be so sad if that was all that this text could have to say, a dry dead fact about an unchanging historical event that took place very long ago?
Of course he knew nothing about the context of Genesis 1 (never mind the fact that the same Bible - if read in the way he insisted on reading it - contained a contradictory account of creation just one chapter later in Genesis 2). He had not bothered to actually READ the text, rather he wanted to tell it what to say! It HAD to fit his modern view of scientific creation theory, it didn't matter that it was written for a group of people in exile, in a strange land, living in slavery and chaos. No, he wanted it to be about history and science! What good would this text be to suffering people who are doubting their faith?
For those who have not yet heard about the real context of Genesis 1, please go and read about the context in which it was written by reading Psalm 137 (this was written at the same time, in the same exilic context as the creation Narative of Genesis 1). Here you have a group of people, confused, lives in chaos, struggling to find and see God, or God's hand, struggling to hear God's voice! And so they say "How can we sing the Lord's song in a strange land?"
It is in answer to this question, over and against their context of exile and slavery, being polluted by the Babylonian creation myths of Marduch (yup google Marduch), the author of Genesis 1 preaches this GREAT sermon about God's power, God's order in chaos, God's powerful voice to speak life out of nothingness! Isn't that a great message? Doesn't that sound so much more like God? God is much more interested in creating truth, meaning and real living IN YOUR LIFE, rather than giving a book of history about the events of the creation of THE world.
Sure, God is interested in THE world... However, I can assure you God is SO much more interested in YOUR world!
Oh, how I wish we would stop majoring in minors! It is time that we stop just reading the bible (telling it what we want to hear), perhaps we should allow the text to read us!
Let's hear some comment, is Genesis 1 about history, God's creation of THE world? Or, is it about God reaching into your life, a place where you may feel like a stranger, exiled in a strange and unfamiliar land; maybe you are enslaved, empty, no longer able to sing the Lord's song in a "strange land"? Perhaps, it is more about God's creation of YOUR world, rather than just THE world....
It kind of makes me think. How about you?
Oh, and yes Gus, this was typed in Dr Jennings' last lecture. Wasn't it GREAT?!