January 5, 2021
Genesis 1:14-25 (CEB)
14 God said, “Let there be lights in the dome of the sky to separate the day from the night. They will mark events, sacred seasons, days, and years. 15 They will be lights in the dome of the sky to shine on the earth.” And that’s what happened. 16 God made the stars and two great lights: the larger light to rule over the day and the smaller light to rule over the night. 17 God put them in the dome of the sky to shine on the earth, 18 to rule over the day and over the night, and to separate the light from the darkness. God saw how good it was.
19 There was evening and there was morning: the fourth day.
20 God said, “Let the waters swarm with living things, and let birds fly above the earth up in the dome of the sky.” 21 God created the great sea animals and all the tiny living things that swarm in the waters, each according to its kind, and all the winged birds, each according to its kind. God saw how good it was. 22 Then God blessed them: “Be fertile and multiply and fill the waters in the seas, and let the birds multiply on the earth.”
23 There was evening and there was morning: the fifth day.
24 God said, “Let the earth produce every kind of living thing: livestock, crawling things, and wildlife.” And that’s what happened. 25 God made every kind of wildlife, every kind of livestock, and every kind of creature that crawls on the ground. God saw how good it was.
What does creation teach us about God? While there are many lessons to be learned, one primary teach is that there is only one God who created all things. The theological term is monotheism. The belief in one God was unique to Judaism, it made absolutely no sense to the ancient peoples which practiced and understood polytheism (many gods) who existed at different levels of knowledge and power and influence.
Perhaps the first of the ten commandments underscores the centrality of monotheism, “I am the Lord your God, you shall have no other gods before me.” God, as Creator, takes first place in all things, and our call is to worship the CREATOR rather than CREATION. To be sure, we appreciate, protect and cherish creation - but we do so because God is the author - and we honor the author by cherishing the work of the Creator. There is a subtle, but important difference here, and is the foundational theology of faith.
The creation story of Genesis 1 serves to enlarge our vision of God and to appreciate the enormity of God. Words cannot capture the fullness of God and so we allow creation to speak, even knowing that creation is a mere glimpse of the immensity of God.
How big is your God? Or perhaps better stated, how big is God to you? How much time have you devoted to understanding the enormity of the One who created all that is. Is God bigger than your worries, frustrations, and anxieties? Is God bigger than your joys, delights, and desires? Perhaps more important, are you a worshiper of one God, or have you allowed other gods (knowledge, power, status, money, etc.) to become a god in your life?
Again, these are not easy questions, but they are important as we enter the story and find our place therein.