Creation Topical Study

<p><font color="#0077c8"><span style="font-size: 28px;"><b><span class="heading-lg">Creation in Scripture</span></b></span></font></p><ul><li><span class="body-copy"><a href="https://preachingandworship.org/search/Genesis%201%3A1">Genesis 1:1</a>, God created the heavens and the earth</span></li><li><span class="body-copy"><a href="https://preachingandworship.org/search/Psalm%2019">Psalm 19</a>, the heavens tell of the glory of God</span></li><li><span class="body-copy"><a href="https://preachingandworship.org/search/Psalm%2024%3A1-2">Psalm 24:1-2</a>, the earth is the Lord&#39;s</span></li><li><span class="body-copy"><a href="https://preachingandworship.org/search/Psalm%2096%3A12-13">Psalm 96:12-13</a>, the trees of the forest sing for joy before the Lord</span></li><li><span class="body-copy"><a href="https://preachingandworship.org/search/Psalm%20148%3A3-6">Psalm 148:3-6</a>, all creation praises God</span></li><li><span class="body-copy"><a href="https://preachingandworship.org/search/Romans%201%3A20">Romans 1:20</a>, God&#39;s power and divine nature have been present since the creation of the world</span></li><li><span class="body-copy"><a href="https://preachingandworship.org/search/Romans%208%3A19-20">Romans 8:19-20</a>, all creation waits with eager longing to be restored</span></li><li><span class="body-copy"><a href="https://preachingandworship.org/search/2%20Corinthians%205%3A17">2 Corinthians 5:17</a>, is anyone is in Christ they are a new creation</span></li><li><span class="body-copy"><a href="https://preachingandworship.org/search/Colossians%201%3A15-17">Colossians 1:15-17</a>, the firstborn of all creation</span></li><li><span class="body-copy"><a href="https://preachingandworship.org/search/2%20Peter%203%3A13">2 Peter 3:13</a>, we are waiting for a new heaven and a new earth</span></li></ul><p><span style="font-size: 13.008px;"><strong><span class="heading-lg">Reflections about Creation</span></strong></span></p><p><span style="font-size: 13.008px;"><span class="heading-sm"><strong>Creator and Creation</strong></span></span></p><p><span style="font-size: 13.008px;"><span class="body-copy">The relationship between God as Creator and the physical creation can lead to some confusion. Orthodox Christian thought has long fought to maintain the clear distinction between God and creation, thus consigning to the category of error the teaching of pantheism that says that the universe itself is divine, that God and creation are essentially one and the same. In more recent times, a variation on this theme has developed in the form of panentheism, which teaches that creation exists somehow inside God &mdash; although God and creation are not strictly speaking the same thing, there is a sense in which the creation is to God what our bodies are to us. The creation is the body of God and needs to be honored as such. Many believe that panentheism likewise leads to error and confuses what needs to remain distinct; viz. Creator and creature/creation. The Old Testament scholar John Stek used to teach that Scripture is more apt to depict creation as &quot;the glory robe of God,&quot; a kind of lustrous garment that adorns the nature of God but that is as distinct from him as a sweater or overcoat would be to us humans. However, at the far extreme of maintaining a clear separation between God and creation is the heresy of Deism, which removes God so far from all things earthly or physical as to make God disinterested and uninvolved. To paraphrase C.S. Lewis, the Christian is always fighting on two fronts: to the Deist we need to make clear God&#39;s connection to cabbages and mountain streams, and to the pantheist we need to make clear the difference between Creator and all other creatures/creation artifacts, so that we do not fall prey to the sin of idolatry in worshiping something other than the one true God.</span> </span></p><p><span style="font-size: 13.008px;"><strong><span class="heading-sm">Creatio Continua</span></strong></span></p><p><span style="font-size: 13.008px;"><span class="body-copy">The so-called &quot;battle&quot; between creation and evolution in recent decades &mdash; and so an intense focus on what happened &quot;in the beginning&quot; in terms of cosmic origins &mdash; has tended to obscure a longstanding Christian emphasis on the ongoing nature of God&#39;s creative activity. God did not merely create all things way back when and then check &quot;creation&quot; off his &quot;To-Do&quot; list. God continues to create new life, new worlds, new daisies right up to this present time. Each newborn baby is as much a miracle of God&#39;s creative activity as the first person who ever appeared. God remains intensely interested in and involved in the act of creating. When the Hubble Telescope reveals a huge gaseous nebula in which new stars are being born even yet today, these stars are as much the handiwork of God as the first such nuclear furnaces that God made &quot;in the beginning.&quot;</span> </span></p><p><span style="font-size: 13.008px;"><strong><span class="heading-sm">Creation as God&#39;s Glory Theater</span></strong></span></p><p><span style="font-size: 13.008px;"><span class="body-copy">Particularly in the psalms but throughout all of Scripture (including the Prophets), the physical creation is depicted not only as displaying the majesty and power of its Creator but as also a source of abiding praise. Just by being what they were created to be, mountains and trees, stars and hail, mountain lions and songbirds form a kind of galactic choir that &mdash; to God&#39;s ears, anyway &mdash; sings as eloquently to God in choruses of praise as any human-composed hymn or symphony. When in the Book of Job God says that at the dawn of creation the morning stars sang together for joy, God does not appear to be speaking metaphorically!</span> </span></p><p><span style="font-size: 13.008px;"><span class="heading-sm"><strong>Creation Care</strong></span></span></p><p><span style="font-size: 13.008px;"><span class="body-copy">Scripture teaches that the creation itself is to be treated with care and respect by human beings, who were made in the image of God precisely to tend and keep God&#39;s handiwork on God&#39;s behalf. The physical creation is a matter of intense interest and investment for Christians, not only because every square inch of it belongs to God but also because Christ has now redeemed the creation and will restore and renew it to a New Creation as the climax of his saving and redeeming work. Christians who treat the physical world as temporary, of no lasting value, as something that will give way in favor of some ghostly realm of vapor and cloud, are missing Scripture&#39;s clear teaching that God loves the physical creation and in Christ has secured its future.</span></span></p>