|Vol. 13 No. 5 May 2011||
Ernest S. Underwood
Some time ago as I was taking a walk, I noticed a small blossom tucked away in a crack in the concrete walk. It was a tiny thing, and it looked so fragile. Years ago, some Christian lady wrote a book (booklet) entitled, Bloom Where You Are. As I saw the little flower, I thought of that title, and how this little plant was doing just that. How we need personally to learn this lesson. Sometimes, we will not do anything unless it is in the “Yard of the Month” bracket. Yet, Jesus said, “For whoever gives you a cup of water to drink in My name, because you belong to Christ, assuredly, I say to you, he will by no means lose his reward.” Here, He points out the fact that even the small acts of kindness and service, which go unnoticed by the masses, do not escape His attention. A visit to a sick friend, a card of sympathy or encouragement, a phone call to bring cheer to one who is in need of such, none of these go unnoticed by Him whom we serve. We are not told that “God so loved the rich, the well-liked of society, a certain race or ethnic group of people,” but that “He so loved the world” – the world of humanity, that He was willing to give His Son for each individual who composes that humanity. Are you ‘blooming where you are’?
There are two books of the Bible that begin with this particular phrase, “In the beginning.” The very first words laid out in Scripture bear these words: “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth” (Genesis 1:1). In the New Testament, John begins his epistle, by inspiration, with these words: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:1).
Both of these books introduce themselves by going back to the beginning. Yet, they both deal with very different facets of that beginning. When you put these two statements concerning the beginning of time together, they lead to a beautiful conclusion of the might and majesty of the creation.
John, in his writing, deals with the spiritual presence at the beginning of time. Unlike many in the modern world would have us to believe, there was “someone” or “something” present in the beginning. It was not simply an accidental “big bang,” but there was an intentional cause behind it. John wrote that the Word both “was with God,” and “was God.” This statement shows emphatically that there were multiple persons, but one being, present at the Creation: God. John continues by stating: “All things were made by him; and without him was not anything made that was made” (John 1:3).
John shows, in the first fourteen verses of the book, Who was responsible for the creation. It was the one Who was, “made flesh and dwelt among us” (John 1:14). It was none other than Jesus Christ. This proves the presence, not only of the Father, but of the entire Godhead at the creation of the world.
Though John shows the spiritual side of the beginning, Moses, in the Book of Genesis, lays forth the physical side. Just as important as Who did the creating is what was created. Moses begins Genesis by laying forth a premise: God created the heaven and earth. He, then, continues that he might prove that premise. Over the course of the next two chapters, God through Moses showed how everything that is, or has ever been, found upon the face of the earth came into being. Whether it was the creation of light on the first day, or the creation of man on the sixth day, the Bible clearly shows that all in the universe was created in that time frame. Paul emphasized the creative power of God (specifically Christ) as it was displayed in the creation when he wrote by inspiration, “For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist” (Colossians 1:16-17).
As sad as it is, there are many in the world, and some even in the church, who do not believe that God created all in six days. They believe in “Theistic Evolution,” the idea that God started the process, and then He let evolution take over. Yet, a study of Genesis One and John One leaves absolutely no room for such a conclusion.
From the verses that follow the three great words which open these two books, man has the ability to see a complete picture of the beginning of time – whether it is Who was involved, how it was done or what was accomplished. Let us always be mindful of what occurred, “in the beginning.”