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Showing posts with label Genesis 1. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Genesis 1. Show all posts

Monday, March 14, 2022

Creation: Day 4 - Sun, Moon, and Starts

The world we live in is breathtaking and complex.  The glory of it all points to Something/Someone greater than ourselves.  Who is this Creator who hung the sun, moon, and stars?  What does the story of creation in Genesis tell us about the Creator’s character?

Genesis was written to help us know the Truth about God.  The creation story reveals the character of God and the life He offers us.  If you want to know God and why we are here, you can find out by studying the story of creation in Genesis.

Genesis 1:14-19
14 Then God said, “Let lights appear in the sky to separate the day from the night. Let them be signs to mark the seasons, days, and years. 15 Let these lights in the sky shine down on the earth.” And that is what happened. 16 God made two great lights—the larger one to govern the day, and the smaller one to govern the night. He also made the stars. 17 God set these lights in the sky to light the earth, 18 to govern the day and night, and to separate the light from the darkness. And God saw that it was good.

19 And evening passed and morning came, marking the fourth day.

On the fourth day, God created the sun, moon, and stars.

Before we go any further, we need to consider the magnitude of this claim.  The Greeks and Romans and many others civilizations saw the sun, moon and stars and believed they were gods.  It is no wonder.  One cannot help but be in awe of these mysterious heavenly bodies floating across our sky.  However, Genesis claims that even these heavenly bodies are a creation of the One, True, and Living God.

This was an amazing testament to the early readers of Genesis about the power and majesty of God.  The Moon has a mass of approximately 81 Quintillion Tons.  Yet it travels around the earth at the blazing speed of 2,288 miles per hour.  At this speed, it still takes a little under 28 days to go all the way around the earth.  


Our Sun is even more impressive.  The sun looks small to us because it is 93 million miles away.  It’s so far away it takes about 8 minutes for sunlight to reach us.  It’s a good thing it is so far away or we would be incinerated.  The surface of the sun is 10,000 degrees F, but that’s nothing.  The core of the sun is believed to reach 27,000,000 degrees F!  The sun is huge!  If the Sun were a hollow ball, it would take 1 million earths to fill it up!

Genesis makes a stunning claim.  The creation of the sun, moon, and stars was no big deal for God.  He simple said, “Let lights appear in the sky…”  Psalm 33:6 puts it this way, “The LORD merely spoke, and the heavens were created. He breathed the word, and all the stars were born.”  Wow…

The sun is only one of the gazillion stars in space.  There are so many stars in the Milky Way galaxy that if we counted one star every second it would take 2,500 years to count them all! *The Milky Way galaxy is so large, it would take 100,000 years to cross it if we could travel at the speed of light – 186,000 miles per second.

If our whole solar system—the sun with its 9 orbiting planets---was the size of a quarter, the Milky Way Galaxy would be the size of the North American Continent.  Where is the quarter?  All this God breathed into existence, but it gets even more mind boggling.

The Milky Way galaxy is only one among a hundred billion other galaxies—each galaxy filled with hundreds of billions of stars with orbiting planets!  This is a composite picture of the known universe.  Somewhere inside there is a dot that is the Milky Way galaxy.  Somewhere inside that tiny dot is our solar system of the sun and 9 planets…  “The LORD merely spoke, and the heavens were created. He breathed the word, and all the stars were born…”  How great is our God!

The sun, moon, and stars point us to God.

Genesis tells us God created these “lights” to be signs for us.  Through them, we know the time of day and the seasons.  But the sun, moon, and stars can guide us to even deeper understanding.  

The Prophet Isaiah said in 40:25-26 – “To whom will you compare me? Who is my equal?” asks the Holy One. Look up into the heavens. Who created all the stars? He brings them out like an army, one after another, calling each by its name. Because of his great power and incomparable strength, not a single one is missing.”

When we see the sun, moon, and stars, it gives us a sense of the magnitude of God’s power.  It reminds us how big God is and how small we are.  This—if anything—should cure us of our selfish misunderstanding that life is all about us.  And yet, the Bible also tells us God knows exactly how many hairs you have on your head (Luke 12:7).  God is infinite enough to create a universe too big for us to comprehend and yet He is personal enough to be interested in every single hair and the DNA inside every cell of your body!

God gives us guides so we can know Him.

All of Creation guides us to know God.  As Romans 1:20 says, “Ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.”

However, God doesn’t stop with astrological and natural witnesses.  God goes even further.  He gives us people to guide us to Him.  Think about your own life.  There have probably been people who have taught you, inspired you, encouraged you, and helped show you the way.  Do you realize that God put these people in your life to help you?  God wants you to know Him and He often uses special people to help you.  You will probably never know how many prayers have been said on your behalf by people who care about you?  

God also gave us the Bible to guide us to Him.  Psalm 119:105 says, “Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path.”  The Bible is an amazing tool to help you know God.  Everything you need to know for salvation is written there.  Even more amazing, the Bible is the Living word of God.  That means you can read it as God speaking to you at this very moment.  If you open your heart to hear God’s voice, you can hear Him guiding you in your moment of need.

The greatest guide God gives us so we can know Him is Jesus Christ…

We can look at creation and know that there is a God and that He is incredible and that we are so small.  But God sent Jesus so that we can know for sure that this incredible God is deeply concerned about us.  John 3:16 says, “For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.”

Imagine, God made a universe that is 96 billion light years in diameter.  (It would take 96 billion years for a beam of light to get from one side of the universe to the other).  We cannot even comprehend how incredible God is, and yet He is so interested in you that He sent His one and only son to personally guide you to know God.

You might be thinking, “A God like that could never be interested in me.”  YES HE IS!  He would do anything to have a personal relationship with you!  He has done everything to have a personal relationship with you.  The only thing left is for you to choose to have a relationship with God.


On behalf of this incredible God, I have the privilege today of inviting you to have a relationship with the One, True, and Living God of the Universe.  The One who made it all, invites you to choose a relationship with Him. Why don't you pray to Him right now? You don't have to use any special words. Simply talk to Him the way you would talk to a loving father. He'll listen and understand.

Tuesday, March 1, 2022

Creation: Day 2 - Sky

The world we live in is breathtaking and complex.  The artistic genius of it points to Something/Someone higher, greater, more wonderful than we can even imagine.  Who is this Creator who set the world in motion?  What does the story of creation in Genesis tell us about the Creator’s character?

Long before science existed, people were already asking questions about how the world began.  We want to know where we came from.  We want to know Who made us.  We want to know why we are here.  Genesis was written to speak to the mysterious longings within our hearts to know the Truth about God.  The creation story reveals the character of God and the life He offers us.  If you want to know God and why we are here, you can find out by studying the story of creation in Genesis.

Genesis 1:6-8
6 Then God said, “Let there be a space between the waters,
to separate the waters of the heavens from the waters of the earth.” 7 And that is what happened. God made this space to separate the waters of the earth from the waters of the heavens. 8 God called the space “sky.”

And evening passed and morning came, marking the second day. On the second day, God created the sky. At the time Genesis was written, people observed the world around them and tried to understand. They looked up into the blue sky and it reminded them of a vast ocean of water. *Yet, they could clearly see that the air above them was invisible. So it seemed there was an empty space between the blue “water” above and the water and land upon which we stand here on earth.

How would you describe the sky if you had never been told a scientific description of it?  Suppose you had no way of going up into the sky or into space to look around and measure what you found.  How would you explain this mysterious existence of earth below and blue sky above?

Children are inquisitive.  They want to understand the world around them—even before their minds are capable of grasping it.  Parents often struggle to answer their questions.  One day a 5-year-old boy asked his father if a stick was alive.  “No.  This stick is not alive.”  “But it comes from a tree.  Is a tree alive?” Asked the son.  “Yes, a tree is alive.”  “Then why isn’t this stick alive?”  How would you answer this child’s question in a way that they could understand?  Even more challenging: how would you explain the same thing to a dog or a cat?

How difficult it must be for an infinitely intelligent Creator God to explain the intricate details of His creation to people whose thinking is so limited.  This was especially true thousands of years ago when Genesis was written.  So God used words that made sense to ancient people.  He describes the sky or atmosphere as a “space” between the waters of the sky and the earth below. 

The Hebrew word is translated “firmament” in KJV.  This gives the impression that the sky is firm to hold up the blue expanse that we see above us.  God named the sky Shamaym, “heaven.”  The word means lofty—the home of God. God beckons us to reach for higher ideals. God created within each of us a desire to reach for something higher.  We could not even imagine God if it were not so.  One cannot help but look up at the sky and wonder about it.  We lay in the grass on a pretty summer day and stare up at the mysterious clouds above.  What are they made of?  What do they feel like?  They look like giant cotton balls floating in the sky.  It was not until the 1903 that man successfully built an airplane and soared through the sky.  However, people have watched birds soaring among the clouds since the very beginning, and we have longed to be up there with them.  It took thousands of years of longing, stretching, reaching before humanity was able to achieve our dream of flight.  If we never had the ambition to fly through the magnificent sky, we would never have achieved flight. We don’t just long for a higher altitude. God created us to yearn for higher ideals.  If we were just another one of the animals, we might only care about the basics that all animals need to survive—food, water, shelter, reproduction.  Yet the human spirit longs for higher ideals.  We value faith, hope, and love.  Our greatest joys in life come when we realize these; our greatest sorrows are when they are missing. Faith and Hope are two higher ideals God gives us. Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.” (Hebrews 11:1)  Having faith gives you a distinct advantage.  If Orville and Wilbur Wright never had faith that flight was possible, they never would have risked the dangers of flight or the ridicule of those who did not believe it was possible.  The greater rewards in life are rarely within plain sight.  Faith enables you to push yourself beyond the limits of what is immediately visible.  Faith also empowers you to trust others.  Trust is the bond that enables people to work together—as husband and wife, as parents and children, as co-workers, as soldiers in an army, or as a church full of people who can count on each other.  Without trust, we must do everything on our own power—which is very limited.  But when we can trust others, we can work together as a group and accomplish so much more. Ultimately, faith allows us to trust the Creator.  Just because a person believes God created the world does not ensure they trust God.  Many people do NOT trust God.  We see the same mistrust played out in many religions—including biblical Judaism—where sacrifices were made to appease the gods.  Such religious practices reveal a deep mistrust of divine power.  Yet God turns this whole religious practice of sacrifice upside down through Jesus Christ.  Instead of people making a sacrifice for God, God—in Christ—sacrifices Himself for us.  God has done everything possible to show He is trustworthy.  Now it is our choice whether we will take hold of the higher ideals of faith and hope.  Do you have faith in God? Do you have hope? Love is the highest ideal for which God beckons us to reach. 1 Corinthians 13:13 says, “Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love.”  We were created for love. There are 21 definitions for the word love on  However, the Greek word 1 Corinthians uses is “Agape,” which is “self-giving love, expressed freely without calculation of cost or gain to the giver or merit on the part of the receiver.”  The clearest demonstration of love is found in the life of Jesus Christ.  By all accounts, Jesus was an extraordinary man.  A man who can heal the blind and walk on water could have gained anything he wanted—power, wealth, prestige.  However, Jesus refused to seek anything for himself.  Instead, he gave up even the basic things most people desire—a way to make a living, a wife, children—and he dedicated his life to helping others.  We have seen a few exceptional people, like Mother Theresa, who lived a life of sacrificial love, but Jesus went even further.  Jesus showed us the greatest love of all when he laid down his life for the world. Jesus didn’t just die for his friends.  He sacrificed his life for people he’d never met—people like you and me.  He died for people most might overlook—the outcast, the forgotten, the neglected.  He died for people most might find despicable—those who have cheated, abused, murdered.  Jesus even died for those who drove the nails through his feet and hands into the cross.  He said, “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing.” (Luke 23:34) When Jesus died on the cross, he demonstrated the highest form of love.  We admire his self-sacrificing love.  Somehow, it speaks to our hearts.  We know it is good.  We know it is right.  It awakens a longing within us to reach for this kind of higher love—even when it seems out of reach.  However, just as early people must have thought flight was out of reach, we hope that—with God’s help—we might one day love like Jesus.  The Truth is, we can love like Jesus.  With man it is impossible, but all things are possible with God.  And God beckons us to reach, to stretch, to grow toward love. Closing Whenever you look up at the fluffy white clouds that float high above us in God’s beautiful sky, remember to reach for the higher virtues in life: faith, hope, and love. Pray and ask God to help you. And then, keep reaching for the highest ideals in life.