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Reflections on Genesis 1:26-2:3 part 2


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"he rested on the seventh day from all his work" (Genesis 2:2)

Reflections on Genesis 1:26-2:3 part 2


A New Creation


The creation of the universe also recalls the creative activity of God in our lives. When someone becomes a Christian he is a new creation: “if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation” (2 Corinthians 5:17). God sets to work to overlook, guide and provide for the growth of that new life:
may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it. (1 Thessalonians 5:9.)
Just as when he created the universe we can imagine God also placing each piece of the jigsaw puzzle of our lives into its correct place. As we sometimes resist one piece is momentarily set aside and another piece inserted until he comes to the final piece to complete the picture of our life and he stands back to admire his work and his beautiful creation and we finally come to rest in union with him, our seventh day, our day of rest: “He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it.”

The Light of the World

In that new creation first comes light, Jesus Christ, whom we welcome into our lives and to whom we consecrate our lives:
I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness but will have the light of life. (John 8:12)
Just as the first creation of the universe needed light to begin, so does the creation of our new self.

once you were darkness, but now in the Lord you are light. Live as children of light ... and Christ will shine on you. (Ephesians 5:8, 14)
Only when we are penetrated by the light of God (“let there be light”) can we walk in the light. God’s light will shine in every dark recess of our being as we are gradually transformed into his image and likeness, just as in the creation in Genesis.
What we do know is this: when he is revealed, we will be like him, for we will see him as he is. (1 John 3:2)
Man’s role in creation is of the highest order, complete dominion, which is similar to that of God himself, who is Lord of creation.


Authority is Service

Man is the steward of God entrusted with the conservation and safekeeping of the whole of creation. Again, in order to do this correctly and efficiently we must be in tune with God, with his ways and his will. If we are out of harmony with God we are also out of harmony with the universe and in line with self and greed which leads to disaster and destruction. In order to exercise true dominion we need to empty self otherwise there is an abuse of authority for selfish ends. The concept of authority in Christian living is essentially service, not power ‘over’ people and things
whoever wishes to be great among you must be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you must be your slave; just as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life a ransom for many.’ (Matthew 20:26-28)
That is why we must submit to one another and why self-assertion has no place in Christian living: “Be subject to one another out of reverence for Christ.” (Ephesians 5:21) If we are not submitted one to another we lack reverence for Christ. These are powerful words that are vitally important for any Christian community. Self-assertion leaves no place for the guidance of the Holy Spirit and destroys communities. We might do well to examine ourselves and ask forgiveness for those occasions on which we have become inordinately attached to our opinions and asserted ourselves to the detriment of our Christian community. If we want to be true crusaders of the Holy Spirit we must empty ourselves as Christ did and let the power of the sword of the Spirit lead us into the spiritual battle against the darkness within. This lies at the heart of true consecration.
Take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Pray in the Spirit at all times in every prayer and supplication. (Ephesians 6:17, 18)
The mentality of this world would find it strange that we should speak of submission, humility, service and the emptying of self in relation to dominion and domination, but this is the logic of God:

For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways, says the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. (Isaiah 55:8, 9)

Man is to dominate creation by serving both it and God, by looking after it and preserving it on his behalf. We are stewards of all that has been created. This means everything we have the use of must be orientated towards the will of God, who is the owner or Lord of creation. We might have many things or few, the fact remains we own nothing; everything belongs to the Creator, our house, our children, our thoughts, ourselves. Nothing is ours. Detachment is an indication of spiritual maturity. Am I so attached to my ideas that they clash with those of others and create division? Am I so attached to my children as to hinder their freedom of the sons of God? Are we so attached to our wallet as to become deaf to the needs of others? If God has our wallet, he has us. Although we own nothing, it takes a Christian time to adjust his life to this truth. God will surely allow us to face circumstances that will reveal to us the extent to which we are attached to what we possess and when that time comes, if we are really guided by the Holy Spirit, we shall make the right choices.

Just as man is in the image and likeness of God, so his role and function in creation are similar to God's. God, as Creator, is Lord of creation in the absolute sense and man is lord of creation as representatives of God. Man can choose either to live in accordance with this sublime vocation or not. At the heart of such a decision lies the acceptance or non-acceptance of the first sentence of Scripture "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth". If man is not faithful to such a vocation inevitably he exercises his dominion, no longer on behalf of God, but in favour of self. As we know, selfishness brings self-destruction and the destruction of just relationships between man and man, man and society and man and rest of creation. If life is not orientated towards God it has no stable or permanent orientation but is dependent on circumstances, people and private individual interests.

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