(Friends: Today begins what I am calling "The Saturday Series". Most Saturdays for the duration of this year, I plan on sharing a message that relates to the character and nature of God, and our response thereunto. I hope you will find it helpful, and as always, thanks for allowing us to send the devotionals to you. Glen).
The Saturday Series - 1
"Goodness and Greatness In Creation"
In the first verse of the Bible, God's reveals a primary ability, namely, His creativity. We also see by implication the primary truth of His character and nature, namely, of love.
"In the beginning, God created the heaven and the earth" (Genesis 1:1).
"God is love" (I John 4:8).
Scripture presupposes the existence of God in its first literary ray of light. The writer makes no effort to affirm or defend the fact of the Maker. Genesis rather speaks in its first statement to an action of God, namely, His origination of the physical universe. Someone exists who is greater than creation. In light of the vastness of the universe, along with its complexity and beauty, the Bible opens by revealing a Being of wondrous wisdom, knowledge, understanding, and power.
"His understanding is infinite" (Psalm 147:5).
"How unsearchable are His judgments, and His ways past finding out!" (Romans 11:33).
"Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding, abundantly above all we ask or think" (Ephesians 3:20).
We will forever consider the indescribable creativity of the Maker of all things. However, in the first verse of Genesis as amplified by the entirety of Scripture, we also see a display of winsome character beyond all imagining. God made something other than Himself despite the fact that He is perfectly fulfilled in Himself as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Acts 17:25). He made angels, the universe, and human beings not because of need, but rather because of desire. "Thou hast created all things, and for Thy pleasure they are and were created" (Revelation 4:11). Moreover, God's finds His pleasure not in pleasing Himself, but rather in meeting the needs and fulfilling the desires of others. "Charity (love) seeketh not her own" (I Corinthians 13:5). Thus, God made something other than Himself for the pleasure of bestowing His goodness to others who exist for the reception, enjoyment, and revelation of His loving unselfishness.
Sin entered the angelic, universal, and human equations, thus injecting darkness and chaos into the reception of the Lord's goodness. In the foreknowledge of His infinite understanding, God was well aware that this would happen. Even more, He knew that the presence of sin in creation would ultimately require His Son to suffer and die as a part of creation. He also knew that He would have to smite His Beloved with wrath and forsakenness in order to redeem creation from the ravages of unrighteousness. He nevertheless chose to create. No words can suffice to describe the character and heart of One who would purpose and execute such a determination. As wondrous as it is to consider the power of God in creation, the love He exercised thereby surpasses such greatness. Again, God chose to create in the full knowledge that doing so would lead to the savage murder of His beloved Son, and to His own execution of wrath upon the Lord Jesus for the benefit of those whom He made, and who rejected Him. Thus, we see marvelous greatness as the Bible opens in Genesis 1:1. But in the full light of Scripture, we see merciful goodness even more.
"The Lord is good to all, and His tendermercies are over all His works."
"Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain."
Weekly Memory Verse
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.