Tuesday, February 17, 2015

The Creative Power of God in Your World

READ: Genesis chapter 1

The Bible starts at a dizzy pace, doesn’t it? I mean, if I were reading the Bible for the very first time – I just picked it up and started at the beginning – I think I’d get to the end of chapter one and say to myself, “This book’s going to be a page-turner.”

It’s a gripping opening. And there are literally thousands of sermons waiting to be preached out of just this first chapter of Genesis. Because it reveals so much about God; about His nature and His character. We could preach this morning about Him being eternal (“in the beginning God”); we could preach about …
· His creativity
· His almighty power
· His holiness
· His providential care
· His fatherhood
· That He is one God, but a trinity of Persons

And on and on - it’s all right here on the first page! So much about the greatness of God.

As I was reading it again recently, I began to think about the Creation account and what we see here of God’s power, and suddenly God was speaking to me about that creative ability of His that is still at work today.

As far as we know, God’s not creating planets or stars or animal species any longer. He has completed it, and that work came to an end. But Jesus said in John 5, “My Father has been working until now, and I have been working.” Another translation says: “My Father never stops working”.

God is always active – He speaks today and things happen. Romans 4:17 says that Abraham “believed God who gives life to the dead and calls (present active tense) those things which do not exist as though they did.” Abraham dared to believe that the great Creator STILL speaks and things are brought into being by that word of His mouth. And therefore nothing is impossible with God.

As we look together at Genesis 1 – the very foundation of the world – I want you to see that the same, unchanging God who did all this wants to move by His power in your life today, and create something for His glory.

There is a law of physics known as the 2nd law of thermodynamics – you may have heard it quoted before because it is a fundamental principle of physics which (if it’s true) means that the bankrupt theory of evolution was never possible in the first place. So it’s a law that is often raised in debates against evolutionists. The 2nd law of thermodynamics says, basically, that in every process – physical, natural, biological, industrial or technological – if something which is in a state of order is left alone, without any force or influence being applied to it, it will not “improve” but rather it must move to a state of disorder and then to a state of chaos.

You know that! Your car rusts, your clothes wear out, your house will eventually crumble. And single cell blobs do not “crawl out of the primeval swamp” and evolve themselves into complex life forms like animals and human beings. It’s not physically possible! It’s nonsense.

But I want to look at that law (the 2nd law of thermodynamics) for another reason. Not only is it a very convincing argument against evolution – it also illustrates something that is equally true in the spiritual realm. Whenever we leave God out of our lives, anything that was working grinds down to disorder, and ultimately to complete chaos and devestation. Order returns to “void” without the creative, life-giving power of God.

The history of NATIONS is a testimony to this. To the degree that nations throughout history have honoured God, and heard His Word, they have experienced the hand of God in blessing. Where Christianity has flourished, there has been law and order, and great freedom and even prosperity. (“Righteousness EXALTS a nation…” ) But those nations who have rejected God for idolatry have receeded into gross darkness, anarchy and bondage.

You think about the United States, we have led the world in advancement, and have prospered – and that has been the legacy of the gospel light that our societies were founded upon. But today, that light is flickering at an all time low. One of the fastest growing religions in America  today is Islam. Most Americans today are in paganism. Many of our laws are no longer Christian. At the same time, some of the nations that were once in pagan darkness are beginning to blaze with the fires of Christianity. If that trend continues, then the tables will turn – God will exalt those nations to leadership.

Thank God there is coming a day (very soon) when “the glory of the Lord shall cover the earth as the waters cover the sea.” The King is coming! He will rule the nations with a rod of iron – His light will govern every place on earth; east and west.

We see it in the nations - there is this principle. And I want to apply it to our lives individually now. We’ll state it this way … Just as God created all things out of nothing - to the degree that we submit our personal world to God, He is able to create something beautiful even from calamity and chaos.

Just walk quickly with me through some things in this first chapter of Genesis. When we bring God into our world …


Verses 2-3. “…and darkness was on the face of the deep … Then God said, ‘Let there be light’; and there was light.”

Have you ever been out in the woods , away from any street light, on a moonless night with no stars? It is pitch black. So dark that you literally can’t see your hand in front of your face. Every step you take is unnerving because you don’t know where you’re treading next.

That’s a picture of what so many people’s lives are like. Without the light of God, without His truth, there is just darkness. People don’t know where life is taking them. They don’t know what the future holds. Everything is in uncertainty and confusion.  (Story about squad in the dark).

Imagine what the darkness was like on day one of creation, before God had established a single source of light. Intense darkness. But God spoke into that darkness: “Let there be light”, and all of creation just LIT UP. Sight and warmth was everywhere – in an instant!

God had to do that in my life. Thank God – it happened to me! Just like the Apostle Paul said in 2 Corinthians 4:6, “For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness WHO HAS SHONE IN OUR HEARTS to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.”

I was in darkness – I had no answers, I couldn’t hear God’s voice, I couldn’t grasp right from wrong / wise from foolish. But God spoke and everything changed. Night turned to day.

Some of you have loved ones who’ve heard the gospel countless times, but they’re still away from God. The fact is, you can put the truth right under their nose but they can’t see it because of the darkness. They need an infusion of God’s light so that they can see it. Don’t try to win the battle by debating and arguing – win it in prayer!  Win it by speaking the Word over their lifes.  Cry out to God until He shines His light into their life and they can see.

The ninth plague that Moses brought upon the land of Egypt, because Pharaoh wouldn’t let God’s people go, was the plague of darkness. Exodus 10:21-23 says that the darkness was so thick it could be “felt” – it was so intense that no Egyptian moved from their bed for 3 days. But while the Egyptians were in darkness, just down the road the Israelite slaves had light in their dwellings.

You know what that tells me? There may be darkness all around – but wherever God commands the light, it shines.

There are still dark moments in my life. Times I’m confused about what to believe, I can’t see which road to take. But as I seek the Lord, His light comes flooding in every time. I open up the Bible, and “the entrance of His Word brings light.”

When we bring God into our world, He turns the darkness to light.

Secondly, when we bring God into our world …


Verses 6-10. There’s light now, but still nothing is stable or organized in any way. But God speaks again, and this time separates earth and sky so there is an atmosphere. And then he speaks again, and the great continents of land form from the oceans. God brings everything together to become an ordered environment.

Have you ever felt like everything was out of order in your life – like nothing was fitting together properly as it should? I’ve heard people say things like: “Nothing ever works out right” or “my personal life’s a mess” or “my career’s in shambles” … “this is not how I planned life to be”.

There is only one sure way I know to have your life move from chaotic to real peace and order. You need God’s creative power. Put your life in His hands, let Him direct you, and obey what He says completely. If He can organize everything from revolving solar systems, right down to microscopic organisms – and have it all working in perfect harmony together – don’t you think He has the power and the wisdom to bring peace into your life, and to build the fragments into something that makes sense.

God has a plan for you. A perfect plan. And yet I know Christians who are still chasing their tails – their family life is dysfunctional, their finances are in a mess, they’re in relationship problems, they’re constantly in upheaval. Why? Because too many Christians are trying to live life according to their own wisdom to achieve their own desires. And when you’re calling the shots, God isn’t! And so you’re devoid of His creative power.

But the good news is that, if you’ll repent of that self-sufficiency and seek God’s wisdom to do it – there is no chaos too great that He can’t turn it to order.

When we bring God into our world …


Verses 11-13. God has a stable, organized environment now, but nothing’s growing yet. There’s no life. Until God speaks with creative power again, and immediately grass and herbs and fruit trees appear, and begin to flourish.

Some people could say that no matter what they try, nothing grows. Everything seems such a heart-breaking effort. There never seems to be any fruitfulness for all their hard work.

When Adam was expelled from the Garden, and intimacy with God was broken, God told Him that the ground was now cursed. Every blade of every crop would need to be produced by blood, sweat and tears. It wasn’t that lush garden any longer that just produced in perfection. Adam was cut off from God and it was all ruined. So he toiled for everything. Weeds overran everything. Proverbs 13:15 says, “The way of the transgressor is hard.”

Jesus said in John 15 that the way to have a fruitful life (a life that is productive, a life that blooms) is to be “connected” to Him. To be in vital union with Him. God’s power can transform you from barrenness to life.

Is life too hard today? Maybe you need to relinquish all those efforts, and build that relationship with God whose creative power brings life to the barren.

When we bring God into our world …


Verses 14-18. Before God hung the sun, moon and stars, there could be no fluctuation – no ebb and flow of the tides – no changing of the days. All there could be was the passing of time.

I hear people complain about the meaninglessness of life. Some get to the point that they’re even ready to give up on life – not for it’s hardships, but just it’s boredom; it’s monotony. No purpose.

That is what King Solomon found whenever he looked at life on earth without reference to God. You read his search in the Book of Ecclesiastes. He says “meaningless, meaningless – life is meaningless”. It’s all in vain – it’s just the passing of time. Without God we exist, but nothing more.

Only God can turn empty years into full seasons.

Here in Illinois we have 4 seasons. We’ve come into Autumn now – we’ll start to see all those beautiful browns and golds – the leaves will start falling from the trees. The winter will come. Cold days, snow and ice. Sitting by the fire in my easy chair and a throw over me.  Trying to stay warm.  Then we’ll be well and truly ready for the spring. The warmth starts to return – everything seems to brighten. And finally the Summer. Hot days, balmy nights – cook outs and time with the family.

Aren’t the seasons wonderful. Each of them has their own particular beauty. I wouldn’t mind living in a warm climate year round. But it sure beats living in   Alaska where it is always cold and dark.

I love the seasons. My God created that. He hung the stellar bodies in place, and marked out the seasons. Only HE can make the days and weeks flow together in rhythm. Only He can put meaning and purpose into life.

As a Christian we still experience difficult seasons – trials and hardships (there’s the winter as well as the spring). But God makes even those times have PURPOSE. You soon learn that “all things are working together for good for them that love God and are the called according to His purpose.” As you look back on tough times and see what God has done in your life through them, you’re even glad you went through them.

God turns empty years into full seasons.

When we bring God into our world …


Verses 20-25. So far there’s only plant life – the earth has no inhabitants. God speaks again, and the waters teem with life – every kind of fish and sea creatures. Schools and schools of millions of species and varieties. The air is filled with birds of all kinds. Then animals – so many exotic types – they fill the earth. From lack to abundance by the simple word of God’s mouth.

Without God, life is impoverished. And this has nothing to do with money. You can be the richest person in America – the richest in the world – and have a bankrupt life.

God has caused the waters, and the air, and the land in my world to teem with life. The more I yield to Him, the more His creative power can be active in my life, the more abundance flows.

Doors of opportunity in abundance. Joy in abundance. Revelation and truth in abundance. Abundant wisdom. All of God’s richest blessings.

Some people’s world is so small. So confined. They never see a new horizon possible. They need God to speak abundance into their life.

When we bring God into our world …


Verse 27. God finally created man and put him in the garden, but chapter 2 explains how  Adam wasn’t complete. Up until that point, after every act of creation God’s verdict was “it is good”. But when He created Adam he said: “it’s NOT good” – the creation was wonderful; Adam was a fine specimen. But it was “not good” that he was alone. So God created a woman, and brought her to Adam. He saw the need, and He created the answer by the word of His mouth.

How can you feel all alone among 6 billion people on this planet? People feel it every day! People who live in huge metropolises feel isolated and lonely.

But when God is in our world, His creative power can turn loneliness into love. First God filled my longing for love with His own self. Then he gave me Amberi. Then 2 great kids. Some awesome and loyal friends. The whole family of God. He fills my life with LOVE. He seems to have just continuously created it out of nothing! That’s His power.

Finally, when we bring God into our world …


Verse 28. When God had created everything, he gave Adam “dominion” – mastery – over it all. He said, you steward this. What an awesome responsibility – but Adam did it. He named the animals. He tended the garden. Everything was working. But again, when he and God were separated things were thrown into uproar. So for thousands of years man has been wrestling to control the great forces of creation that are in upheaval (Romans says that the whole creation is “groaning” because of the devastation of sin.)

People strive to be in “control” of their lives – to work everything out just as they think it ought to be – to please themselves. And the result is that their lives seem to get more and more OUT of control.

The funny thing is you need to do the opposite. Instead of grasping for control – you need to relinquish control to God. Let Him be the lord and Master.

You see, in God’s economy everything is back-to-front. Have you figured that out yet? The way to “greatness” – is DOWN – serving. The way to grow up strong in God, is to become more and more like a little child. It’s all back to front!

I was trying to undo the screws on a computer one day, and they wouldn’t budge. And someone saw me struggling, and had a look at it for me. “Oh,” they said, “these screws are reverse thread. You’re not undoing them, you’re tightening them even more. To undo them you have to go the other way – clockwise.” It took me 15 years to figure out how to use a screwdriver, and now they’ve changed the rules!

Everything in God’s kingdom is like that – it’s reverse thread! When you give up “control” to God – yield your will over to His, He doesn’t manipulate you like some robot or puppet with stringd. No. For the first time in your life, He GIVES YOU BACK real control in your life. He’s going to direct you, and lead you – but He enables YOU to manage life properly, with all His blessing.  Through His Word.

“The fruit of the Spirit is … SELF-CONTROL.” (Gal 6)
“God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of love and of power and of a SOUND MIND (self-control)” (2 Tim 1:7)


Don’t you want this Creator God – with all His divine energies and mighty power and unfathomable wisdom – don’t you want Him moving in your world?

All your situation is waiting for is one word from God.  He has given us His Word.  This book and all of it’s promises.  This book is alive. 

Just as God created all things out of nothing - to the degree that we submit our personal world to God, He is able to create something beautiful even from calamity and chaos.

He gives us “Beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness – that we should be called the planting (the creation) of the Lord!”

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