Genesis – “Now the Earth was formless and empty” (Genesis 1:2)

The profundity of the first two chapters of Genesis, God’s account of creation, is not lost in its brevity. The first statement verse 1, God created everything – The heavens and the earth. The second statement verse 2, the earth was formless and empty. The third, from verse 3, over a period of six days, the heavens and the earth are given form and are filled. Creation, from the beginning, is described as a functional existence rather than a material existence. We may rightly observe that from the beginning God had a plan; God is personal, relational and also purposeful. …He did not create it to be empty, but formed it to be inhabited. – Isaiah 45:18

So we enter once more into the mystery of God, the greatness of God as God. It would appear that all the angelic hosts of heaven were created in this beginning and the Fall of Satan occurred before Genesis chapter 3 otherwise the habitation of heaven occurred before the beginning of the creation of heaven ‘Itself’. The Fall of Satan and the Fall of Man does not represent a misplan for we read most amazingly (I find I mention this frequently) how God had a plan even before the creation and the Fall!  (Ephesians 1:4). The plan involved Eden lost (Gen 3) and Eden restored (Rev 21-22). So the whole Bible, from the beginning, tells the story of God’s plan unfolding, step by step, event by event, significant person (both great and small) by significant person, to whom God chose and equipped- before the beginning, in the beginning, from the beginning unto our present-day; and now onwards unto the very day Christ shall return = God’s Plan and Purpose for all creation. Christ is the focal point and the thread that holds everything together. Christ is within the Old Testament and fully revealed in the New Testament. How can God do all this? How can He?

In a nutshell, the Bible from Genesis 3 to Revelation 22 tells the story of a God who is reckless to get His family back. – Phillip Yancey

This week and next we will explore (just a little) on two of God’s attributes: God’s power and God’s knowledge. Remember, the mystery of God has been purposely made known to us – hence the Bible is ours.

A single word used to describe the power of God is Omnipotence. God is Omnipotent, that is, all-powerful. God displays his power from one generation to the next. Creation is the first. Implied at first in Genesis 1 then amplified throughout the rest of Scripture, God created and brought into existence that which previously did not exist before. The term, Creation ex nihilo is given for this. In other words, God created out of no previously existing materials; he created everything, even empty space, from nothing- (Col 1:15-17). This is important for how can God be Omnipotent in the fullest sense of “Other” outside of his power and jurisdiction also pre-existed? The Bible attests to God being Sovereign, that is, God has authority over everything – With my great power and outstretched arm, I made the earth and its people and the animals that are on it, and I give it to anyone I please.   (Jer 27:5)

It is most interesting to listen to the likes of Prof Brian Cox (and others) speak on the Universe. Looking back on what can be discovered about beginnings and most recently on where the Universe is heading in the future. Theories are put forward but it seems not uncommon to hear, “we just don’t know”. With all our modern telescopes and space exploration, no other lifeform has been found. Don’t you think there is a message in planet earth standing alone in such a vast, vast front and back yard?

The Bible does not offer theory nor a scientific explanation but it does proclaim a definitive and precise answer: the self-revealing God who is omnipotent and sovereign over all brought it all into being, into existence, and for a purpose. The profundity within the brevity proclaims God as God and having no rivals.

To speak then of God as being omnipotent is to reflect on such power displayed as we read the Scriptures. This we find in the purposes of God unfolding and moving unto completion. We may note the miracles in both Old and New Testaments. Miracles as ‘Acts of God’; wonder that would cause mankind to take notice. We may note those ‘quieter’ moments, like Abraham looking to forward God’s plan his way through Ishmael; God said it was to be his way through Sarah with the tag, “Is anything too hard for the Lord?” (Gen 18:14).

We must mention the power and decisiveness displayed in the announcements and preparations for the coming of Christ, like, Isaiah 53, Who has believed our message…. The power of God, Jesus, King of Kings, born in a stable. The arrogant and naïve words of Pilate, Don’t you realise I have power to either free you or to crucify you? (John 19:10)

The power of God in the cross. The power of God that raised Jesus from the dead…..we may take heart in our times as the apostle Paul tells of God’s, incomparably great power for us who believe. (Eph 1:19). Our God, the God of creation, is the one who promises to stand with us as we would stand for him as his disciples, living and proclaiming the purposes of God in Christ. We must not step aside from this mission. God’s purposes continue in our day to day and God continues to choose the likes of us who have received Christ as Saviour and Lord.

PRAYER: God is omnipotent as he was yesterday and will be at the end of the Ages, so our prayer remains, “….your Kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven….”. How might this encourage and lead you into prayer this day?

 

HYMN: Standing on the Promises of God by Selah
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=txAxJfFw7es

Standing on the promises that cannot fail, when the howling storms of doubt and fear assail,
By the living word of God I shall prevail, standing on the promises of God.