Genesis: Then God said, ‘Let us make man in our image, in our likeness (Genesis 1:26)

Continuing on from last week: From the beginning (before the beginning) God had a plan according to his mind, his intelligence and his wisdom. We observe how in creation Man is the crowning glory and to Man and Man alone, made in the image of God, is tasked to rule and have dominion, to manage all that God had made on the earth. But such rule and delegated authority were always under God’s own rule as Sovereign Lord of all. God is purposeful and is such that he gave man purpose and responsibility.  But then, from Gen 3 and the Fall, Man’s rule, purposes and responsibility took a turn. Sin, from the beginning, moved Man outside of God’s purposes, and so coloured and redefined Man as he began to define himself defiant of God as Lord. God never let go of Man but set forth his plan from before the beginning to redeem Man. The ‘Thou shalt not’s of the Old Testament and the various and numerous lists and references to Man’s sinful nature and behaviours all point to Man’s divergent path from God’s purpose yet became/become God’s purpose towards not forsaking but guiding Man back and ultimately finding the means (through grace in Christ) to be saved out of slavery to sin. This is God’s story given to us in the Bible. Not unlike past generations, despairing voices today still cry out, ‘How much more destructive can Mankind become? How much more lust for power and self-rule can be manifested?

Even in such ‘early days’ as Genesis 6 God expressed his own despair, The Lord saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time. The Lord regretted that he had made human beings on the earth, and his heart was deeply troubled. – Genesis 6:5 Now the word ‘regretted’ has to be understood for in the next moment Noah comes into the picture and the next chapter of God’s plan unfolds. Remember this is God’s plan and God’s mind at work, not ours! God’s purpose was not changing because of the circumstance and plan B is enacted. It is all Plan A. we may note how Jesus described the end of days and God’s judgement, As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. – Matthew 24:36-39

Continuing from last week with the question, “Who is God!” Who is this, whom we claim we know as King of Kings and Lord of Lords? In part answer, we have said, God is all-powerful (Omnipotent). We can also say God is Omniscient, which is all-knowing. (The third attribute of God, he is Omnipresent, which is all present).

Who is God? We may say, God, is Himself. This also gives credence to his name given to Moses, “I am who I am”. God as himself is, “I Am”; and as “I Am” God is all-powerful, all-knowing and all present. God has no rivals but Man has created so-called rivals to whom names are given, even the one who says, “There is no God”.

Still, there are those who have taken the very name of God but still have created their own pathway. As we would listen to the Christian message- Christ died on the cross for sinful Mankind; Christ rose from the dead to defeat death and judgement sin deserves; in Christ is the new direction life takes to place us back into God’s purpose. The Christian gospel calls us to repentance- that is, to turn from my former ‘Life purpose’ and actively pursue the life that fits God’s plan. Paul the apostle puts it this way: “….since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its creator” (Col 3:1-14) NB: ‘being renewed in knowledge’.

Ever discovering who God is- “Who has known the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.” – 1 Cor 2:6-16

In Christ then, we are given (the gift of God) the very mind of God, limited, yes, but his mind none the less, that we would know his purposes. This is to enable and equip us to discover how to live and abide in Christ and his eternal plan. So the power of God and the knowledge of God is freely given in Christ. One thing we can’t receive is to be present everywhere BUT God’s plan is such that we can be present where we abide and also wherever all persons in Christ abide so the presence of God is purposed.

The knowledge of God turns our own knowledge upside down- What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived- the things God has prepared for those who love him- these are the things God has revealed to us by his Spirit.” – 1 Corinthians 2:9. For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved, it is the power of God. For it is written, ‘I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.” – 1 Corinthians 1:18-19; cf Isaiah 29:14

Genesis and the Garden of Eden gives the beginnings of purpose and purpose continues in spite of the Fall. How might you describe yourself at present in purpose? How might this lead you into prayer today?

HYMN: I am so Glad that Jesus Loves Me –

I am so glad that our Father in heaven tells of his love in the book he has given; wonderful things in the Bible I see; this is the dearest, that Jesus loves me.