Athlete, God Creates

Read Genesis 1:1-27

Do you see the poetic symmetry of Genesis 1 displayed below?  Genesis 1:2 states that the earth was "formless and empty" when God first created it, but in days 1-3 God gives form to formlessness and God fills the emptiness in days 4-6.  The chapter is perfectly balanced . . .

Day 1 - Light                               Day 4 - "Lights" - Sun, moon, stars fills the "heavens"

Day 2 - Sea & Sky                       Day 5 - Fish & Birds fill the Sea and Sky

Day 3a - Land                              Day 6a - Land Animals fill the Land

Day 3b - Vegetation                     Day 6b - Humans fill the Land and are given vegetation (1:26-29)

              Day 7 - God Rests from the work of creating (2:1-3)

If you have read the Chronicles of Narnia, you may remember when C.S. Lewis writes about Aslan joyfully singing Narnia into being, reflecting the sense of joy and beauty in Genesis 1.  This poem or song makes a very clear statement about who created all things, but the poetic nature also shows that Genesis 1 is not trying to be a science textbook.  This understanding leaves room for differing views about the length of creation, the age of the earth, and the relation of Genesis 1 to some scientific theories.  While these questions are interesting and in some ways important, there are more essential questions raised by Genesis 1.

Questions for Reflection and Prayer

1. God made all things and therefore all things ultimately belong to God.  Every good thing is a gift to steward and enjoy, and a "window" to the goodness, power, beauty, etc. of God.  Is there a gift(s) from God that you are currently seeing as an end in itself  (human beauty/strength, food, etc.) rather than as a "window" to see and enjoy God?  Take some time to confess these things to God, receive God's forgiveness in Christ, and ask him to help you enjoy his gifts rightly.  

2. As you think about all that God has made, what are you particularly thankful for right now?  Take some time to worship and reflect on the awesome mind, power, creativity, and love of God that we see in creation.

3. Four times in 1:26-27 we're told that we are made in the image/likeness of God.  God made us to display or reflect his character and qualities.  Take some time to reflect on the amazing privilege, responsibility, dignity and worth that comes from being the image of God.  How do you see yourself reflecting God's character and qualities in your life?  Where are you struggling to reflect His image?

*This devotional series is written by the University of Virginia AIA Staff Team

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