Monday, October 12th Genesis 1:26-31

Then God said, “Let us make humankind in our image, according to our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the wild animals of the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth. ”So God created humankind in his image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the air and over every living thing that moves upon the earth.” God said, “See, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit; you shall have them for food. And to every beast of the earth, and to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, everything that has the breath of life, I have given every green plant for food.” And it was so. God saw everything that he had made, and indeed, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day. Genesis 1:26-31

If you listen to the creation stories as they are intended to be heard – as theological arguments toward viewing all of life in a certain manner – these short verses tell us many things.

They tell us that life is relational. Life is connected. Beginning with our grounding in our Creator, everything is connected – physically and spiritually. Because we are grounded in God, we are relationally connected to everything God creates.

They tell us that we, and everything else we see, hear, touch, taste and experience, are not accidental. We are here, we are alive, we have reasons for being.

They tell us that creation is incredibly diverse. There is no way to capture this diversity in language so symbol is used. Fish, bird, cattle and creeping thing represents the incredible diversity of the animal world. The same with seeds and plants. And that same with “male” and “female” as we all recognize that gender is only one aspect of our humanity that distinguishes us from one another.

And they tell us that we have a purpose. We are to take care of creation even as creation takes care of us. We are created to work.

They tell us that, down to the deepest roots, life not only “is” but life is good. Life is very good.

But the sad fact is that life isn’t terribly good for everybody and life certainly doesn’t feel good all the time. When the earth quakes beneath our feet and the water rises, thousands die as we have seen recently in Asia, the Philippines and Thailand.

When we don’t have access to the good food and water which the earth produces, we die of hunger and thirst. Millions die every day. When health care is reduced to a tradeable commodity rather than a human right, many die needlessly.

When the systems we live within that allow us to trade our skills for the means of sustaining our lives falter, we can find ourselves suddenly cut off and cut out. We live not only in material need but in emotional anguish as we wonder where we lost our sense of purpose. Over 15,000,000 able-bodied Americans are not enjoying a day off today, they are suffering from a lack of meaningful work and good paying jobs.

Creation is very good. But many things seem seriously broken.

Let us pray: Dear Lord, we trust your Word. We trust in the goodness of your love and the goodness of creation. But we live in the midst of brokenness that sometimes seems overwhelming. Hear the cries of those in need and open the ears of those in positions to be helpful. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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3 Responses to “Monday, October 12th Genesis 1:26-31”

  1. Nancy B Says:

    Well said Reverend. Thank you

  2. Pat Booth Says:

    Dear Pr. Nelson,

    This is the most meaningful explanation I’ve ever heard/read for the creation– Theological arguments for viewing life as relational, purposeful, diverse. I’ve read the next three days, but this is the one I’ll remember. So glad you are back.

    Pat

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