Beginning at the Beginning

Friends,

Christian posted a short exercise in theology at Church Voices a few days ago. That I think you should take 60 seconds of your time to read.

He wrote:

I’m currently reading the book Total Truth by Nancy Pearcey.  In it she proposes Creationism as foundational to communicating the gospel. I have to agree. The story of Jesus’ death on the cross only makes sense in light of creation. Which is why it can be difficult to evangelize in cultures (such as ours) that declare that we are only a part of nature which has it’s roots in itself (Darwinism is a form of this naturalistic worldview).

He’s right. To further the problem is that many preachers are simply terrified to preach it (creation). To make matters worse, those who do preach creation (that is, Genesis 1 & 2 as historical accounts of human origin and not, necessarily, the popular creationism so often mocked by the secular humanists of our culture) simply do not understand the profound theological ramifications of Genesis 1 & 2 (and 3-50!) so they preach Creation not as something historical, but as a mere poem or an allegory or something merely polemical. But as my professor stated so beautifully, there can be no true doctrine of atonement apart from a doctrine of creation that begins in Genesis 1.

In fact, 3 of the four Gospels understood this all too well and began their Gospels in this way (Matthew, Mark & John), that is, by referring us back to creation before pointing us forward to Jesus. Their understanding is that the person and work of Jesus are only properly understood when the world belongs to God and is His to redeem. To take it a step further: they understand that the work of Jesus actually began at the creation. Apart from this, Christianity is yet one more myth among myths (and likely not a very good one). But creation is also foundational to the writings of Paul (see in particular Colossians and Romans), John (the Revelation), and Peter (see 1 & 2 Peter).

In fact, a careful reading of the Bible demonstrates that what took place at the beginning, the record of which is found in Genesis, is crucial to every page of the Bible. Creation permeates the Psalms, is underscored by the Prophets, and is the foundation of the Law. It is hard, difficult, impossible to understand the 66 books that make up the Christian Scriptures apart from understanding the very first verse.

Indeed, I agree with Christian (and his wise 4 year old daughter): When it comes to our preaching and teaching: Let’s begin at the beginning.

Always For His Glory!

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  1. Hi Dan,

    Thanks for your insightful ideas.
    It seems that atheists and other skeptics often understand the importance of Genesis 1-11 better than those Christians who try to introduce evolutionary ideas to the Bible. T.H. Huxley, “Darwin’s bulldog”, for instance lamented the Christians who thought the first chapters of the Bible were something else than history. Jesus did not die for an allegory but to redeem sin that came into the world through a real event in history.

  2. Joel,

    Thanks for stopping by. I haven’t posted much on evolution and creation lately. When I first started blogging, it was a big deal. Lately, not. I think you are right though about Christians who fail to understand the serious theological implications of a properly grounded creation narrative. That is, the Holy Spirit told Moses to write the way he wrote for a reason: He began at the beginning. That must mean more than just ‘here’s a nice allegory’ to get things going. I contend that if Genesis 1:1 is not true, then I don’t seriously think the rest of the Bible is either.

    jerry

  3. Mike McCants

    same response here as my others




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