From our earliest childhood most of us have heard the story of creation that is found in the first chapter of Genesis. This passage is not just prose; it is more like poetry. We know what the poet wants to emphasize by the phrases that are repeated throughout: “Let there be … And God saw that it was good …”
God has only to speak the word, “Let there be light, or vegetation or human beings,” and it happens. A loving glance, a loving word and something that was never before comes into being. Creation comes forth in love. No wonder it is so good! The very essence of the earth is its goodness.
Humanity is given dominion over the earth. The word “dominion” has often been misunderstood. To some it means to dominate the earth, to bring nature under our power. This attitude has led to much abuse of the world as we know it. The world’s resources are being expended at a rapid pace. Worldwide pollution is a growing threat. Is this what god intended for humanity to do? Does dominion mean domination? Not at all. God has created us and invited us to work as co-creators with him. This means that we should have the same attitude toward the natural world that God has. We should see it as good. We should value it as God does, and we should hold it with the same love that God does.
As we watch the world come to new life in the springtime, we should become aware that creation is not a once-and-for-all act of God, but is ongoing. Creation continues in the natural world and in us. We are called to help that creation to continue.
In the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Colossians, he had this to say, “The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.”
These verses from Paul tell us that all creation is connected to Jesus, God’s son, who himself became a part of our world. Just as our bodies are of the earth, so were the elements of Jesus’ human flesh from the earth. Jesus is in the world, and the world is held in Jesus. The Incarnation of Christ means that the earth is made holy and good!
Today, I would like to ask you to pause for at least a few moments to be aware of the many ways that our world is being polluted and diverted from the sacred purpose for which God created it. And then pray for God’s forgiveness for our past poor stewardship of God’s good creation and determine for yourself to change any of the ways that you might have been less of a careful steward than you might be.
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