From nothing at all to something so vast that our minds cannot comprehend it all!
From a void mass which existed in total darkness to a radiantly lighted, beautiful and amazingly complex creation!
All this work of God is recorded in just twenty-eight short verses in the first chapter of the Bible. Once again we assume that our readers believe the Scriptures to be the infallible, inerrant Word of God. They will, therefore, believe that all this work of God was performed in six successive days of twenty-four hours each. We do not purpose to say anything more about the God-dishonoring position of theistic evolution than to point out that the denial of the first eleven chapters of Genesis as fact is a denial of the whole of Scripture. For there are several elements in these eleven chapters that are presented elsewhere in Scripture, and emphatically so in the New Testament, as fact, and not fiction. The fall of Adam is presented as fact in Romans 5:12-19. Hebrews 11 is especially rich in presenting the incidents of chapters one through eleven of Genesis as fact. The offering of Abel is mentioned there as an act of faith. The translation of Enoch, the building of the ark by Noah, and the flood itself are presented alongside of facts that occurred after the history of these eleven chapters. Hebrews eleven draws no line between the deeds of Abel, Enoch and Noah and between those of Abraham, Moses and the rest of those mentioned in this chapter. John mentions the murder of Abel by Cain in I John 3:12 as a fact, not as fiction. Peter in I Peter 3:20 and II Peter 2:5, speaks of the flood and of the work of Noah in building the ark as cold, hard facts of history. And they, these theistic evolutionists, lose Christ too! And they are anti-Christian as well. For Christ Himself speaks in Matthew 24:37, 38 of the flood and of Noah’s deeds as facts, not fiction.
We do wish to point out, as our title suggests, that all this earthly creation was made for us. And then we mean both the heavens and the earth. Both were made for us. Although man was created to live on this earth, and will, after heaven and earth are united in Christ, live on the new earth, the heavens (note the plural) were also created for man. In the material heavens is his light plant, his furnace, his water system, his air conditioning system, and his clock to mark off his times and seasons. And though the earth may not be the center of the solar system, it is the most important body that “floats” in space. Here is life. Here God created man in His own image. Here, and here only, He sent His Son. And the sun, moon and stars serve that earth. The earth does not serve them.
We said heavens, because there is also a spiritual realm called heaven. This is the dwelling place of the angels and the place where God reveals Himself most intimately. This heaven was also created for man, not to dwell in (though for a time his soul may sojourn there) but to serve the inhabitants thereof, who are man’s servants. That is right. The angels are our servants. Hebrews 1:14 asks the question, “Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be the heirs of salvation?” Indeed, all these heavenly creatures also are yours!
As far as the earth is concerned, we would note that it was all prepared for man, and was fully furnished for him, before he was created to dwell upon it. If we may, we would liken it to a house which was not only built carefully with deep concern for all its details, but was also made with cupboard and pantry full of the food man would need when he appeared. It made life on this earth in every respect delightful, comfortable and enjoyable. Man’s food was there for the taking. All around was a blaze of color and beauty, of design and texture. God’s glory shone all around.
Consider these plants which were designed to provide man’s food. Today we speak of factories and of manufacturing plants. Why call them plants? They cannot compare with real plants. The plants which God created are the original and real factories which manufacture man’s food. Without them there is no life for man. They are his link with the earth from out of which he was created, upon which he depends, and to which he will return.
But we cannot eat the dust of the ground. It must be transformed into carbohydrates and fats and proteins. This the plants do for us. They manufacture our food. They, using the rain and the sunshine, change that dust with its minerals into grains, vegetables and fruits and a host of foodstuffs. They are indeed the original factories, or manufacturing plants. They are some very specialized factories, for plants only inches apart in the same soil, with the same amount of rain and sunshine will produce two fruits that are the exact opposites in nature. The one will produce a sweet fruit, the other a very bitter one. The one will bring forth food to nourish man’s life, the other a poison that will take his life away. And what does the theistic science worshipper say? Did our edible plants evolve from the poisonous, or did the poisonous evolve from the food bearing plants? How is it today that tares always chock out the grains, and the weeds destroy the valuable plants?
After the flood God gave man the flesh of beasts also for food. See Genesis 1:30 and Genesis 9:3. But even these creatures depend upon those plants for the support of their life. Some of these animals are strictly vegetarians, as the cow, the horse, the deer. Others are carnivorous, that is, will only eat meat, like the lion, and the tiger. Some, however, like the bear, eat berries and honey as well as fish, and flesh of beasts. It makes no difference, these animals that will eat only meat depend upon the plants to nourish the life of the animals whose flesh they eat. And we would have no flesh to eat, were it not for the plants that give support to the bodies of the beasts of the field. We would have no beef steak, no beef roast to eat. Take away all plant life, and you take away man’s life. It is not simply his dainties and delicacies that you take away. You take away his life. For you take away from him the link between him and the earth out of which he was formed. Evolution, both the Darwinian and the theistic, will concede that point. But they do not consider the origin of these creatures that are so important for our life to be a command by God to come forth out of the earth and to be the work of one day of twenty-four successive hours.
The evolutionist does not see these plants as given to man by God, but rather as producing man himself. After all, as far as the theistic evolutionist is concerned God was already making man when he made the plants. The Darwinian evolutionist says that man was on the way to appearing and evolving when the plants began to be formed in the process of billions of years. Scripture, and we hope to treat this more fully next time, presents the creation of the plants as something quite distinct from that of man. These plants were created for man, but they did not produce man. They produce for man, but man they do not bring forth indirectly by bringing forth the creatures that have power of moving around. Trees, plants and animals and man have this in common that they are all living creatures. But the plants rooted in the soil do not bring forth a living creature that overcomes this bondage to the soil, to move about at will.
These plants, together with all the earthly creation are ours by a wisdom of God that fills us with wonder. All these are ours not only for food, but also for shelter, for tools to work the earth, to produce our paper, even the rubber for our automobiles, and our coffins as well. Presently a tree of the cross will serve the payment for our sins and deliverance from the guilt and curse of sin.
However, when we say that all these are yours, there are two items that must be emphasized. These are yours, but not all men’s. Originally in Adam all the earthly creation, yea the whole universe was man’s to serve him and work for his good. The sun shone for man, and the mist came up for man. Because the plants need these, and man needs the plants, the sun shone in the heavens for man and was man’s. It is our sun. But we lost the right to all of it, to every grain of sand and drop of rain, to every bit of oxygen in the air, and to stand on God’s earth. For we rebelled against the Creator. And the fact that God drove man out of the best part, out of the garden of Eden is symbolic of the fact that we deserve nothing any more. That is also why we die and thereby lose everything. We ought to get that straight. We are not born free and equal. We are born in the slavery of sin with no right to any place but the prison of hell. And we are equal only in the sense that we are equally under condemnation in Adam. If we would hold on to this truth that because of sin we lost the right to all of these, and to life itself, we would not fall into this serious error of maintaining that we do have a right to something even better, namely, salvation. Some go about speaking glibly, and promiscuously offer salvation to everyone who hears the preaching. But if we lost the right to our earthly, natural life as punishment for our sins, how do we suddenly have the right to a life that is far better and higher than it? We have no right to salvation in ourselves. We are guilty and deserving only of a continuation of our death until we are in hell! And the natural man cannot say today, All these are mine! He must say, I have no right to these, nor even to life itself.
But in Christ all things are ours again. As Paul writes in I Corinthians 3:22, 23, “Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are yours: And ye are Christ’s, and Christ is God’s.” Because we are Christ’s, all this creation and the one to come are ours.
The second element to be underscored is that all these are yours as tools, means, instruments wherewith to serve God. They are yours relatively, remaining God’s in the absolute sense of the word. He gives them to us in Christ in order that we may have means wherewith to serve Him. All paradise was given Adam, according to Genesis 2:15, “to dress and to keep” it for God. All is restored to us in order that we may “dress and keep” it in the service of God.
The first object you see when you wake up in the morning, do you see it as God’s and as that which is given you to praise and glorify God? The clothes you put on—and have taken off—when you dress for the work of the day, do you see God in them, and your calling before God in them? The food you sit down to eat, and that chair and table made from the plants that God made, does it link you up with God? Do we simply see the plants as a link between us and the earth out of which we came, or do we see God behind and under it, and find ourselves by faith linked up to Him? Do we know our calling with all these possessions which have been given us?
Take a good hard look at Genesis 1. In the beginningGod … Do you today rule Him out? He said each time, “Let the water (earth) bring forth …” They are His. And you are His. All these are yours only to use to the glory of His name. All these Christ used only for that purpose, and presently He will bring us into the new creation where all the creatures shall be used by us and all the redeemed in a joyful service we will not want to interrupt or terminate. In Christ we not only have the right again to all these, but also the power to use them for the purpose for which God created them.