Saturday, June 20, 2009

Law #1: God's Love

God created you and has a wonderful plan for your life! Sound cheesy yet? Then let me explain...

Christians, including myself, believe that God created the human race in hopes of having a deep and intimate relationship with it. All of the Bible, even the Old Testament when read in context, clearly teaches this doctrine. Before sin entered the world, the two humans present here lived in perfect harmony with Him, and He desired nothing more than that they love Him, glorify Him, and be His representatives here on Earth. Even after the Fall (the eating of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil), He pursues His creation with the burning desire that none perish (2 Peter 3:9). He loves us all so much that He was willing to sacrifice his son for us on the cross in the hopes of bringing us back to Him (John 3:16). That's pretty much all there is to the first Spiritual Law, now on to some theological side-tracks (represented in light blue!) having to do with what I just said.

Concerning the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. When the Bible says good and evil, it is speaking in a figurative sense much in the same way David was when he said to God, "Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!" (Psalms 139:7-8) David is obviously not saying that God resides only in heaven and in Sheol leaving everywhere else to fend for itself, but that YHWH resides everywhere. A place does not exist where one can run to in this lifetime and escape from the His sovereignty. In much the same way, putting two contrasting ideas (good and evil) in the tree's name signifies that it supplies knowledge of everything in between these polar opposites. Adam and Eve now knew, not all knowledge, but more knowledge than they could morally handle. There innocence was lost as they realized all the new ways they could sin.

You may be wondering, why was there a tree of the knowledge of good and evil in Eden anyway? Is that not just asking people to disobey? Well, think of it this way. What is love and devotion without free-will? God could have made the garden a completely perfect place where there was no opportunity for disobedience, but if you withhold your subjects ability to defy you, they can't really love you. God might as well have created robots. Also, if He would have followed that course of action, there would never have been a chance to show one of His most defining attributes, grace (a topic I will definitely hit on later). So, did He set us up knowing we were going to let him down? Knowing that the world would end up as it did? Let's review the facts, He put us in a garden by ourselves, picked one tree and told us we could not eat from it (besides giving it a tantalizing name like "the tree of the knowledge of good and evil"), gave us free-will, created us within the same universe that He had banished Satan to after He cast him out of heaven, allowed the two of us (humans and demons) to have communications of sorts, and, existing outside the realm of time, He knows everything that is ever going to happen. What do you think? Furthermore, is that unfair?

"But who are you, O man, to answer back to God? Will what is molded say to its molder, 'Why have you made me like this?' Has the potter no right over the clay to make out of the same lump one for honored use and one for dishonorable use? What if God, desiring to show His wrath and to make known His power, has endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction in order to make known the riches of His glory for vessels of mercy?" (Romans 9:20-23)

I know I've hinted at, if not downright stated, the next Spiritual Law within this post, but I will cover it in more detail next time.

"We all make choices, but in the end, our choices make us." - Andrew Ryan

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