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A Biblical Worldview: Creation and Sin

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Title: A Biblical Worldview: Creation and Sin


1
A Biblical Worldview Creation and Sin
  • Living at the Crossroads
  • Chapters 3

2
Worldview Getting it right!
  • Worldview is about getting who Jesus is right
  • Jesus is Creator, Lord of history, Redeemer of
    all, Judge
  • Worldview is about getting the gospel right
  • Gospel of kingdom

3
Gospel of the kingdom
  • God is acting to restore his good but fallen
    creation to again live under his gracious rule.
  • God creates good creation
  • Sin pollutes the whole creation
  • God acts to restore the creation

4
Creation The World As God Meant It To Be
5
Creation The World As God Meant It To Be
  • The Creator God

6
Relation of God to world
  • Created by God
  • Upheld by God
  • Ruled by God
  • Permeated by his presence and glory
  • Theater of his glory

7
Danger of Deism
  • World is permeated by Gods presence
  • Deism World devoid of Gods presence
  • Builds in natural laws and lives outside world
  • Like watchmaker

8
Apostle Paul and Cardinal Newman
  • For in him we live and move and have our being
    (Acts 1728).
  • God has so implicated Himself with the
    creation, and taken it into His very bosom, by
    His presence in it, His providence over it, His
    impressions upon it, and His influences through
    it, that we cannot truly or fully contemplate it
    without in some aspects contemplating Him
    (Cardinal Newman).

9
Herman Bavinck quoting John Calvin
  • There is not an atom of the universe in which
    you cannot see some brilliant sparks at least of
    his glory. God is immanent in all creation. The
    pure of heart see God everywhere. Everything is
    full of God. I confess that the expression,
    Nature is God may be used in a pious sense by a
    pious mind!

10
John Manley Hopkins
  • The world is charged with the grandeur of God.
  • It will flame out, like shining from shook foil
  • It gathers to a greatness, like the ooze of oil
  • Crushed.

11
Cardinal Newman again
  • He is One who is sovereign over, operative
    amidst, independent of, the appointments which He
    has made One in whose hands are all things, who
    has a purpose in every event, and a standard for
    every deed, and thus has relations of His own
    towards the subject-matter of each particular
    science which the book of knowledge unfolds who
    has with an adorable, never-ceasing energy
    implicated Himself in all the history of
    creation, the constitution of nature, the course
    of the world, the origin of society, the fortunes
    of the nations, the action of the human mind.

12
Life lived Coram Deo
  • Latin phrase used 50x in Vulgate
  • In the presence of God or before the face of God
  • Image of Oriental throne room
  • Servants waiting, alert, aware of kings
    presence, ready and prepared to respond to his
    bidding

13
God is . . .
  • Present within creation
  • But also sovereign over and independent of it
  • Creator-creature distinction

14
Creation The World As God Meant It To Be
  • The Creator God
  • A good and ordered creation
  • An ordered creation

15
An Ordered Creation Gods Originating Word
  • Let there be . . .
  • Originating word of God Gods word which brings
    shape and order to the creation
  • Genesis 1 Psalm 336,9 Hebrews 113

16
An Ordered Creation Gods Ruling Word
  • Ruling word Gods word which continues to give
    shape and order to the creation moment by moment
  • 2 Peter 35,7 Psalm 14715,18
  • Psalm 1485-8

17
Gods Ruling Word
  • God has called the universe into being out of
    nothing, and hence at every moment it hangs
    suspended, as it were, over the abyss of non-
    existence. If God were to withdraw his upholding
    Word, then all being . . . would instantly tumble
    back into nothing and cease to exist. The
    continuation of the universe from one moment to
    the next is therefore as great a miracle and as
    fully the work of God as is its coming into being
    at the beginning (Bruce Milne).

18
Creation Order
19
Comprehensive Scope of Gods Ordinances
  • All created life necessarily bears in itself a
    law for its existence, instituted by God himself.
    . . . Consequently there are ordinances of God
    for our bodies, for the blood that courses
    through our arteries and veins, and for our lungs
    as the organs of respiration. And even so are
    there ordinances of God in logic, to regulate our
    thoughts ordinances of God for our imagination,
    in the domain of aesthetics and so also, strict
    ordinances of God whole of human life in the
    domain of morals.
  • Abraham
    Kuyper

20
Scope of Gods Law
  • Everything has been created was, in its
    creation, furnished by God with an unchangeable
    law of its existence. And because God has fully
    ordained such laws and ordinances for all of
    life, therefore the Calvinist demands that all
    life be consecrated to His service, in strict
    obedience. -Abraham Kuyper

21
Response of Creation
  • Response of non-human creation Necessary or
    instinctive response to Gods word (laws of
    nature)
  • Response of humankind Creative and responsible
    response of to Gods word (norms)

22
Difficulty in Knowing God Creational Order
  • Assuming that there are given standards for
    economics or art, what methodological safeguards
    can we devise against epistemological
    subjectivism in establishing what is normative in
    these areas? . . . Do we have no recourse but to
    appeal to intuition or self-evidence?
  • Al Wolters

23
How do we know Gods will for _____________?
  • Scripture
  • Listening to others from different historical
    eras, cultural contexts, confessional traditions
  • Constancy across time and culture
  • Gods covenant with creation blessing/cursing
  • Conscience Intuitive attunement to creational
    normativity (Wolters)

24
Wisdom
  • Wisdom is practical knowledge of the laws of
    life and of the world, based on experience (Von
    Rad)
  • God wisdom Order established in creation
  • Human wisdom Living in conformity with that
    order

25
Divine and human wisdom
  • Wisdom is wrought into the constitution of the
    universe so that human wisdom is ethical
    conformity to Gods creation (Fleming).
  • Kosmos the world held a divine order and
    therefore wisdom was fitting oneself into this
    divine order (Gladigow).

26
Isaiah 2823-29
  • Listen and hear my voice pay attention and hear
    what I say.
  • When a farmer plows for planting, does he plow
    continually?
  • Does he keep on breaking up and harrowing the
    soil?
  • When he has leveled the surface, does he not sow
    caraway and scatter cummin?
  • Does he not plant wheat in its place, barley in
    its plot, and spelt in its field?
  • His God instructs him and teaches him the right
    way.
  • Caraway is not threshed with a sledge, nor is a
    cartwheel rolled over
  • cummin caraway is beaten out with a rod, and
    cummin with a stick.
  • Grain must be ground to make bread so one does
    not go on threshing it forever.
  • Though he drives the wheels of his threshing
    cart over it, his horses do not grind it.
  • All this also comes from the Lord Almighty,
    wonderful in counsel and magnificent in wisdom.

27
Creation The World As God Meant It To Be
  • The Creator God
  • A good and ordered creation
  • An ordered creation
  • A very good creation

28
Very good of creation
  • And it was good . . . And God saw it was very
    good.
  • Creation is very good! (1 Tim. 4.1-5)
  • God does not make junk and we dishonour the
    Creator if we take a negative view of the work of
    his hands when he himself takes such a positive
    view (Wolters).

29
Creation is very good
  • Each part of creation is good as it conforms to
    Gods creational design
  • The whole is God in harmonious diversity
  • Illustration Symphony
  • Many good sound
  • Very good of harmony of whole

30
Creation as symphony
  • The creation is a symphony where we find a
    variety of creatures each singing the praises of
    the Maker in accordance with its unique
    character, different from creatures of another
    make. The lion is to serve the Lord like a
    lion, the dandelion like a dandelion. The
    difference in service depends on the difference
    in the Word addressed to them. The response of
    the creation to the one all-embracing Wordserve
    Me!is thus a symphony of voices in which each
    type of creature performs its unique function in
    the indispensable setting of the whole (Bernard
    Zylstra).

31
Creation The World As God Meant It To Be
  • The Creator God
  • A good and ordered creation
  • An ordered creation
  • A very good creation
  • An historical creation

32
Historical nature of creation
  • God intended from beginning that the historical
    development of creation should continue in the
    human cultivation of the rich potentials of Gods
    creation through the responsible cultural
    activity of human beings.

33
Creation The World As God Meant It To Be
  • The Creator God
  • A good and ordered creation
  • An ordered creation
  • A very good creation
  • An historical creation
  • Role of human beings in Gods creation

34
Humanity in Genesis 1
  • Climactic moment in creation story
  • Announcement of Divine King of intention to
    create image
  • Imageshocking claim in cultural setting
  • Meaning of image

35
Meaning of Image
  • Radical dependence
  • Mankinds being as image stresses the radical
    nature of his dependence (Henri Blocher).

36
Meaning of Image
  • Radical dependence
  • Related to God Life of ongoing response
  • Reflection of Gods character
  • Represent God as steward of creation

37
Religious Core of Human Existence
  • Very core of human life is religious
  • Dependent on and related to God
  • Life as constant response to God

38
Communal Nature of Human Life
  • It is not good for the man to be alone. I will
    make a helper suitable for him (Gen. 218).
  • From the very beginning, the human being is . .
    . a being-with human life attains its full
    realization only in community (Blocher).

39
Creation Mandate (Gen. 126-28)
  • All culture, that is, all work which man
    undertakes in order to subdue the earth, whether
    agriculture, stock breeding, commerce, industry,
    science, or the rest, is all the fulfilment of a
    single Divine calling.
    -
    Herman Bavinck

40
Creation Mandate
  • Foundational command
  • Biblical storyline From garden to city

41
Creation Mandate
  • Creatio tertia Forming and filling to stamp
    Gods glory onto creation
  • Loving rule not tyrannical dominance
  • Development and care (Gen. 215)
  • We may press the grapes into wine, but not
    pollute the vineyard. We may develop
    sophisticated technology, but not at the expense
    of rewarding human work. We are free to eat of
    every tree in the garden, but not to spray them
    with destructive chemicals for short-term gain
    (J. Chaplin).

42
Creation Mandate
  • Joy of discovery and accomplishment
  • Thanksgiving for rich gifts
  • Communal task

43
Creation mandate Religious direction of culture
  • In communion with God
  • In obedience to God
  • For glory of God

44
Original Shalom in Creation
  • The webbing together of God, humans, and all
    creation in justice, fulfillment, and delight is
    what the Hebrew prophets call shalom. . . . In
    the Bible, shalom means universal flourishing,
    wholeness, and delighta rich state of affairs in
    which the natural needs are satisfied and natural
    gifts fruitfully employed, a state of affairs
    that inspires joyful wonder as its Creator and
    Savior opens doors and welcomes the creatures in
    whom he delights. Shalom, in other words, is the
    way things ought to be. . . . In a shalomic state
    each entity would have its own integrity or
    structured wholeness, and each would also possess
    many edifying relations to other entities
    (Plantinga).

45
Sin The Corruption of Gods Good Creation
46
Treason in the Garden
  • Tree of knowledge of good and evil
  • Reminder of creaturely status
  • Satanic temptation
  • Doubt Did God really say?
  • Unbelief You will not die
  • Imagination Your eyes will be opened
  • Act of disobedience

47
Claim to autonomy
  • Man has taken leave of the relation of
    dependence. He has refused to obey and has willed
    to make himself independent. No longer is
    obedience the guiding principle of his life, but
    his autonomous knowledge and will. Thereby he
    ceases, in effect, to understand himself as a
    creature (Von Rad).

48
Genesis 3-11
  • Ominous crescendo of sin
  • Impacts all of life
  • Relation to God
  • Relation to one another
  • Relation to non-human creation

49
Sin as Mortal and Powerful Enemy
  • Tendency to minimize power, gravity, and scope of
    sin
  • Reduced to individual disobedience
  • Sin is a very vicious and mortal enemy, an
    irascible and persistent power, which must
    certainly be known in order to be overcome
    (Berkouwer).

50
SinFirst Against God
  • Against you, you only, have I sinned and done
    what is evil in your sight (Ps. 514).
  • Revolt against God
  • Exchange of religious allegiance

51
Against God
  • Idolatry Serving another god
  • Adultery Adulterating an exclusive relationship
  • Refusing love to loving Father

52
Sin as destructive of human life
  • Am I the one they are provoking? declares the
    Lord. Are they not rather harming themselves, to
    their own shame? (Jer. 719).
  • Disobedience goes against the very grain of
    creation itself. Sin is rebellion against both
    the structure and the Structurer of reality. Such
    rebellion is inevitably self-defeating and
    self-destroying (Walsh and Middleton).

53
Sin as Covenant Rebellion
  • See, I set before you today life and prosperity,
    death and destruction. For I command you today to
    love the L your God, to walk in his ways, and to
    keep his commands, decrees and laws then you
    will live and increase, and the Lord your God
    will bless you in the land you are entering to
    possess. But if your heart turns away and you are
    not obedient, and if you are drawn away to bow
    down to other gods and worship them, I declare to
    you this day that you will certainly be
    destroyed. . . . I have set before you life and
    death, blessings and curses. (Deut. 301519)

54
Covenant Dynamic
55
Power of Sin
  • Sin is a power, seductive . . . damning, an
    active, dynamic and destructive force.
  • Sin is a power that seeks to rule and ruin
    everyone and everything.
  • Personal power in Romans 7

56
Relation of Sin to Creation
  • Sin as parasite Feeds of Gods good creation
  • Goodness is, so to speak, itself badness is
    only spoiled goodness. And there must be
    something good first before it can be spoiled.
    (C.S. Lewis)
  • Sin is nothing and can do nothing apart from
    the creatures and the powers which God has
    created yet it organizes all these in open
    rebellion against him. Sin does not destroy the
    creation the world of human culture remains . .
    . part of Gods good creation, but sin corrupts
    and pollutes. (H. Bavinck)
  • Sin corrupts, pollutes, misdirects, twists
    creation

57
Scope of Sin
  • Defiles individual life
  • Disfigures cultural and social life

58
Sin Twists Human Social and Cultural Life Three
Biblical Rules
  • Every person serves some god in their life
  • Every person is transformed into the image of
    that god
  • Together humanity creates and forms a society in
    their image

59
Forming Society in Our Distorted Image
  • In the development of human civilization, man
    forms, creates and changes the structure of his
    society, and in doing so he portrays in his work
    the intention of his own heart. He gives to the
    structure of that society something of his own
    image and likeness. In it he betrays something of
    his own lifestyle, of his own god. (Bob
    Goudzwaard)

60
Human Cultural Life Rooted in Idolatrous Story
61
Scope of Sin
  • Defiles individual life
  • Disfigures cultural and social life
  • Touches non-human creation
  • The creation was subjected to frustration, not
    by its own choice, but by the will of the one who
    subjected it. . . . The whole creation has been
    groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up
    to the present time (Rom. 820, 22)

62
Three Hopeful Notes
  • Sin does not belong to the fabric of the
    creation It can be removed
  • Even before end God keeps sin from running its
    destructive course
  • Power of gospel is greater than power of sin
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