John R Gavazzoni
Thousand Oaks, CA
However one interprets the relationship between the first two verses of Genesis, we are, nevertheless, from, or nearly from the very beginning confronted with a chaotic scene. How it came to be that way does not concern us for purposes of this message. What I want to impress upon the reader is that at the point where God says, "Let there be light," what the Lord is working with is a formless mess.
Taking into consideration all that is suggested by the original Hebrew words translated in the KJV as "without form and void," the scene presented by the text is that of wilderness desolation, confusion, undistinguishable ruin, emptiness, vacuity, waste; in a word, material chaos. Added to that, "darkness was upon the face of the deep (waters)." If one were looking for divine order, it certainly wouldn't be very apparent at this point.
According to the apostle Paul in 2 Cor.4:6, such was the situation out of which God caused light to shine. Please pause and read the verse. God caused the light to shine OUT OF darkness. It wasn't a matter of God getting light into the darkness from somewhere else, but of Him bringing forth light out of darkness.
So, got a dark, messy, chaotic mess on your hands? Believe it or not (or rather, please believe it), you've got the classic opening act that's meant to warm up the crowd just before God comes on stage and wows 'em with His stuff. What appears to us to be nothing but rubble, an out-of-control mess, a cause for nothing but despair, is really the stuff in the midst of which He hides Himself and out of which He springs forth as Light and goes on to bring breath-taking, beautiful splendor.
I personally believe that the Genesis account of creation, though told in a uniquely Hebrew way of telling a story to make a spiritual point, contains the only reliable, normatively-inspired record of God's actual material creation event. But if you get stuck there merely concerned with defending Bible-based creationism, you're missing wonderful lessons that the story is meant to convey.
The New Testament tells us that all the things contained in the law were written for our example. The law being, in its totality, the first five books of Moses. Only the Spirit of Truth can make the story speak to you in your situation, but the Spirit can use this servant to point in the direction of its meaning. So I hope to stir you up to recognize that the darkness upon the face of your deep, the ruined state of your situation, your personal wilderness of desolation and out-of-control chaos, hides God who is already rolling up his sleeves preparing to break forth out of the midst of the mess to show Himself mighty on your behalf. He takes all the material that cannot possibly be conceived by the natural mind to have divine potential, and makes something truly beautiful.
As the song says, "All I had to offer Him was brokenness and strife, but He made something beautiful of my life." Go ahead, let loose of it all, give Him the formless void of your earthenness and watch what the Master Craftsman makes of it. I'm re-reading the story right at this moment from my NAS translation. Please read with me with reverence and with faith and hope. Let it speak to you..... "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. And the earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep; and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters. Then God......"
Stay tuned for future serious, seminal samplings.
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John R Gavazzoni
758 N. Woodlawn Dr.,
Thousand Oaks, CA 91360.