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A Good World Gone Bad
Publish date: Apr 16, 2013
Summary: If God made the world, and our bodies, then the Creation story can give us clues about how we should live for optimum health. But how did what God called "good" transform into a dog-eat-dog world of carnivores, thorns, parasites, and other ugly aspects of Creation?
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A Perfect WorldIn Genesis 1:31, God says that everything He had made was very good. There was no disharmony in this new Creation, nor was it subject to death. Humans were created in the image of God, to rule over everything that God had created.
And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth (Genesis 1:26-28).
What We Were Created ForHumans were the crowning act of God's Creation. He honored them by granting them dominion of the newly created world. Humans were different from all the other animals because they were created in the image of God. They were granted intellectual capacity, a creative spirit, a sense of morality, and the freedom of choice. The creation of humankind was to bring glory to God throughout eternity.
I will say to the north, Give up; and to the south, Keep not back: bring my sons from far, and my daughters from the ends of the earth; Even every one that is called by my name: for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him (Isaiah 43:6-7).
These verses show that the people God created are His sons and daughters; we are created for His glory. In the book of Hebrews, Paul sheds some interesting light on the subject of Creation when he wrote, "Thou madest him a little lower than the angels; thou crownedst him with glory and honour, and didst set him over the works of thy hands" (Hebrews 2:7).
The Greek word brachus, translated here "a little," literally means "for a little while." The full meaning of the text, then, is actually "for a little while lower than the angels." In the restored world, the angels will not rule upon the earth, but rather restored humans will sit with Christ in His throne.
For unto the angels hath he not put in subjection the world to come, whereof we speak (Hebrews 2:5).
To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne (Revelation 3:21).Before the earth is restored, however, there is some overcoming to be done. We have sinned and forfeited our great privilege (Romans 3:23). The Scriptures teach that our suffering will be transformed into glory through the purchase of the blood of Christ. Through Christ, we can overcome and be conquerors together with Him. Only then will our full potential be realized.
For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us (Romans 8:18).
And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory (Romans 9:23).
For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind (Isaiah 65:1).
For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I will make, shall remain before me, saith the LORD, so shall your seed and your name remain (Isaiah 66:2).
Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness (2 Peter 3:13).
The Scriptures also teach that the whole Creation is groaning while we wait for the promised restoration to be completed, the people of God to be revealed, and death to come to an end. Not only is humankind suffering from the consequences of sin, but the entire Creation is also under the burden of decay (Romans 8:19-22).
No Compromise: Chance or Design?
The Genesis account of Creation and the Fall is the exact opposite of the naturalistic view of origins. Genesis portrays a decline from perfection to degeneration and decay, whereas the naturalistic approach suggests an advance from chaos to order and perfection. According to naturalism, death is used to "create" better-adapted forms, and the cycles of death—which are enacted on the planet through prey and predator relationships—are the nurturing ground for adaptive radiation. According to the Scriptures, however, prey-predator relationships did not exist in the beginning, and will also not exist in the earth made new. Read more about these opposing viewpoints
The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them (Isaiah 11:6).
This verse portrays an order of things that is totally different to what we currently experience on the planet. There will be no carnivores and no predators. All aggression will be removed from the natures of these animals and people will once more have total control over the animal kingdom. This restoration is in line with what the book of Genesis says about the original diet of all creatures:
And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat. And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so (Genesis 1:29-30).
According to this verse, all creatures were vegetarian and the human diet consisted of seeds and fruits. There could have been no harmful bacteria or parasites—no creatures with harmful effects at all. What happened, then, to mar this perfection? Sin entered in, turning the perfect world upside down. Read more about this upside-down world in An Imperfect Planet.
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