Why do human beings love beginnings? Why do we really enjoy starting new projects, new books, new anything? I’m not exactly sure, but I am convinced that God loves beginnings and we bear His image well when we take great pleasure in beginnings.
Did you know that the most dangerous words in the Bible are “In the Beginning…?” Why? I’m glad you asked. Because what you choose to say after that powerful phrase determines everything else about your perspective and worldview. If you are brave enough to determine that “In the beginning God” then the story of seven billion earthlings and all existence is dependent upon Him and our lives must be shaped around His word; His will and His ways. However, if we say “In the beginning (and insert anything other than God) then our lives will by default wrap around us and many times only us. You’ve heard the song by Carly Simon that says, “You’re so vain, you probably think this song is about you.” Well I believe that’s a good motto for mankind. We think we were created for us. We are forever confusing the beginning, and therefore the story of our existence never makes sense. We continually think we are the main character, when it many cases we are simply a small part. It seems to me that our stories can only make sense when we say with confidence, “In the beginning God.”
Many times when reading the introduction a good story you can glean most of what’s going to happen in the first few sentences. It’s no different with the Bible. In the very first few sentences of scripture, we get a full overview of the biblical story and of our own story. Let me show you in four movements from the first four sentences of the Bible;
1. The first movement is about the Creator: The Bible says “In the beginning God.” Every great story has a once upon a time moment, but that doesn’t mean the author didn’t exist before the story did. Kind of sobering to think about that all we are and all we have depend 100% on His kindness. This way of thinking quickly rules out pride because everything is a gift. He was before us. Each of us has a beginning, but we must remember that before we were, He was.
2. The second movement is about the Chaos: The Bible uses three words to describe the chaotic nature of the earth and of each of our lives. “The earth was formless and empty, and darkness covered the deep waters.” This describes my lives so many times that I try to control my own life. I become formless, empty and dark. Chaos happens and it happens often when we take control of our own lives and try to play creator, but thank God for the third movement when we needed it most.
3. The third movement is about the Christ: The Bible says that the Spirit of God was hovering over the dark and chaotic nothingness of creation. Like an Eagle waiting to strike its prey just waiting for instructions for its Master. Then it happened, God said, “Let there be light.” Do you see here that God loves to light up and fill void and empty places. He loves to bring creation to chaos. He loves to speak light over darkness. It’s His way. It has forever been His way and will forever be His way. When you think about God, think brilliant light. Think safety. Think good. When the sun comes up it’s a reminder that God loves to light up the darkness. It’s his favorite hobby. When Jesus came to the earth, the light of heaven invaded the spiritual darkness of earth. In the cosmic battle that waged between light and darkness, one would have to give. Needless to say, the darkness failed miserably.
4. The fourth movement is about the Conclusion: The Bible says that God peered over the balcony of heaven and saw what He had done, and in that moment God saw that the light was good. In other words, he was declaring victory over the darkness and said that in the end it will be good. In fact, by the end of Chapter 1, it says He looked and said it is very good. Very good is phrase that describes the plan God has for His chaotic creatures and creation. As crazy as we can be sometimes, He is ordaining goodness into our lives. He has not and will not leave us hanging. He is good and wherever he works, goodness follows.
Creation, Chaos, Christ and Conclusion. These four movements happen in each of our lives all the time. They are what happens when heaven dances with earth. They are the rhythms of divine activity in our daily lives, and I bet if you paid attention you could see each of these movements cycling through your life like the seasons of the year.