The Creator who entered His creation
Our children and grandchildren spent many hours playing with Lego. They used their imagination and creativity to build many things. In Genesis we are told that in the beginning of time God created the universe and all that is in it. This was greater than creating with Lego – He didn’t just assemble ready-made components, He made the atoms and molecules of all the components. And He made living creatures, which do a lot more then Lego technic or Lego robots. Living creatures make their own decisions and don’t just follow a computer code. And they can communicate with each other.
But can an ant communicate with a human being? Or vice-versa? No, not unless an ant becomes a human or a human becomes an ant. That’s absurd and ridiculous! It’s like a transformer toy. At least they would need to know the other’s language.
Can the creator God communicate with human beings? This gap is greater than between an ant and a human because we are inside time and space and God is outside time and space. For this to happen, either the Creator comes down to our level or we, the creatures, move up to His level.
How would you feel about becoming an ant? Imagine the only way to save them was for you to become an ant and show them how to live right. Would you do so knowing that the same ants you were trying to save would turn on you and kill you? Would you do it if you knew you would have to remain an ant forever?
In Old Testament times God sent important messages to His people via an audible voice (Gen. 3:8-19; Ex. 19:3-6; Dt. 4:12; Acts 9:4-6; 10:13, 15), prophets, angels, and dreams and visions (Appendix A). This began with Adam and Eve (Appendix B). Also, it seems as though God appeared physically sometimes as “the angel of the Lord”. This was a foretaste of what happened in the New Testament where God did more than that. The New Testament says that God the Son came down to our level. We remembered this at Christmas. God doesn’t need anything from us, and we have no intrinsic value that didn’t come from Him. Yet, God chose to become a human being knowing fully well that we would kill Him and He would have to remain a man forever (1 Tim. 2:5). The God of the universe experienced the nature of humanity.
Jesus had to be a man so that He could die for us. If He wasn’t a human being, He couldn’t have died and paid the price for our sins. Jesus was still human, but with a glorified body, after He rose from the dead and when He ascended back to heaven (1 Tim. 2:5). A glorified body is a transformation that all believers look forward to.
Father God, we thank you for the miracle of creation. Thanks for creating us in your image so we can have a special relationship with you and be indwelt with the Holy Spirit.
And we thank you for sending Jesus in our image to die in our place so that our sins might be put away forever. That’s the greatest example of love that we can imagine.
We marvel that Jesus entered His creation and is now connected to it forever. And that as the unique God-man, He continues to mediate and intercede between us and God.
So, we offer thanks and praise for all that you have done through Jesus. In Christ’s name, Amen.
Appendix A: Important messages from God
The usual method that God uses to send important messages to us is via His written words in the Bible.
Appendix B: God speaks to Adam and Eve
God spoke to Adam before and after they sinned (Gen. 2:16-18; 3:8-11, 7-19). He also spoke to Eve (Gen. 3:13, 16).
But we don’t know how this happened – there is no mention of God in a human form in these passages. The Bible says, “Then the man [Adam] and his wife [Eve] heard the sound of the Lord God as He was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden. But the Lord God called to the man, ‘Where are you?’. He answered, ‘I [Adam] heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid’” (Gen. 3:8-11NIV).
According to the NET Bible:
– “The Hitpael participle of הָלָךְ (halakh, “to walk, to go”) in v.8 has an iterative sense, “moving” or “going about.” While a translation of “walking about” is possible, it assumes a theophany, the presence of the Lord God in a human form. This is more than the text asserts.”
– The expression in v.8 is traditionally rendered “cool of the day,” because the Hebrew word רוּחַ (ruakh) can mean “wind.” U. Cassuto (Genesis: From Adam to Noah, 152-54) concludes after lengthy discussion that the expression refers to afternoon when it became hot and the sun was beginning to decline. J. J. Niehaus (God at Sinai [SOTBT], 155-57) offers a different interpretation of the phrase, relating יוֹם (yom, usually understood as “day”) to an Akkadian cognate umu (“storm”) and translates the phrase “in the wind of the storm.” If Niehaus is correct, then God is not pictured as taking an afternoon stroll through the orchard, but as coming in a powerful windstorm to confront the man and woman with their rebellion. In this case קוֹל יְהוָה (qol yhvah, “sound of the Lord”) may refer to God’s thunderous roar, which typically accompanies His appearance in the storm to do battle or render judgment (e.g., see Ps 29).
– So the NET translates v.8 as, “Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God moving about in the orchard at the breezy time of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the orchard”.
Written, January 2022