God Doesn’t Leave Us In Our Mess

~By Meg Saunders

We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time” (Romans 8.22).

“If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.  If we confess our sins, God is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1.8-9).

For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God” (Romans 3.23).

“John [the Baptist] saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, ‘Behold!  The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!’” (John 1.29).
God, thank You that you don’t leave us in our mess!

What happens when someone acts selfishly and it leaves you feeling hurt?  Do you think there are consequences to the actions?  Asked another way, do you make decisions based solely on what you want and how you feel, dismissing the implications altogether?

Last week we considered the love and intention God uses to create human life and this beautiful world.  As this is the case, then do you ever wonder why something does not seem quite right?  Even when things are going well, do you sense an inexplicable feeling of brokenness or incompleteness?  These are not questions to determine whether you are a “glass is half empty/half full” kind of person but to encourage you to think about what the Bible describes as a “groaning” in creation.  What’s going on if God created the world and called it ‘good’, why then is there a sense of unresolved conflict?

To find the answers to these conundrums, first consider how the Bible is written.  It’s in a literary form called narrative telling an amazing story of God’s redemptive work in human history.  It’s a personal account, meaning we (human beings) are distinct in His creation.  This speaks into our souls and informs us of who we are and who He is.  However, in order fully to comprehend His love and intention for us, we also need to look at our own lives.  More specifically, we need to consider our ability freely to choose and the consequences that follow our decision-making.

On your own read the story of the fall of Adam and Eve found in Genesis 3.  In it we learn several things.  First, we were created with the freedom to make decisions.  Not one of us is a mindless robot.  Each of us has the ability to make choices.  Think about it: we all have the freedom to choose love, or not, to hurt another person, or not.  With our freedom also comes the possibility of temptation.  And that’s what we observe in the Garden story.  As a result of the decision of Adam and Eve to choose something antithetical to God’s intention for their lives, sin separated them from Him.  And it does with us as well.

This is hard to swallow.  What happened, after all, to the peace and intimacy they experienced with God after their creation?  Their choice had consequences.  As ours do too.  Sin is a distortion and undermines our relationship with ourselves, others and God because it elevates self above God.  It acts selfishly, choosing our way above anything else. Thankfully, though, it is not the end of the story.  Sin is serious, very serious and causes a lot of brokenness, but we are not stuck without a plan of redemption and hope.  God in His infinite love and mercy has provided a way for us.  But before we go there  . . . let’s contemplate the implications of our sin, how it taints our lives and separates us from God and the life He has for us.

In closing, I’d like to share an amazing bit I recently learned about the story of Adam and Eve.  In the ancient Middle East when someone was disinherited from a family their clothes could be removed from them to signify the fracture.  Interestingly, look at Genesis 3.21, “The Lord God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them.”  God provided clothes for them!  His action signifies His plan for their lives was not over.  In fact, the problem of sin is not the end of the story for us either . . .

He’s waiting for you . . . .

2011 © First Thoughts, M.V. Saunders
All rights reserved. Pittsburgh, PA

To subscribe send an email request to megsaunders99@yahoo.com

2011 Winner of Christianity Today’s Award of Merit for Apologetics/Evangelism:
Belief: Readings on the Reason for Faith, Francis S. Collins, Meg Saunders
Find it on: http://www.amazon.co.uk and http://www.amazon.com

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