Genesis: Back to the Basics
Everything in life has a beginning. An old car once was a brand new car when it was rolled off the assembly line. Many successful corporations started out with an idea on paper. A professional baseball player started out with T-Ball or Little League. Marriages begin with the first date. Childbirth begins when the mother become pregnant.
The Bible itself has a beginning with the Book of Genesis. We see many firsts within the first eleven chapters of this book. We see the beginning of:
We also first see God's love with humanity. He loves us and performs acts of love. Everything that he does is an act of love. When God created the world, God did this because of love.
God created all things, including angelic beings. However, human are unique because these are the only things that he created in his image. We are valuable in God's eyes because we reflect the image of God. We did not evolve from monkeys as some people believe. If we did, then why are there still monkeys in this world? We were handmade by the Great Potter himself.
Why did God create us in his own image and likeness? That was his way of showing his love for humans. He put us in a perfect, sinless place where we could have a special relationship with him.
Genesis 1:26-27 (KJV)
26 “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.
27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.”
Genesis 2:7 “And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul” (KJV).
Genesis 2:22 “And the rib, which the Lord God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man” (KJV).
The Bible is always about beginnings. It is not just the beginning of the world with the first sentence of Genesis 1:1, "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth" (KJV). The beginning of salvation is shown in John 1:1 "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God" (KJV) and Mark 1:1 "The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God" (KJV).
Jesus Christ was also with God when the Lord created the world as can seen in the following verses:
John 1:3 "All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made (KJV).
Colossians 1:16-17 "For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist" (KJV).
Hebrews 1:2 "Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds: (KJV).
Some may argue that the New Testament begins with John the Baptist paving the way. While it may seem so just by opening the Bible, take a look at Genesis 3:15:
"And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel" (KJV).
This shows God's promise and gift of salvation to not only Christians but to individuals who lives during the Old Testament time. Even people who believed before Jesus was born were saved.
Back to the Basics
The first eleven chapters of the book of Genesis cover the basics. It lets us know that the first book of the Bible wasn't the beginning of everything, it was the beginning of this world, the universe, animals, humans and everything else God created. However, God was there before the Creation. We might not know everything God did before he created this world.
Since God is eternal, he does not have a beginning or an ending. However, by reading the Bible we can get an idea of what he did before creation and gives us an understanding of what God reveals to us today.
God does not just do anything on a random whim. When he created this world, he had an awesome, magnificent purpose in mind.
For us to survive, we need food, water, oxygen, clothing and shelter. However, God needs none of this to survive. He did not need to create us for his own existence. God is limitless, infinite, all-knowing, powerful and everywhere.
1 John 4:8 “He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love” (KJV).
Ps. 90:2 “Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, thou art God” (KJV).
Evaluating my Life
You can use to first eleven chapters of the Bible and apply it to your life. It is all about basics. There are many times when I have had to go back to the basics.
The main area of life where I had to go back to the basic is my faith. I became a Christian when I was in college. When I was in college I knew what it was like to be a Christian and I might have been saved then. But if I was I was a lukewarm Christian. I was reluctant to give up my freedom; this was the first time I was away from home. And I was raised in a God-fearing home. With things I had been taught in my Church and in the school I went to, I was very sure I was bound for Hell. (I am not mentioning the denomination I was brought under because I do not want to say anything negative about it.)
I was rebellious and had an “I do not care” attitude. I think I acquired that attitude because of my experience in school. Being the smallest one in class I was picked on and beat up on an almost daily basis. I was told I would never amount to anything. I did not do well in school I barely passed by the skin of my teeth. My brother and sisters (5 brothers and 4 sisters) kept telling my parents to get me out of that school and put me in public school. They didn't want to put me in the public school because they heard of drugs in the high school. Then they found that the private School also had drugs. So I started public school in ninth grade. And everything got better. As I was growing up I had no friends, just a couple people who used me. In high school things got a lot better. I felt like I belonged. I made friends, my grades were a lot better, I joined the track team ran the mile and two mile and ran cross country. Things were so much better. However, I carried a grudge against God because of my experience. And when I was sixteen, I stopped believing in God. It is kind of funny because I didn't believe in God but I believed that I was going to Hell for not believing in God. I am kind of contradicting myself here.
I was in my second semester in College. During my first semester I went to a different college. I was thinking about taking Nursing and I was taking Biological Technology. However, this was a very hard major and Science is not my strongest point. I ended up transferring to a community college in for my second semester. I decided to take General Studies until I knew what I wanted to do with my education. At that point I decided that Nursing wasn't my field. I think it was God's plan for me to go to that college. (Actually I know it was God's plan.) A couple of weeks after I started going there, I met Ray. He basically approached me and started talking about Jesus. He told me how Jesus had died on the cross for my sins. He told me that I would go to heaven if I believed that he is the Son of God, that he died for my sins and if I took Jesus as my personal savior. At that moment I started believing again. Ray and I must have talked for a couple of hours. I asked questions and he answered them honestly. The main reason I accepted what Ray told me was because he didn't approach me preaching fire and brimstone. He approached me in a kind, gentle and humble manner. I went to several on-campus Bible studies. and was involved in Campus Crusade For Christ when I transferred to a four year college.
This is just it in a nutshell. When I became a Christian in college, I had to go back to the basics because I was a new Christian and had to redefine my life. Was this the only time I had to return to the basics? The answer is no.
There have been many times I put God on the back burner. While I was joyful that I found out that God is a loving and very forgiving God, there are many temptations out there. Especially, both of the colleges I attended-the community college and the university-were party schools. I was ready to put God aside and join in on the parties. I was too self-willed to think about God all the time.
There are many other times when I put God on the back burner and instead of writing a book about it I will give an outline.
Whenever I was under stress about money and monthly payments, I did not ask God for advice.
When I lost my son through a miscarriage, I did not ask God to comfort me.
When I had difficulties with my marriage, I did not approach God with my problems.
Whenever something went wrong, I blamed God.
The good thing is I always returned to God. And yes I returned to the basics. Of all the books in the Bible, the Book of Genesis is the book I have read the most.
This leads to another question I asked myself, “What are the basics in life”? The basics for life are what we need in order to survive. When a baby is conceived, he needs a caring mother who will do anything to protect the fetus. She does this by not drinking, smoking and doing drugs. She follows the doctor's advice and follows a healthy diet and takes prenatal vitamins. She avoids medications that can harm the baby. When the baby is born, he will still need the mother to nurse him so and to protect him, provide him with medical care so he can grow into a healthy adult. The mother provides the baby with a safe environment, food, and water so he can grow from a healthy baby to a healthy adult. He needs clothing to protect him from rain, heat, cold and wind. He needs a doctor to check if there are illnesses and conditions that need to be treated. He needs a house or some type of shelter to protect him from different sorts of dangers.
When it comes to faith, there are basics as well. They are:
Discipleship-where I can get a deeper understanding of Scripture
Fellowship-where I can get a sense of community with other believers
Worship-when I can express my gratitude and thankfulness through prayer and song.
Acts 2:42 “And they continued steadfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers” (KJV).
The Holy Bible: King James Version.
© 2017 Lois Ryan