Bible Lesson 132

THE QUESTION OF LIFE AND ANSWERS FROM THE BIBLE.
Part I in a series

“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 being.” Genesis 2:7

“THE WORLD IS . . . A KIND OF SPIRITUAL KINDERGARTEN WHERE MILLONS OF BEWILDERED INFANTS ARE TRYING TO SPELL “GOD” WITH THE WRONG BLOCKS”
EDWIN ARLINGTON ROBINSON.

In this lesson we will ask God to point us to the truths about ourselves, these selves that we call man/woman; and what purpose God had when He created us from the dust of the earth, which He had created. God had many side purposes for creating man and woman, but his main, or at least one of the main purposes was that, as the Westminster Confession of Faith, shares with us: “In the beginning it pleased God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, to create the world out of nothing in order to reveal the glory of His eternal power, wisdom, and goodness. He made everything in the world, visible and invisible, in the space of six days, and it was very good.

After God had made all the other creatures, He created man, male and female, with reasoning, immortal souls. He endowed them with knowledge, righteousness, and true holiness in His own image and wrote His law in their hearts. God also gave them the ability to obey His law and the potential to disobey it; i.e., He gave them freedom of their own will, which could change. In addition to this law written in their hearts, they were commanded not to eat from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.

As long as they obeyed God’s law and kept this commandment, they were happy in fellowship with God and had dominion over the other creatures.” (Hebrews 1:2; John 1:1-3; Genesis 1:1; Job 26:13a; Job 33:4; Romans 11:36; 1st Corinthians 8:6; Romans 1:20; Jeremiah 10:12;Psalms 104:24; Psalms 33:5-6; Hebrews 11:3; Colossians 1:16; Acts 17:24; Exodus 20:11; Genesis 1:27; Genesis 2:7; Ecclesiastes 12:6-7; Matthew 10:28; Genesis 2:19-20; Psalms 8:4-8; Genesis 1:26; Colossians 3:1-11; Ephesians 4:21-24; Romans 2:13-16; Ecclesiastes 7:29; Genesis 2:16-17; Genesis 3:1-7; Genesis 3:8-19;).

I believe that man has been bombarded with so many theories, ideas and crazy suggestions that man has lost his focus on who he is and why he is, and as a result we have degenerated into a sort of nether world where we just stumble and fall and rise to stumble again, getting nowhere and doing nothing that amounts to what God created us to be. Take for instance what Science has foisted upon the simple among us, about things like evolution, the ‘big bang’ theory, or fairy tale, and other God demeaning things.

I have no quarrel with science in many areas, but when scientist begin to bring things like evolution, which they have never proved to anyone and I don’t even believe that they have convinced themselves. They want to believe it because they came up with the idea. My question which they have never answered is if, as they say, man evolved from monkeys, why are there still so many monkeys’ If you will follow their lines of reasoning or better, their wishful thinking, they never make the connection in that quantum leap that monkeys took to become man. As for the idea they have about creation, who in the world could ever believe that some great explosion occurred in the past and suddenly there were men and all the other creatures on the earth. Go to some of these places where people make bombs of themselves and see if you can find anything that was created (other than death and disaster), when those bombs went off. Science is something that was brought forth in time, Adam was not a scientist, but probably had the intelligence and the intellect to become one, if God had decreed it.

God created mankind to commune with Him, He did not mean for man to confuse what God had done and only God could do. Now, these scientist can prove or disprove anything that they want to… at least to themselves. Notice that science brought forth their own scheme, to carbon date things to say how long the world had been in place. Is that something that you can bet your life on’ It wouldn’t be a good idea for you to do that; because all that does is to satisfy the scientist preconceived notions about what happened in Creation.

God works, or moves, in mysterious ways His Wonders to perform, is a Hymn, written by William Cowper many years ago, and if we are students of the Bible and have observed God’s works in our own lives we know that the Hymn is true. God’s wisdom, as it is outlined in 1st Corinthians 1:25-29, tells us “Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men. For you see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble are called: But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; and base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring things that are: That no flesh should glory in His presence.” (Matthew 11:25; Matthew 18:3-4). Man’s worldly wisdom, cannot understand the Love and the Mercy of God. That’s the reason that God said that we must come to faith like a little child, one who is totally dependent on others, unable and unwilling to challenge the Word and Will of God Almighty.

We spoke before of William Cowper’s Hymn “God moves in Mysterious ways” and I will share it with you here; because I think it needs to be sung more often and believed more passionately, since it is Biblical. Cowper wrote, “God moves in a mysterious way His wonders to perform; He plants His footsteps in the sea, and rides upon the storm. Ye fearful saints, fresh courage take; The clouds ye so much dread, Are big with mercy, and shall break with blessing on thy head. Judge not the Lord by feeble sense, But trust Him for His grace; Behind a frowning providence He hides a smiling face. Blind unbelief is sure to err, and scan His work in vain, God is His own interpreter, and He will make it plain. Amen!”

When we begin to think seriously about our short lives on the earth, we never come to any conclusions normally, because only those who are called of God, Re-birthed, Converted, Justified and Obedient, are equipped by God to really understand our lives and God’s purposes for our lives in His Creation. (Ephesians 2:1). We must consider that we not only must understand that we have this life (on earth), plus there is life after death on this earth. There is life eternal and therein is the great omission, of the people of God, and their failure to stress, or impress eternity on a lost world. We must understand that God gave everyone who is or will ever be born, this life that we live here on the earth; but He also limited the time we would spend here on the earth. Before the foundation of the earth God elected some to share heaven by salvation through faith in His Son Jesus. Others whom we refer to as ‘reprobate’ or (failing to pass the test, rejected by God).

Now, let me make haste to explain that none of the elect were chosen because of anything in them. The Bible tells us that that there were some elected or chosen by God and some reprobate or rejected; however it tells us that we are to preach, and share the gospel with everyone who will listen, both elect and reprobate. (Romans 1:28; 2nd Corinthians 13:5; 2nd Timothy 3:1-9; Titus 10-16). Now, some preachers will not preach that truth, but it is the truth and what people should know is, that I don’t know and they don’t know who can be saved; and the only proof of election is when that person becomes a child of God. So if you are really interested in being saved, don’t stand back on the assumption that you may not be elect. Just come to the cross and throw yourself on God’s grace. That in and of itself is part of real faith.

Reference our creation and the when, why and so forth of it, we can begin in the beginning and the revealing of the Creator and His Creation, we find that God created everything including man and in order to give man an idea of His place in the scheme of things, God created man out of the dust of the earth; and then created a help-meet for him from his own rib. God did not stop there, but instead He set up the building blocks of a society. He made Adam, and Eve and then demonstrated marriage as He structured the family and made it the foundation of His creation. He instructed Adam and Eve to be fruitful and multiply, to fill the earth and subdue it, to have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living things that moves on the earth (Genesis 1:28).

Having done that God saw all that He had made, and indeed it was very good (Genesis 1:31). Now, in that moment when everything He had made was very good, everything was perfect because Adam had not sinned. We can move on to the next two chapters of Genesis and we find God as He establishes a proper work cycle for mankind, which were set as six days in which to work and one day of rest, in which man was to rest his body and restore his soul. Then God prepared a paradise which we call Eden. This garden of Eden contained every tree that was pleasant to look at and good for food, He placed Adam in the garden and instructed Him to tend and keep it, or to cultivate it . God commanded Adam that he could partake of every tree (freely eat), with the exception of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. God warned Adam that if he ever ate of that tree, he would surely die. Then the Bible tells us that God took Adam’s rib and made Eve and gave her to Adam to complete Him and be His helpmate.

Adam and Eve were birthed by God in innocence, but they had the potential to change and apparently it wasn’t long before the serpent arranged a meeting with the weaker vessel, Eve, and she could not resist his temptation to eat of the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, and she tempted Adam to eat of it too. As soon as they ate of the fruit of the that tree, their eyes were opened, they were no longer innocent and they knew the difference between good and evil. As soon as their eyes were opened, they realized that they were both naked and they sought for a way to cover their nakedness, they sewed fig leaves together for covering their genitals. Read chapters 1-3 of Genesis to confirm all that I am saying here. This was the first great watershed for mankind in the world. Man went in an instant, from being innocent, having the Spirit of God in Him, able to commune and walk with God, having the potential to live forever had he not sinned; however Adam chose to disregard God and lose all the blessings of God.

Now, it may be proper for us to question why God created us here on the earth, but about the only answer is that God did, in fact, create man. Since God did create us and we find ourselves here today living and being either blessed or cursed because of our attitudes and our actions, perhaps we should ask ourselves different questions. Maybe a good question for us to ask ourselves is, what have I done with the time that God has given me here so far, and if we are not satisfied then we might question why.

We don’t have to look far to find that there is life all around us and if we look closely we will see that there are all levels of life and by that I mean that in both a physical and a spiritual sense. If we look around us we find people in a physical sense, or a material sense, and some are living high on the hog’, which means that they have lots of money and the things that money can buy, these would be people like Bill Gates, and Warren Buffet and others who are either billionaires or close to it. Then there are those who live on a much lower level of material blessing, some of these would be living in poverty. What’s the difference’

Probably in most cases it would boil down to educational levels, home life, levels of desire for success and just plain luck. It is interesting to note that people who were even in worse financial shape than people in our time never considered themselves to be as unfortunate or as dependent as some people in our day. The difference is that most of the people who went through the depression of the 20’s and 30’s had a different disposition and most saw the glass half full rather than seeing it half empty. If we see our glass half full it means that we see the possibility of having it filled at some time in the future, but if we see it as half empty, we see it as being emptied. That is the difference in being optimistic and pessimistic. That makes a great difference in your level of life. God creates us at birth basically equal; but that leaves the proposition open for the individual to take advantage of opportunities in his life or just get by, never making much progress.

There is a completely different aspect to our lives that manifests itself in our Spiritual life. Did you recognize that a person is born physically into this world and they are born dying. None of us has tomorrow promised, and many will die before this day is over; however those whom God calls and quickens (brings back Spiritual life to them), will the same day that God saves them, begin to live their eternal life. Everyone who has ever been born will spend an eternity somewhere after they pass from this physical life. The problem is that so many in our day are people who live for the moment, for the day and never think about tomorrow. That is obvious in what we see about us every day. We are all born breathing the same air, being wet by God’s rain and warmed by the same sun, and we all walk the same earth; however there will always be a difference because of the way we perceive our lives and the manner we go about them. What can we expect when we thumb our noses at God and break all of His laws, never considering that one day we will stand before Him to give an account for our lives.

We should understand that there are only two kinds of people in the world today. There are saved people and lost people; and there are not any people in between. If you are almost saved, you are 100% lost! The saved people are going to go to heaven, and the lost people are going to spend eternity in torment and pain in hell, separated from God. If we come to realize that we are sinners (because we are born under the wrath of God), and we care enough to seek God, then we will be saved from wrath. But we have to understand that as we are born, we are condemned because we have not sought God and His righteousness; because we are trying to conjure up our own righteousness which is never enough. We who have been created in the image of the Almighty, given senses that no other creature has, seem destined to squander the blessing of God because we are either to lazy or too hard headed and self-consumed to reach out to the outstretched hand of our Creator.

Frances Schaeffer said and I quote “God does not die on the day when we cease to believe in a personal deity, but we die on the day when our lives cease to be illuminated by the steady radiance, renewed daily, of a wonder, the source of which is beyond all reason.” All too often we suffer here in this short life that we have on the earth, because we close our minds to the reality and possibilities of who we really are and what God can do through us. We suffer eternal condemnation because we close our minds to the reality of our Creator and His grace and mercy toward those who will ever stop and consider their plight before a holy God.

Stop and consider for a moment about what God gave us when He created us. God did not simply heap up a pile of dirt and call it man but leave us without true life; and true life is life with a spirit that can commune with God and understand God and obey God. God formed a man and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life. Now that man was one of a kind, as he was Adam, who became the Federal head of mankind. If you are alive today, you are a descendant of Adam.

We should be able to look back to the Creation account and see our resemblance to Adam. Consider that God created Adam, placed him in a paradise (Eden), granted him the possibility of living forever, gave him a wife and dominion over the rest of God’s earthly creation , he did not have to strive like we do today to raise crops etc; because He had every kind of fruit to eat from God’s garden. What did Adam do with all that God had given him He gave it away, all of it, his eternal life, his work free life, the paradise he lived in, his dominion over all things, and his connection to God. If we stop and think about it, many of us have done that same kind of thing. Where did your sin nature come from It came down from our grandfather Adam, and we will pass it on to all of our children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.

Why would Adam do something that silly Because he could; and God gave him the right to sinhe did not have to; but he sinned because he wanted to. Now, I think no one who is able to read this Bible Lesson would be dumb enough to do that kind of thing but we see it happening every day. So many steadfastly refuse to even consider that God has a plan for their lives and fail to look at the Word of God, and know the certainties of this life we live here, and prepare for eternity after death.

The Bible is not a book that is hidden from people. The Bible and people who know and can teach the Word of God are everywhere. But what have people decided to do about the inspired Word of God Some ignore it, some rewrite it, some co-opt it and make it secondary to some of the books that has no authority, but better suits our tastes. Whether we chose to ignore the Bible or to study and understand God’s plan for our lives, the fact remains that it was given us to be a lamp to our feet and a light to our path (Psalms 119:105). I know that so many people have learned the little excuse about I can’t understand the Bible it is so deep’.

Well, the Bible gives us direction about becoming wise, and the Bible says “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to himbut ask in faith.” James 1:5-6. Men have a common fear and is fear of the unknown. We are as my grandfather used to say, too lazy to work, and too nervous to steal. Now let me remind you right here that my grandfather was simply using that saying to cause people to think not to make them steal, if they were too lazy to work for their families. We are afraid of success, but fear trying to succeed, for fear that we will fail. I think sometimes that we are even afraid of being afraid. If men would be men enough to stand upon God’s Word and never give in or give up, we would be a world where there would be no hunger or war or pain.

We, like Adam, have failed ourselves and failed our God; but we worship and serve a God that is a God of second and even third chances. As long as we have breath and life we are not out of the reach of our loving and merciful God. What shape is your life in today Are you where you want to be with God and where God wants you to be If you are not, what’s holding you back Is it fear or is it lack of faith. Strive to know God through faith in His Son Jesus Christ, because God overcomes it all, and really we cannot know and appreciate ourselves until we know and appreciate and enjoy God for Who He is and what He has done for us.

We dare not fool ourselves and begin to think that just because we hear so many voices proclaiming that “there is no God”, or this or that one is the true God, we have to stand on the Inspired Word of God the Bible and the only God that exists is the God who created it all in the beginning and is Sovereign over it all, including those who claim to serve other gods’. We can know ourselves completely if we know and follow the commandments, precepts, and statutes of the only revealed God, Jehovah. God has told us how important that He considered us because He gave us dominion over the rest of creation. He warned us about sin and it’s consequences (Romans 6:23), He planned the only way for us to be saved from condemnation (Romans 8:1). He lays out paths of righteousness for us to follow to assure that our lives will glorify Him and make us productive as we live here on the earth and fits us for heaven Psalms 119).

We are alive only as we live in Jesus Christ, having been crucified with him and resurrected with him to walk in newness of life. Romans 6:1-14. God warns us that our time here on this earth is limited as He says to us through the inspired writers.. “My life is wind (Job 7:70, “my days are swifter than a weavers shuttle” Job (7:6), Life is described in the Psalms “as a fading flower or a falling leaf, as grass, as a flower of the field (Psalms 103:15-16; and in James 4:14, as a vapor, that appears for a little time, and then vanishes away.

With that in mind, how should we live Should we live like the majority of those who live in darkness, fearful of losing what little they have gained, fearful of death and what lies beyondor can we, by faith, live lives that reflect the dedication and obedience of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ It is not easy but it is made possible by the one who loved us and gave Himself for us (Philippians 4:13). Florence Nightingale had this to say about life, “life is a hard fight, a struggle, a wrestling with the principle of evil, hand to hand, foot to foot. Every inch of the way is disputed. The night is given to us to take breath, to pray, to drink deep at the fountain of power. The day, to use the strength which has been given us, to go forth to work with it till the evening.” Yes our physical lives are tough but Christ has overcome it all and we are simply walking in His footsteps. This time on earth is short but eternity is just around the corner.are you ready to face the Judge

Until next time,

may God bless and keep you

This is Bro. Bob