How are you when it comes to taking time off? Are you good at switching off or do you always seem to be in work mode? I have to admit that I am not very good at switching off. I enjoy what I do and I find that it is easy to keep on going when you should be taking a rest.
Believe it or not the Bible establishes the premise of taking periods of rest. When God made the world he made it in six days and then rested on the seventh (Genesis 2:2, the Bible). Why do we keep on working? Why is there restlessness about us as humans? Is that we never feel that the job is really done properly? Or are we not satisfied with what we have done? Is there a guilt thing that makes us feel that we have never done enough? Do we have to impress others? Or satisfy our own demands? There is not one simple answer but a lot of the above will no doubt apply.
So how did God manage to rest after making this world? Well when God does a job he does it to perfection. He could not have improved on His creation. It was perfect and he was content and satisfied with what he saw on the dawn of creation.
You may at this stage be saying – it doesn’t feel or look like a perfect world to me! And you are right. This world is not perfect but the Bible teaches us that it was when God made it, in Genesis 1 we read that it was good, good and indeed very good. So what went wrong? Why do we have climate disorders, earthquakes and eruptions? We cannot ignore the creatures that live on this planet. Why do we kill each other, hurt each other and damage this world? Why does everything get old, wear out, decay? We are on a downward spiral and nothing can stop these natural processes. Or can they be stopped?
Let’s answer the first question first. Why? You maybe don’t like the answer but the Bible does offer an explanation. ‘By one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin’ (The Book of Romans 5:12, the Bible). The reason why the downward spiral exists is that everything that is not of God and blessed by God will ultimately fail. God created the universe for our good but good can only be effective in the hands of the creator, God. When we handle good we corrupt it and it is tainted with our fallen nature. We like the first man, Adam , have made our choices and we ‘all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God’ (The Book of Romans 3:23, the Bible). God intended mankind to enjoy his blessings for ever free of corruption and death but Adam acts of rebellion condemned us all as guilty before God. You may feel that this is unfair but these are the facts as revealed by God in His word, the Bible.
Can the downward spiral be stopped? The message of Christianity is this. The ‘Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world’ (1 John 4:14, the Bible). This is not just climatic salvation, or economic salvation, or even ethical or moral salvation. All of those things will be effective in a future day but initially God offers personal salvation to individuals. The Lord Jesus Christ said (when in this world) ‘I have come that they might have life and that they might have it more abundantly’ (The Gospel of John 10:10, the Bible). He claimed that if a person took on board what he said and trusted Him and believed that God had sent him that, that person would cross the line from death to life, they would be raised to everlasting life at the Day of Judgement, that they would be saved (see The Gospel of John 3:36, 5:24, 11:25).
You might be asking how was all this possible? Was Jesus not just a good man? His claims are too great to be that of just a good man. He is either is the real thing or at best he was deluded and at worst a liar. Check it out, he claimed to come from heaven, he claimed to be equal with God, he claimed to fulfil Bible predictions, he announced that he would draw men to him upon dying, he predicted his own death and coming to life again after three days. These things are either true or false there is not middle ground.
All I can say to you if you are reading this blog is go, check it out for yourself. Read the Bible. Listen what God has to say. Trust Him. Take Him at His word. If you do e-mail on Stephen.firstname.lastname@example.org. I would love to hear from you.