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Light out of darkness

Genesis 1 starts with this: "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." The next verse is somewhat strange: 2 Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.

How can it be formless if it was created? Let's keep that thought till another time. I want to concentrate on the next verse - verse 2: Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.

The words formless and empty are the Hebrews' tohu' and 'bohu'. Together, those words paint a picture of waste, lack of definition, uselessness, confusion, and desolation, in other words, complete chaos.

It was into this situation that the spirit of God (YHWH) arrived.

The book of Genesis is so important because it is the book of origin - in the beginning. Everything about mankind and our planet- in fact, our universe- started there. It is the basis of everything else revealed in scripture. To gain a deeper understanding of life, creation, humanity and ourselves, we start in Genesis.

Here it is evident that the Lord was about to do something. Here is revealed the process of the Creator in bringing form, substance, order and abundance into barrenness. Take note as you read down the verses, and observe the process. The Bible was inspired by YHWH to reveal not to hide, so read with that understanding that it is a revelation of God, his mind and in these passages, his process. The revelations are given to inform, educate and enable us to achieve his result.

So, amid chaos, God's spirit - hovered - the word there is 'rahap' which means to 'move lightly', tremble or shake. I would suggest that he pondered and formed in himself what he was going to do(speak) because, in the very next verse, he spoke into being:

"And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light."

What the Lord reminded me of is that the creation (or should I say recreation) account from verses 2 to 25 in Genesis, was not bringing beauty out of order it was God bringing order, life and light out of complete chaos, barrenness and darkness. But he was not fazed because the darkness is nothing to him.

"even the darkness will not be dark to you;

the night will shine like the day,

for darkness is as light to you." Psalm 139:12

What I am getting at is that in the same way that the whole planet got life back into it in the stages of creation, it is the same way Jesus came to bring life back into our lives, communities and world. It is in stages but it is definite.

I had someone write to me about the difficulties they face and that despite preaching, sending missionaries, and trying to unify the church leaders to achieve social transformation, they have seen so little progress. I could empathise with them. The answer of God was to point me to these scriptures for my own life, the work he has given his Church and you.

The answer is to study and follow the steps of creation - or recreation.

Note, however, the words that brought order were the WORDS of YHWH nothing else.

"For what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ."

And this whole (re)creation was deliberate and in stages.

The 'trick' is to know what you want to see in your world, be sure it conforms to what God has already said and speak it. But it does not just stop there, God, for example, in verses 6 -8 :,

"And God said, “Let there be a vault between the waters to separate water from water.” So God made the vault and separated the water under the vault from the water above it. And it was so. God called the vault “sky.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the second day."

He spoke his desire/order into the confusion, and then he formed it into how it should be. He then established what he had done by naming it. A name establishes character and destiny - it sets the path for the object or person. In short, God perpetuated the purpose of the sky he created.

We have the power and knowledge in the word of God to bring order out of chaos, be it in our lives, church or society. We need patience and to apply his word. Be solution-minded like God is, follow his process and never give up. Like our Father, darkness is nothing to us.

“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead, they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house." Matthew 5:14-15

There is no assignment we have been given that we cannot carry out.

First published Dec 2, 2022

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