IN THE BEGINNING GOD
PRESENT TENSE FAITH
SUNDAY FEB. 18, 2018
Scripture To Consider:
“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.”
“Then God said, ‘Let there be light;’ and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good; and God divided the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. So the evening and morning were the first day.” Genesis 1.1-5
Something To Consider:
Join with me as we return to the beginning to learn a much needed lesson of a lifetime. Genesis, the first book of the bible does not go into great detail explaining the existence of God. The book of Genesis does not attempt in any way, shape or form, to prove by statistics, charts, graphs, or any other means, a time table of God’s creating the world as we know it. The writer of Genesis declared his record of creation from a basic foundational belief based on faith, and from a human understanding that God has always existed. Genesis simply begins with the fact that God was, is, and forever shall be. That is precisely why believing is so vital to our beginning our journey to Jesus.
Therefore, in the beginning God! We cannot go back any further than in the beginning. How long ago was that? It was in the beginning! “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” And the writer records, “The earth was without form and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep.” But Isaiah writing under the influence of the Holy Spirit stated in Isaiah 45.18, “For thus says the LORD, who created the heavens, who is God, who formed the earth and made it, who has established it, who did not create it in vain [or void], who formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD, and there is no other.”
Something Else To Consider:
Now follow the thought process. “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” But the earth was in Genesis 1.2 without form and void. And yet Isaiah acknowledged that God formed the earth to be inhabited. Isaiah said that God did not create the earth in vain or void. At this point some speculate what they call the “Gap Theory,” meaning between verse 1 and verse 2 of Genesis chapter 1, something happened upon planet earth. And yet, the truth we are to dwell on is that, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” And that God created the earth with form and to be inhabited.
If we become guilty of following every suggested rabbit trail we might miss the biblical truth that in the beginning God! If we are easily sidetracked we may believe God is holding some truth from us and possibly lose sight of the spiritual importance of maintaining a present tense faith. According to the Word of God, it is not as important how or when we first begin to believe that in the beginning God, as it is much more important that our present tense faith sees us to the point of enduring to the end.
If we refuse to endure to the end, if we reject the call of Christ to overcome, how is it that we could think we should demand salvation from God, which the apostle Paul declares is nearer to us now, than when we first believed. Therefore, present tense faith is of much importance according to the Word of God and according to Jesus. But present tense faith though important, does not mean those who possess it are perfect in all of their ways. I wish to God we were! But that simply is not the case for those who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus and to endure to the end.
According to the apostle John’s first epistle, “If we [believers in Jesus] say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” There are religious groups who claim they can no longer sin. “Take heed [beware] that no one [yourself or any corrupt religious group] deceives you.” John continued by affirming, “If we confess our sins, He [God] is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make Him [God] a liar, and His Word [the Word of God] is not in us.” It is through confession and cleansing that we maintain a present tense faith and continue our living godly in Christ Jesus and our enduring to the end.
Something More To Consider:
The writer of Hebrews, in chapter 11, opens a window to the world of faith, by declaring; “Now faith [present tense faith] is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. For by it [present tense faith] the elders [Old Testament true spiritual leaders] obtained a good report. By faith [present tense faith] we understand that the worlds were framed by the Word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.” The worlds were framed or created and brought into existence by the Word of God, Jesus. Everything in all of creation exists because of the power and creative force of God’s Word, Jesus. Everything!
In the beginning God created everything! And yet, believing the account of creation in Genesis must be maintained by a present tense faith. For we also are told in Hebrews 11.6; “But without faith [present tense faith] it is impossible to please Him [God], for he [or she] who comes to God must first believe that He [God] is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him [by way of a present tense faith].”
When believing is accomplished by faith, together they create a desire to seek God without any need for further explanations of His existence. While faith pleases God, it is surprisingly the possessor of that present tense faith who is rewarded with a personal knowledge of God and the personal pleasure of His presence in their lives. To accomplish this we must possess present tense faith according to 1 John 1.8-10.
A Few Final Words:
John began his gospel much like Genesis; “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made.” In verse 14 John points his pen towards Jesus by writing, “And the Word became flesh [in the person of Jesus] and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” Paul, also speaking of Jesus in Colossians 1.16 declared for all to hear and to believe by faith; “For by Him [Jesus] all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible.” Everything!
In the beginning, no matter how long ago, God created the heavens and the earth to be inhabited by the human race in which God would eventually send His Son Jesus, in the fullness of His time, to seek and to save the lost! And that is where present tense faith becomes so rewarding. For if we are found by Jesus at our death or at His second coming, looking unto Him, the author and finisher of our present tense enduring to the end faith, we will gain the eternal reward of salvation and everlasting life with Christ Jesus, according to Jesus!
Jesus, who for the joy of our obtaining the opportunity to have our sins forgiven and to become saved, willingly endured the suffering of the cross as well as enduring the shame temporarily associated with His suffering on our behalf. Therefore, if we are found at His second coming or at our death looking unto Him with true present tense faith, then the light of Christ will indeed dispel all the worldly darkness of sin, death, and our fear of the grave!
Of course if we refuse to maintain an up to date present tense faith as the five foolish virgins of Matthew chapter 25, we too may hear those most dreaded words of Jesus, “Depart from Me, you worker of iniquity, I never knew you.” As leaders and or leaders in training, we are being prepared, proven, and created by the testing of our present tense faith. Whether we pass or fail will be determined by what lessons of a lifetime we learn on our journey to Jesus.
Therefore, we will continue our lesson learning journey to Jesus and realize what we learn in the beginning helps to create and to maintain a present tense faith in Jesus Christ and in the preserved written Word of God. For those of us living in what may prove to be the last days of man’s rule upon planet earth, what else could be more important to be found studying if and when Jesus is told by the Father, it is time! Let us be found looking up, for our redemption is nearer than when we first believed.
Our Father in heaven, create in us a present tense faith to believe, that in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth by the Word of God. In Him Always, Amen!