Viewpoint of Mark Cadwallader, Creation Moments Board Chairman
Last week I witnessed another glorious sunset. It was beautiful! I sent the picture to a friend who exclaimed, WOW! And it wasn’t a sunset over the ocean. It wasn’t over a beautiful lake nestled in the mountains. It was at a landfill – a trash dump! But it was inspiring and touching, nonetheless. Indeed, “The heavens declare the glory of God” (Psalm 19:1).
Creation facilitates our reflection on the wondrous beauty of the Lord, and our inquiry into the mystery of His majesty. In the midst of the worst conditions, He is with us, ready to commune with us. Even in the biggest messes we might make, He is ready to share with us His glory, His love and His wisdom. “If I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there” (Psalm 139:8b). And He desires us to desire Him! – promising a fabulous blessing in doing so!
Many of us feel that the world is at war with us in our biblical views and values. Indeed, it is! The Bible tells us so, and the Holy Spirit confirms it to our hearts. But as the Psalmist says, “Though war should rise against me, in (spite of) this will I be confident. One thing have I desired of the LORD, that one thing I seek. That I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life; to behold (gaze upon) the beauty of the LORD and to enquire in his temple” (Psalm 27:4). And the Psalm goes on to describe the protection and the joy that follows from embracing our opportunity “to dwell in the house of the Lord”.
This world is not our home. And we have an innate longing for an age, for a world that has not yet come! C.S. Lewis writes about how our experience with the fallen created order awakens within us a sense that there is more – something other, something beyond the natural world. He says in Mere Christianity, “If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world.” The beauty that still lingers and is resident within even a fallen creation gives us the hint.
Lewis says in his introduction to George MacDonald’s Phantastes, “The quality which enchants us turns out to be the quality of the ultimately real universe, the divine, magical, terrifying, and ecstatic reality in which we all live.” That’s why his Narnia books hold such fascination to folks. As do his fellow member of their writer’s group at Oxford “The Inklings”, the Catholic literary genius JRR Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings series. The fantastical is the ultimate reality!
We’ve written recently how traveling at the speed of light to arrive instantly across the universe is a science fiction “reality” because of how time and space is a continuum and can be “warped”. Imagine being able to travel like that in supernatural bodies, and then come back to joyful love and fellowship in a special place like the 1,500-miles-on-a-side cube of the New Jerusalem! Fantastic and fantastical? Yes!
Lewis observes in his book Miracles that we can only savor this world for the wonder that it really is when we appreciate it as the creation of a supernatural God. “Only Super-naturalists really see Nature. … To treat Nature as God, or as Everything, is to lose the whole pith and pleasure of her. Come out, look back and then you will see … this astonishing cataract of bears, babies, and bananas; this immoderate deluge of atoms, orchids, oranges, cancers, canaries, fleas, gases, tornadoes, and toads. How could you have ever thought this was ultimate reality? … The ‘vanity’ (futility, frustration, and infirmity) to which she was subjected was her [nature’s] disease, not her essence.”
Like all of us, Nature, though wondrous and awesome, is in need of redemption. The “essence” of Nature points us to her Awesome Maker. And the “disease” within her – the futility, corruption, sin, and harsh cruelty – instructs us to desire, in fact, to have an “earnest expectation” (Romans 8) for our full redemption.
Creation teaches a supernatural God who created ex-nihilo (out of nothing). This is the true perspective, the “supernaturalism” of the ultimate reality! Yet nature-based religion is the go-to for sinful mankind. Hence, modern science is restricted to “naturalism” – natural, nature-based processes and assumptions. In league with Satan, “the god of this world”, “the father of lies” and the great “deceiver of the nations”, the Bible tells us how the history of mankind is one of rebellion against our Maker. We desire instead the “enlightenment” of the Serpent. Mankind wants to elevate himself in pride to be “as gods”. And, thus, God-less humanism, undergirded by evolution with its offshoot utopian vision of commune-ism, is the easy sell to an age where truth has been upended.
In many ways, modern civilization has been a product of a biblical worldview. But there is a great evil which seeks to tear down civilization as we know it – to destroy the biblical foundations which uphold civilization. Marxism, for example, has been noted for its roots in Satanic rebellion. Tear down the traditional and the good to usher in and make a new world order. In Marxist theory, upheld by evolutionism, it is the progress of struggle called “Dialectic Materialism”. “Dialectic” for their idea of ongoing struggle between “thesis” and “antithesis”. And “Materialism” for their idea that there is no Supernatural.
Prefiguring Marxism, Nimrod, the mighty rebel, led a rebellious movement of humanist pride at Babel. And he rallied the people to again seek, even after the judgment of the Great Deluge, the enlightenment of the Serpent. The ancient Jewish history books of Jasher and Josephus describe more detail about this. Jasher points out how Nimrod used his “wise men and conjurors” to help him. These were sorcerers practicing witchcraft and using deceitful power to dominate, manipulate and control people and, to an extent, nature. What the Bible calls “doctrines of devils” (1 Timothy 4:1) are by definition sourced under the “evil one” – our great adversary, Satan.
The Bible is true in all its detail. And Creation is front-and-center in declaring the Supernatural ultimate reality, and the power and goodness of our Great Creator. Creation truth is foundational to the gospel and will be preached with it even to the very end of this age – to “every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people” (Revelation 14:6).
Thank you for being part of this great plan of God! We rejoice in having this great purpose set before us as we contemplate our everlasting dwelling in the “temple” of the LORD!
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