Thursday, November 23, 2017

What is God’s Creation?

For most people, the idea of creation begins with the story of Adam and Eve.

When reading the first chapter of Genesis it is good to ask questions. Perhaps not so much to get answers, but rather, to open ourselves up to different ideas. God’s creation is described in this book, which begins with:
“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” Gen 1:1
We delved into the meaning of this text in Who or What is God?

Towards the end of chapter 1, after the outer world was ‘created’, we come to the first mention of human beings.
“So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” Gen 1:27
We should take this text literally, “male and female he created them.” In other words, in the beginning human beings were male AND female, not male OR female. In other words, these human beings were hermaphrodites. Human beings didn’t become male or female until the rib story in Chapter 2.
So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and while he slept took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh; and the rib which the LORD God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man. Gen 2:21-22
The big question to ask now is this. Did life as we know it start in the Garden of Eden? Is this the beginning and end of God’s creation? At the same time, we should also ask: when Eve spoke to the snake and surrendered to temptation was that really the downfall of the human race? See Genesis 3

The Expulsion of Adam and Eve from Paradise JOHN MARTIN (1789–1854)

The main problem with understanding what actually took place is that we think that human beings were the same then as they are now. How could that possibly be! For a start, who can talk to snakes now? Seriously, we need to understand the true evolution of the human being in body, soul and spirit. St Paul gives us many clues in Corinthians 15. Let’s take a closer look at verses 44 to 46.
If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body. Thus it is written, "The first man Adam became a living being"; the last Adam became a life-giving spirit. But it is not the spiritual which is first but the natural, and then the spiritual. 1 Cor 15:44-46
In the Greek it actually says if there is body soma and soul psuche, there is also spirit pneuma. The word natural is not there. Then it says that the first man, protos anthropos, became a living soul, zao psuche. This describes a soul that is alive and breathing and we could take it to mean that the first Adam was able to exist for the first time in the atmosphere of this physical earth as soul-being with a physical body that breathes. Paul tells us that this is a crucial step in the process, the first step.

The last Adam, which is a reference to Christ crucified, became spiritually alive, pneuma zoopoioun. So this story tells us in detail about the evolutionary process of human beings pointing out that God’s creation evolves. If we are to fully understand ourselves as members of the human race, we need knowledge about how these three areas; body, soul and spirit, function. There is a process going on in which we can participate.

At this stage in our evolution we are very aware of our body, our senses are alive and we spend a lot of time seeking physical pleasure – from food, from contact with others, by keeping comfortable and warm etc. We have a dim awareness of our soul, as if in a dream, and we are mostly unaware of our spirit. Until we can wake up our soul and become consciously aware of its functioning, we will never be able to experience the life-giving spirit of which Paul speaks. It took me 25 years of study and six years of writing to put this information into a format that we can work with in our daily life – you will find it in my book I Connecting.

If we ever wonder what is wrong in the world today it is that these guiding principles are virtually unknown. Once we start to work with these three areas of our being, we have greater control of the way we respond to life bringing us to the experience of true freedom. This is why St John reports Jesus’ words in Jn 8:32 “you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” (See full quote Jn 8:30-32) Another road to freedom is to become aware of the principles the disciples represent in our being [link]. Then we will understand the ways in which God’s Creation evolves.

If you are interested in interpretations of the bible see Kristina's books on Amazon

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Where is God?

Creation of Adam by Michelangelo

When we are called to praise and worship God, where exactly is God at the time? And, is it important to know where God is for our praise and worship to have effect?

When we enter into the activity of praise and worship there is a sense of raising ourselves up, and therefore we usually look up. Do we think God is up there somewhere?

Often we enter into this activity when things are not going so well. Sometimes it seems that prayer is a way of escaping from ourselves when we defer to a higher being outside ourselves. It takes the pressure off, but we should ask if this deals with the cause of the pressure.

We don’t have to look very far to see that we live in a society of people that thrives on placing things outside themselves. If we trip on a step and break our leg the first thing we do is look for the fault in the step, it is much more difficult to accept that we were not paying attention to where we placed our foot. Each time we experience misfortune our instinct is to place blame elsewhere. Doesn’t worshiping God fall into this same category? Certainly in the face of misfortune, many people question the presence of God.

What if God is actually within us? St Paul seems to think so.
“For we are the temple of the living God; as God said, "I will live in them and move in them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.” 2 Cor 6:16
Conversion of Saint Paul by Giordano 

Paul is the one who opposed Jesus Christ until he had a firsthand experience of the presence of Christ, which caused him to fall to the ground and become blind -we could say that he fell off his under-stand-ing and he could no longer look outside himself. This is how it is recorded in the Bible.
But Saul, still breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest and asked him for letters to the synagogues at Damascus, so that if he found any belonging to the Way, men or women, he might bring them bound to Jerusalem. Now as he journeyed he approached Damascus, and suddenly a light from heaven flashed about him. And he fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, "Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?" And he said, "Who are you, Lord?" And he said, "I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting; but rise and enter the city, and you will be told what you are to do." The men who were traveling with him stood speechless, hearing the voice but seeing no one. Acts 9:1-7
Through this experience, Paul became aware that each human being can be the temple of the living God! How amazing.

What does this really mean in terms of everyday life? Naos, the Greek word for temple, refers to the inner shrine or sanctuary of the temple, the Holy Place and the Holy of Holies. A more accurate translation would be, “We are a holy place of a living God.”

Then we can ask, what is a living God? The word ‘living’ is zao, has a connection to the resurrection. It was the resurrected Christ Jesus that Paul experienced. He spoke of this in Colossians “the glory of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.” Col 1:27 The living God could be Christ and Christ is IN us, we are his temple. So, instead of placing our issues at the feet of an external God perhaps we should be dealing with our issues within us to make our temple, our inner shrine, the perfect dwelling place for Christ, the living God.

See previous blogpost “Who or what is God?”