Become – Sabbath and Slowing- Creation – Stephen Orr 23/05/21

Passage: Psalm 19:1 The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. 2 Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge. 3 There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard. 4 Their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world. In the heavens he has pitched a tent for the sun, 5 which is like a bridegroom coming forth from his pavilion, like a champion rejoicing to run his course. 6 It rises at one end of the heavens and makes its circuit to the other; nothing is hidden from its heat.

Creation

Hopefully over this past few weeks we have seen the importance of Sabbath, how slowing, resting and simplicity are important habits for our spiritual formation. As we embrace Sabbath, doing things that draw our attention to God, worshipping, resting, praying and playing, for many these draw our attention to the beauty of nature and the wonder of God’s creation.

Psalm 8:1 O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth! You have set your glory above the heavens. 2 From the lips of children and infants you have ordained praise because of your enemies, to silence the foe and the avenger. 3 When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, 4 what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him? 5 You made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor. 6 You made him ruler over the works of your hands; you put everything under his feet: 7 all flocks and herds, and the beasts of the field, 8 the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea, all that swim the paths of the seas. 9 O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!

Creation draws our attention to God. 

As we read Genesis 1 we see “And God saw that it was good” repeated many times, reminding us how God feel about his creation.

Read Genesis 1:28 this is the first time God spoke to human kind, what did God tell them to do?

28 God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue (work the earth) it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”

Genesis 2:15, helps us to further understand what humankind are to do.

15 The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work (to serve) it and take care of it (keep it safe).

“Ruling and serving creation is humanity’s first mission on earth, and God never repealed the mandate.”
Dave Bookless “the great commission given us by Jesus in the New Testament must be held alongside the very first great commission God gave to us at the start of the Bible. In Genesis 1, God’s very first words to human beings are about ruling over and caring for creation, the fish, the birds and all other living creatures, for God’s sake. This is if you like, a universal job description of what it means to be human. To the question, “Why are we here?” The ultimate answer has to be: “To worship and serve God.” The first element of that worship and service that the Bible talks about is creation care.
(Christopher Wright in ‘The mission of God’s people’ says)

To Care for Creation was human kinds first mission, our purpose.

Have we as individuals and a church embraced this mission?

How can we serve and look after creation?

What can we learn from how Jesus served?

Do you agree with the statement “Christian should lead the way in environmental issues”?

How does creation care and simplicity complement each other?

Do you think how we treat the environment and speak about creation can help us to point others to god and share the love of Jesus? How?

Having considered creation care are you going to change your lifestyle?

Apply

What have I found interesting? 

What has challenged my life, attitudes and actions

How would this habit help me to become more like Jesus?

How would this habit help me to introduce others to Jesus?

What practical steps do I need to take to incorporate this habit into my life?

Is there there anything I need to pray about, explore further or extra help I need?

Is there someone I should to share with, pray with or encourage

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