In our last post, we began sharing how important it is to consider the theological implications of creation. To quote again, “Rather than just the outward interface, the interface between the church and the world, we have to recognize that within the Christian system, within our Bible and theology, the doctrine of the creation has a very fundamental place. If we tinker with the doctrine of creation in one way or another, the implications are far-reaching theologically within our whole system of what we believe, what the Bible teaches us to think.”
We considered this last time, specifically by starting where our Creator began in His word: Creation. Today we will seek to examine the theological implications when it comes to the end of time and the consummation of all things.
The Theological Implications of Creation Part 2
In the book of Revelation itself we have the phrase that the Lord has created all things for his own pleasure. Therefore you have to start with this theocentric or God-centered perspective.
Creation exists for the Lord. Amen. First and foremost, and not for us.
This addresses a more general trend within the broader church: the inclination to view God as a means to our own personal end.
It doesn’t matter what topic, people will end up harnessing the Lord as a means to advance their own agenda.
The view is this:
You have desires, goals, ambitions, things that you want to pursue. And you have a god who is all-powerful, all-knowing and controls everything to serve you, bringing to pass these things for you ultimately. Practically speaking this might be very subtle in one’s beliefs, but more often than not, it is there. This is truly deplorable.
When we look in the Bible, we see Joshua out surveying the battle just before going into Jericho, and he meets with Christ as the Captain of the host of the Lord. Joshua asks the Lord, Are you for us or against us? Christ responds neither. It is as if He is saying to Joshua, “I’m not on your agenda, and I’m certainly not on the agenda of the people there in Jericho, but I am on my own agenda.” Again, in our society, we have a man-centric view of salvation, where we try to get God on board with what we’re trying to do, but that’s not the way it is pictured in His word.
In the book of Revelation, we discover this very point:
Ultimately creation itself, everything that exists outside of God was created for his good pleasure and for God’s own purposes, for God’s own glory. That is the purpose of the existence of everything.
The answer to the Shorter Catechism’s question #1 is, Man’s chief end is to glorify God and to enjoy him forever. This is true of the whole universe. In one sense, we could say God’s chief end is to glorify himself. By definition, that’s necessary for God to be God -his principal interest has to be his own glory. So, in the end, we have the affirmation that God created everything for his own good pleasure.
In the book of Revelation, you have a history where God’s eternal purpose, which has been brought forth from the beginning is brought to a culmination. All of that is tied in with Christ. Therefore the God-centeredness is also a Christ-centeredness. The New Testament says that Christ was appointed, ordained, crucified, before the foundation of the world. And throughout history, Paul says in Romans 8, the creation itself has been groaning and moaning, waiting for the Revelation of the sons of God for the completion of the salvation of God’s people.
Here is a picture that might be helpful for children. You go to an art museum and they’ve procured some very fancy expensive artifact, and you show up for this event, and there are loads of people. The house is full, there are lights, and they have a sheet over this piece of artwork. Everybody’s waiting for the grand event. Eventually, they rip the sheet off, and everybody cheers as they get to see this magnificent piece. There’s a sense in which that’s a picture of what’s happening.
In the end, God has prepared, saved, and redeemed a church, a pride for himself. It is the grand finale where he pulls the sheet off to show this great work of redemption that he’s done. In Revelation 21, the church is a bride that’s descending; she’s a city coming down out of heaven. Ephesians 5 speaks of where the Lord is going to present his bride without spot or wrinkle. All of this is going to redound to the glory of Christ himself.
In summary, we see how our belief about creation, and what God has declared from the beginning to the very end has vast implications that affect every area of our lives. May he give us the grace to receive the entirety of his word with faith and share these things with others.
You might also like The Theater of Glory.
The above post has been created from an interview with Robert McCurley. To watch the full interview click HERE.
To access Rob McCurleys two sermons regarding this topic, you can do so on sermon audio.
Have you received your copy of the “In Six Days Creation Video Series” yet?
Find out more HERE.