The Universal God

The modern world has lost touch with the text describing the beginning. This absence of context has caused the seventh day in many ways to become an ideological and theological orphan. What makes matters worse is that is over the last two centuries, the worldview of the Bible’s readers has dramatically shifted. Most have adopted the world view of Evolution as the source of our beginning. But Evolution speaks of chance, not purpose. It envisions a process without an agent that initiates, guides, and completes it. It reflects a view of reality in which no day, especially the seventh day, has no meaningful point of context.

That Genesis leads the Biblical narrative, not some other book, is as important as the unity of Genesis. “That the bible begins with Genesis, not Exodus, with creation, not redemption, is of immeasurable importance for understanding all that follows.” The Old Testament takes as its point of beginning human history, not the beginning of Israel. Israel figures prominently in the restoration of what was lost. Restoration is the overwhelming theme of the Old Testament. But the first eleven chapters of the Biblical narrative have the broadest conceivable scope. They give us the reason restoration needs to happen.

The scope of Genesis is universal, affirming the value of the earth and all, and I mean all, its inhabitants without regard for ethnicity or nationality (see Genesis 1:28-30). Thus, the biblical narrative is based upon universality. Any attempt at narrowing the Bible’s focus yields to a truncated view of the Bible. It moves the focus from universal centered to Israel centered.  Other-centered to self-centered.

Because of sin, God allowed the world to be deconstructed. To put it back together, he chose a geographical area to become the crossroads between three continents.  God then chose a family to become a nation to aid Him in the process of restoration, which plays out upon the rest of the Bible. This choosing of a family or nation does not mean the Bible is exclusive to them, their purpose was to aid God in the process of restoring the entire world to Him.

Suppose, just suppose Yahweh is not in principle before everything else.  Suppose He is not the God of all reality.  In that case, God cannot be the one and only God because then God is not universal. So Yahweh maybe Israel’s God in oneness and exclusivity, but if he is not Israel’s God because He is first of all the God of all reality and of all humanity, then He is a nationalistic deity or an individualistic idol, one among others, actually no god at all. Therefore Genesis establishes that God is universal, the God of all Creation and all humanity.

Published by The Bible In Your Hand

Hi, I am Pastor Lester Bentley, a devoted husband, father, and Pastor for the Northeastern Wyoming District of the Rocky Mountain Conference of Seventh-day Adventist. I am committed to the great gospel commission as stated in Matthew 28:19, 20.

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