The expanse in the sky and their lights, the sea, vegetation, birds of the air, fish in the sea, animals and all creatures that move in the water and along the ground were created by God before humankind. ‘God is not a God of disorder’ (1 Corinthians 14:33) and so He ‘made the earth by his power; he founded the world by his wisdom and stretched out the heavens by his understanding’ (Jeremiah 10:12). In creating all else before mankind, God wanted us to learn from creation, and ‘rule over all the earth and over all the creatures’ (Genesis 1:26). However, some take it to extremes and ‘worshipped and served created things rather than the Creator- who is forever praised. Amen’ (Romans 1:25), while others neglect the earth, pollute the environment, and mistreat animals and people alike. God did not intend creation to be worshipped, neither to be abused because, ‘a righteous man cares for the needs of his animal, but the kindest acts of the wicked are cruel’ (Proverbs 12:10). Instead, God wanted creation to whisper to us mysteries about Him and our lives. Mysteries that only He Himself reveals to us through creation, and not by us seeking to know God through creation. Big Difference.
Besides taking care of creation, God wanted mankind to attain nuggets of wisdom from it. Paul writes, ‘For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities – his eternal power and divine nature- have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse’ (Romans 1:20). Job notices that creation ‘are but the outer fringe of his (God’s) works; how faint the whisper we hear of him! Who then can understand the thunder of his power?’ (Job 26:14). So he says, ‘I desire to speak to the Almighty’ (13:v3) and soon enough, God grants him this desire and speaks to him. God uses creation to make Job consider His greatness and power- for creation, viewed from God’s perspective only, draws us closer and not away from Him, and towards creation.
When God spoke to Job, He gave him some considerations from creation that everyone should ponder about. God tells Job, ‘Brace yourself like a man; and I will question you, and you will answer me’ (38:v3). This challenge also goes to the rest of humanity from God:
- Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell me, if you understand (v4)
- Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know! (v5)
- Who stretched a measuring line across it? On what were its footing set, or who laid its cornerstone- while the morning stars sang together and all the angels shouted for joy? (v5-7)
- Who shut up the seas behind doors when it burst forth from the womb . . . when I set limits for it . . .When I said, ‘This far you may come and no farther; here is where your proud waves halt’? (v8,10-11)
- Have you ever given orders to the morning, or shown the dawn its place, that it may take the earth by the edges and shake the wicked out of it? (v12)
- Have you journeyed to the springs of the sea or walked in the recess of the deep? (v16)
- Have the gates of death been shown to you? Have you seen the gates of the shadow of death? (v17)
- Have you comprehended the vast expanses of the earth? Tell me, if you know all this (v18)
- What is the way of the abode of light? And where does darkness reside? Can you take them to their places? Do you know the paths to their dwellings? (v19-20)
At this point, most if not all of us are tongue-tied, but some are still concocting theories and making calculations for they know. God says, ‘Surely you know, for you were already born! You have lived so many years!’ (v21), and so proceeds questioning;
- Have you entered the storehouses of the hail, which I reserve for times of trouble, for days of war and battle? (v22-23)
- Does the rain have a father? Who fathers the drops of dew? (v28)
- Can you bind the beautiful Pleiades? Can you loose the cords of Orion? Can you bring forth the constellations in their seasons? (v31-32)
- Do you know the laws of the heavens? Can you set up God’s dominion over the earth? (v33)
- Can you raise your voice to the clouds and cover yourself with a flood of water? (v34)
- Do you send lightning bolts on their way? Do they report to you, ‘Here we are’? (v35)
- Who endowed the heart with wisdom or gave understanding to the mind? (v36)
- Who provides food for the raven when its young cry out to God and wander about for lack of food? (v41)
- Do you watch when the doe bears her fawn? Do you count the months till they bear? Do you know the time they give birth? (39:v1)
- Do you give the horse his strength or clothe his neck with a flowing mane? Do you make him leap like a locust, striking terror with his proud snorting? (v19-20)
- Does the hawk take flight by your wisdom and spread his wings towards the south? (v26)
- Does the eagle soar at your command and build his nest on high? (v27)
God concludes by asking, ‘Will the one who contends with the Almighty correct him? Let him who accuses God answer him!’ (40:v1). ‘Let them come forward and speak; let us meet together at the place of judgement’ (Isaiah 41:1). But ‘Woe to him who quarrels with his Maker . . . do you question me about my children or give me orders about the work of my hands? It is I who made the earth and created mankind upon it’ (45:v9,11). God therefore gives us these considerations from creation to help us understand that, ‘everything under heaven belongs to me’ (41:v11). He asks, ‘Do you not know? Have you not heard? Has it not been told to you from the beginning? Have you not understood since the earth was founded? He (God) sits enthroned above the circle of the earth, and its people are like grasshoppers’ (Isaiah 40:21-22).
Considerations from creation helps us see that all creation knows and acknowledge its Maker and move at His command. The trees, stars, sun, animals and all creation recognize God and help us see His invisible hand, but man endowed with free-will lives as though he created himself. God even says, ‘The ox knows his master, the donkey his owner’s manger, but . . . my people do not understand’ (1:v3). While considering creation, we should therefore seek to follow the directions of our Creator as all creation does. Jeremiah writes, ‘I know, O Lord, that a man’s life is not his own; it is not for man to direct his steps’ (Jeremiah 10:23).
‘Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin; And yet I say unto you, that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which today is and tomorrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?’ ~ Matthew 6:28-30