Genesis 1-11 answers some of life’s biggest questions. Questions like “How were we created? What is our identity? How does sin affect our relationships with one another? Has what makes up our civilization been our focus more than God?” Our worldview is shaped by our natural world, human identity, human relationships, and civilization. It is by seeking truth in God’s Word that we can begin to build the foundation for a biblical worldview. Natural World
The teachings in Genesis chapters 1-11 have not only answered many of the questions I sought in my life, they have replaced false beliefs with truths. In Genesis chapter one, we learn many truths about the natural world we live in. The depths of those truths can be missed or dismissed if we do not individually seek them. It is only faith that gives us understanding of these truths. There have been many theories to how the world was created. To the believer there is no mystery we simply take God at his word and that it is true. “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth” (Genesis 1:1 KJV).
This verse not only reveals God created our natural world but also reveals that before anything was created or anyone was born, he already existed, and always was. He created a world with order and limits. Examples of these limits are found when “God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so.” (Genesis 1:11KJV). From this verse is a truth that reveals a limit was placed on everything that was created and that everything created cannot become anything other than what it is. Two cats can produce a variety of different cats but cannot produce anything other than a cat. A watermelon seed is not capable of growing into a palm tree, and a monkey cannot grow into a man. Human Identity
Mankind has an identity unlike anything else that God created. Man was created in his image. “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.” (Genesis 1:27 KJV) “God is a Spirit” (John 4:24 KJV); it is in his spiritual image that man was created. When God created Adam, man was in right standing with God, once Adam disobeyed God not only was he not in right relationship with God, but every man born thereafter was separated from their creator. The identity of man is most seen in the fall of man, when he disobeyed God. God created man to be innocent, meaning man had never sinned.
“And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden you mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you shalt not eat of it…” (Genesis 2:16-17 KJV) This command was given to Adam because God not only wanted man to be innocent but also righteous; He did not want man to be forced to have relationship with him. He desired man to choose to. For man to be righteous, he would have had to refuse to disobey God when given the choice. In Genesis we learn that man had a choice to obey God but when he disobeyed him, he no longer had the freedom to not sin because from then on all were born in sin. Human Relationships
The result of this sin nature resulted not only in death (separation from God) but produced a lust and pride in man that destroys relationships within family, friends, and neighbors. At this time there was no law from God. Man was to do all known good and to abstain from all known evil; he was to only approach God by blood sacrifice. The first child ever born was Cain who eventually had a younger brother Abel. “And Cain talked with Abel his brother: and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him.” (Genesis 4:8 KJV) Cain in his pride became a murderer. At this time God had not given man the right to govern other men and there was no law giving the right to punish others for murder until after the flood. Cain did face harsh consequences for murder becoming a fugitive and having God hide his face from him. Civilization
Cain now becoming a fugitive went on to build the first city to ever be recorded. “And Cain knew his wife; and she conceived, and bare Enoch: and he builded a city, and called the name of the city, after the name of his son, Enoch.” (Genesis 4:17 KJV) In Genesis chapter four we continue to see that in “the first civilization there were cities (vs. 17), farming and ranching (vs. 20), music (vs. 21), foundries (vs. 22), poetry (vss. 23-24), but no government. Each man lived according to his own conscience, for as yet there was no code of laws, and no kings or rulers.” ( Ellis: Rock of Ages Study Bible, pg. 12) These things that make up our civilization are great and wonderful for our lives but there are times that we place them first in our lives when God’s Word says to seek first his kingdom and his righteousness. (Matthew 6:33 KJV) Worldview Affect
Our faiths and our beliefs determine our actions and our course in life. Many people search for mysteries that are answered in God’s Word. “The early chapters of Genesis lay the foundation for the biblical worldview.” (Hindson & Towns: Illustrated Bible Survey, pg. 39) Our worldview affects our relationship with God, others, and the civilization we live in. Conclusion
It is by faith that we believe that God spoke our world into existence. Man’s identity was to be in the likeness of God; choosing to be disobedient, we have been separated from Him. Our relationship with others has been filled with conflict as the center of our lives revolves around us. God wants to bless us and it is his desire that we enjoy life and the things in life, but he desires to be first. Often we put ourselves before others and others before God when God’s design is to put him first, then others, then ourselves. If we are not careful, we can allow the natural world (earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes), our sinful nature (choosing to do wrong when we can choose to do right), our relationships with others, and the civilization around us to shape our worldview instead of the Word of God.
Ellis, Dr. Terry, and Dr. Jerry Rockwell, eds. Rock of Ages Study Bible. 4th ed. Rock of Ages Prison Ministry, 2012. Hindson, Edward E., and Elmer L. Towns. Illustrated Bible Survey: An Introduction. Nashville, Tenn.: B & H Academic, 2013. 39.