Understatement

Moses does a neat job in understatement in Genesis 1.  You could choose any aspect of creation to come up with astonishing fecundity of imagination but let’s just take the plants as an example, or more specifically the flowers of plants.

Here are some pictures I took this afternoon at Russborough House.  Well worth a visit by the way, and at this time of year you simply must visit the garden of Eden which is their Rhododendron Garden at the back of the house from which the following pictures have been taken.

So God says, “Let the land produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds.”

I guess He must have said a lot more also – I think Moses is given to understatement.  But I guess also where do you begin?Magnolia in the Rhododendron Garden at Russborough House

Well here’s a part of the conversation perhaps: “Let’s create a sheltered beauty that, when it appears, will reflect purity and innocence, fragility and perfection all at once.”

Voila! A magnolia (and a lot of other flowers also).

Elsewhere I have written about the amazing stored program that is a seed.  Flowers are part of that amazing idea that is reproduction.  I think God loves that idea a lot, he seems to have reserved some his most Red Rhododendronsbeautiful creations to carry it out.

So God says: “Lets create fire and invitation, embrace and sustenance all at once.” Voila! A rhododendron.

What kind of Mind was it that thought of bees?  They are beautiful in their own right and absolutely indispensable for the reproduction of many plants.  And what a way to do it!  They are looking for something else altogether when they come to a plant (nectar) and only take away the pollen by accident – designed accident that is.  Hence the invitation, embrace and sustenance in these flowers (and in lots of others).

And so we come to the crown of His creation.  For we have been created to appreciate these things.  Evolutionists and atheists would try, if they could, to rob us of that.

God did it all in 6 days and rested on the 7th knowing that from then on His physical creation would run itself.  This leaves Him free to rest and think about getting involved in the creation of each soul.  And relationship with them.  And the cost of that.

Seeds and Trees

Of all the things a man may see, few are as beautiful as a tree.  It is an astonishing creation.

First of all there is the seed.  A seed of a birch tree contains the program to grow a birch tree, an acorn contains the program to grow an oak, a beech nut to grow a beech, etc.  Unless a seed falls into the ground and “dies” it remains dormant, dead and lifeless.  Such a contradiction, a seed must die to create life.  A seetreed is a self replicating programmed machine that has a battery (or inbuilt food supply), sensors and two separate growth mechanisms.  The sensors detect the conditions around the seed and when the soil conditions are exactly right (heat, humidity and possibly substance) it starts its self destruct sequence.  The root contains sensors to detect gravity and it uses the food supply to grow downwards.  The shoot contains sensors to detect light and it uses the food supply to grow upwards.  Once the root detects water it moves towards it and starts passing it and muck/ minerals up to the shoot.  The shoot begins to collect sunshine and carbon dioxide combines it with the water and muck and starts to make a tree.  It then no longer needs the battery but has its own power supply which it uses for the rest of its life.  The seed has done its job then and is no longer required.

Jesus said that His word is like a seed (Mark 4, etc.) and like a seed, if it is planted into the right conditions in our heart it produces a shoot.  As we continue to feed the shoot it produces a plant and perhaps a tree of life to others as they begin to eat the fruit of our feeding of that word within us.

God wants to recreate the Garden of Eden in the midst of our souls with the tree of His life in its centre.  Our souls are enormous and all types of things can grow there hidden away in corners or out in the open.  If we feed whatever is pure, whatever is noble, whatever is of good report in our lives and continuously work to remove the weeds of thoughts that so easily fly in from all sorts of angles then we become those who can bless others.

Jesus uses His word of life to make the muck and mess of our lives into something beautiful.

The sower sows the word

Luke 8:11 explains that when the Scripture talks about seed it  is referring to the word of God.  Its one of those key verses like Rev. 1:20 which explains an object picture that God uses to describe something spiritual.

The parable of the sower in Matthew 13, Mark 4 and Luke 8 is an important one to understand (Mk 4:13).  Seeing our souls as a garden enclosed (Song 4:12) helps.  It is a very large garden capable of growing all sorts of trees and plants.  Just like any garden, if it is left untended it will grow weeds.  The best thing is to clear it, break it up (Hosea 10:12) and sow the word of God.

However there is a more general sense to the parable of the sower.  If we are sowing the word by preaching it (Romans 10:14,17) then we can probably expect 4 types of hearts upon which it will land:  hard ones, stony ones, congested ones and noble ones.  If we look at the parable of the sower in isolation then it would appear that only about a quarter of the people who hear the word produce fruit.

But Jeremiah 23:28-29 gives us some idea of the power of that word and some hope to those who may think their heart is hard, stony or clogged up with the cares of this life:

“Is not My word like a fire?” says the Lord, “and like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces?”

The fire burns up the thorns and the hammer breaks up the path and stones.  A seed can have tremendous power in even in the most adverse conditions.  God’s word is even more effective in the heart.