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PAMEASTERDAY dot COM. Rev. Pam Easterday
When someone says they believe in the biblical creation story, I say, “me too. Which one is your favorite?” There are quite a few. If you say you believe in the Genesis creation story, again I might ask, “Which one?” There is a lot to like in the many loving stories in the Bible. The Genesis 1 story begins with God's Spirit or Breath or Wind sweeping over the surface of watery darkness. Then God spoke each element into being. Our Creator is so powerful as to make something out of nothing with just desire. Land, sky, plants and creatures all grew and developed because God willed them to be so. Awesome. And then, God created humans. Everything else had been good, but these creatures (us), male and female in God's image, the Holy One called very good. What a joy and a promise to be God's crowning achievement!
Or perhaps you prefer the story that begins with Genesis 2:4. Here, humanity is created because the LORD (YHWH) needed farmers to till the fertile garden. Indeed, the first human is called Adam; Adam comes from adamah, dirt. In other words, we are earthlings! This story emphasizes man and woman as workers, side-by-side. Both Genesis stories give us care of creation just as God tends all of us.
Or perhaps your favorite biblical creation story is the beginning of the Gospel of John. “In the beginning was the Word (logos), and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through him and without him not one thing came into being,” (NRSV). There are deep riches in the John description of Jesus, the Messiah: all that logos can mean besides word, what this borrows from Wisdom of Proverbs 8, and the fact that the eternal, divine nature called logos pitched a tent among mere humans.
Scholars and believers have spent lifetimes studying these beautifully meaningful stories of creation. Exploring these writings helps us accept God's steadfast love and care. With the response of the Spirit within us, they help us know our Source's heart and mind. Living in faith communities, studying ancient and modern love stories, we feel the Spirit within, that we might know and love the God of all.