Monday, November 5, 2018

2018.11.05 Hopewell @Home ▫ Genesis 1:24-27

Questions for Littles: Who commanded the earth to bring forth the living creature? What three classes of kinds did He command it to bring forth? According to what did He command it to bring forth? According to what did God make the beast of the earth (v25)? According to what did God make the cattle? According to what did God make everything that creeps? What did God see? Then what did God say in v26? Whom did He say should produce the man? In what? According to what? What would the man have over the other creatures? What does God repeat twice in v27? What does God specifically mention about man at the end of v27? 
From the Scripture for this week’s sermon, we see many differences between man and animals that help us understand how to live in the renewed image of God as redeemed Christians.

First, while it is the animals’ job to reproduce after their own kind, it is mankind’s job to emphasize His likeness in us. Thinking about just some of the things that we have seen about God in this chapter, that means orderliness, diligence, goodness, discernment, generosity, and delight in life.

The problem is that fallen people don’t naturally image God in this way. When the Pharisees refused to believe in Jesus, He told them that they were of their father the devil. So, being fruitful and multiplying means something far more significant than having a bunch of babies.

It means family worship. It means discipline and instruction. It means keeping the Lord’s Day. It means getting to the public worship and teaching and prayer of the church. It means eagerly receiving the shepherding of the elders. For parents, it means: making use of all of those means of grace by which our covenant Lord has promised to save our children. Not in a season of having children? Being fruitful and multiplying also means doing your part for the congregation’s covenant children while also devoting yourself to evangelism of those outside of the congregation.

Second, we see that we are to fill the earth and subdue it. In other words, the entire planet is to be managed and adjusted in order to be made habitable for man—not in wasteful or ugly ways, but certainly with such variety and creativity and beauty in every different kind of place until the whole earth is filled with image-bearers imitating the Lord in all His glorious character. That is the true environmentalism!

Finally, we see that we have a duty to take dominion over the creatures. This, of course, does not mean to abuse the creatures. How could one think that after seeing what God has done throughout the creation to prepare and provide for each creature?! But it does mean valuing other people above all the animals, which is a proper recognition of the image of God in those people. And it means managing the other creatures well, so that they may afford people as much health, help, comfort, and pleasure as possible.
What part of Jesus’ plan for making and multiplying Christians could you most improve in?
Suggested Songs: ARP8 “Lord, Our Lord” or TPH8B “Lord, Our Lord, in All the Earth”

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