Saturday, June 14, 2008

Genesis 7 - Until Love

I'm not sure if there were dinosaurs on the ark with Noah. They don't get a shout out in Genesis 7. None of the verses specifically say, "And then, with great difficulty, Noah captured a T-Rex and was able to strap him down in the basement of the ark."

But I do think that this section of Genesis is one of those Velcro places in the Bible. People get stuck here and argue here about the intricacies of the story. They discuss whether dinosaurs were on the ark, how old the earth is, where science and faith intersect.

I have to confess that I'm not an expert on a lot of that. I think it's a perfectly legitimate thing to discuss and I think God smiles when we learn and explore His truth and the nuances of it with the brains He gifted us with. I think that there is great beauty in understanding science and seeing God's fingerprints on the things we experience in this world from a biological, physical sense. I applaud the many people that use this approach as a way to engage people that don't know the Lord. I don't however think God's cool when we get stuck on any one particular issue.

With me, that issue isn't evolution, it's porn. I often rail against that topic, trying to get people and churches to see it as a problem and start working toward a plan to combat what I feel like is an out of control monster. But sometimes, I focus too much on the specifics of that issue and not enough on the actual people that are struggling with it.

What if we kept faith simple instead? What if the only things we got stuck on was loving God, loving others and loving ourselves? The other day I admitted, it's easier to traffic in ideas than it is to love people. People are messy and difficult to understand. An idea can be put in a box and controlled to an extent, mastered even a little. But until I've got my love for God, my love for others and my love for me (perhaps the hardest of the three) humming along nicely, I probably shouldn't get lost trying to figure out whether there was a brontosaurus on the ark or whatever happened to all the unicorns.

16 comments:

vikki (Philippines) said...

i wonder though if there were any particular animal that Noah was not a fan of and thought... Hmm, are you sure Lord? This? Seriously?
I'm sure he must have some sort of animal phobia and not being sure when the flood would end, that must be scary for him.

"everything is permissible but not everything is beneficial". just thinking out loud, i guess.

obviously, a great post yet again...

Brad said...

Jon,
As a long time reader and commenter of the original Prodigal Jon site, I am so glad you are back at the 97 seconds site. I LOVE SCL, but your insight on Genesis so far reminds me of the "good ol' days" when it felt like there were just a handful of us getting together to read you postings and wonderful insight. I can't wait to see what else God has in store for you. I will be the first to sign up for the GODapalooza tour featuring: Jon Acuff, Donald Miller, and Rob Bell with special guests Kirk Cameron, and the Christian Baldwin brother.
Keep up the excellent work,

B-Rad from the Bend

eastern ky pastor said...

I'm like vikki, why did God have to have mosquitos and snakes on the Ark?

Science can be a wonderful way of experiencing God. But, it cannot prove His existence, as many try to do. Science deals with what can be measured and tested. God's a lot bigger than that and can only be found through faith.

Your point about loving people more than ideas is powerful.

Tina said...

Awesome

Troy & Tara Livesay Family said...

Jon-
I agree with you ... we're fans of Ken Ham (www.answersingenesis.org) - yet we see exactly what you mean and won't throw punches at people who claim old earth theories -- getting hung up on it only gets in the way of loving people. There are huge HUGE issues in the world - fighting about this crap is stupid.
Love (the Jesus kind) conquers all things ... not the debate over the T-Rex and the Ark. DER!

t. in haiti

~ JaYmE ~ said...

You are one of my favorite bloggers I've ever found....I'm new, though, so don't get a big head or anything. :)

StitchinByTheLake said...

Worrying about one particular animal being on the Ark or not is like looking at only one square inch of the Mona Lisa...what's the point? Too many times we focus on the details when we need to see the big picture. I do that far too often - thanks for the post. Thought provoking!

Under the Florida Sun said...

A friend of mine sent me the link to your other blog - stuff christians think- then I got here.

The amazing thing about God is this - He created all people different - with different passions and different gifts. For those who have a passion to tell the Truth of how the world was Created - God uses them. For those like yourself who have other passions - God uses you too. He's just cool that way!

This way -all different areas get covered.

I'm thankful that I do have some creation science knowledge (just a little). It's come in handy in a couple different conversation with lost friends and family and I've been able to share Christ through that.

Looking forward to keeping up with your blogs. May you be Blessed as you reach out through the internet world.

robyn collins said...

i'm in total agreement with b-rad from the bend... i would like to be on the promotion committee for said event... and any other committees we deem necessary...
loving having you back here too...

jenn3 said...

"People are messy and difficult to understand."

So true! Love the post, as usual. I think we could all work on loving others more. (I know I can.)

Stacy from Louisville said...

What I love about Noah and the animals on the ark is that God included unclean animals, not just the ones who were considered clean. I think this goes directly to your point: God's love can overcome anything. When Noah sent out the birds, the raven is considered unclean, yet it was still used for God's work. God opens his arms now, as He did then, and says, "Just come. As you are. Let me love you and use you because no matter what, I can and will."

Christi B said...

For real, thank you for allowing him to use your gift of words. I feel as though me head is going ah ha, even though it is not brain surgery, it is simple and to the point, why do we come and make it so complex. Thank you again.

katdish said...

My husband and his brother disagree about whether God created the heavens and the earth in seven (literal, 24-hour) days, as many people do. Thanks for helping us keep the main thing the main thing. I can just picture Jesus listening in on some of our conversations and wanting to scream, "Oh, for the love of Me, would you just SHUT UP about the dinosaurs already!"

Jason said...

Just a side note:The animals (dinos included) on the ark could have been babies! Just make sure you have a pink one and a blue one. ;)

metalphil said...

Amen.

Flesheater said...

Very true.

I sometimes get caught up in small details... or even the large ones.
trying to figure out the truths of the bible.

and I always end up realizing its not important. If I love G-d and seek His face, He will show me what I NEED to know. and If I love Him that will be enough, I won't need to know the details, because all I need to know is that He loves me and I love Him.