DayBreaks for 08/08/13 – What Then About Junk?
From the DayBreaks archive, dated 08/08/2003:
Genesis 1:31 – “God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning–the sixth day.” (NIV)
It has always been interesting to me that after all the first 5 days of creation when God created plants, animals, rocks, planets, stars and such, that God took time at the end of each day to examine His work. Scripture says that when He did this, he saw “that it was good”. There is great satisfaction to be taken in doing a job well – and God does things superlatively! But there is a slight difference after day six when God creates man. It says that God saw what He’d done and it was “very good”. The only difference between the first 5 days and the end of the 6th day was the creation of man – and God proclaims it to be “very good”!
There is a popular saying in some Christian circles: “I’m OK. God doesn’t make junk!” And that is very, very true. One of our former ministers, Dr. James Haddix, commented on this in a message and pointed out how easy it is to believe than when we see it on the little pink t-shirt of a beautiful little girl with flowing tresses. But, as he went on, what are we to make of it when we take that t-shirt and put it on the kidnapper-rapist-killer who takes that little girl from her home and family, brutalizes her and takes her life? It makes us begin to wonder if God made a mistake with that person, and it makes us wonder if perhaps sometimes, God does make junk.
He doesn’t. God is no more responsible for the heinous deeds of the rapist-killer than I am for a star running out of fuel in a galaxy far distant. The simple fact is that God created us – each and every one of us – as free, moral agents who can determine by our choices what we will become. As Dr. Gregory Boyd argues in his book, Satan and the Problem of Evil, evil had to exist if good was to exist. Hatred had to exist if love was to exist. Love cannot exist without a free choice – otherwise it is not love. Good cannot exist unless there is an opposite that makes good a choice available to humans. So the rapist-killer is not “junk” from God’s hand. He may have become devoid of any apparent redeeming qualities, but if he did, it happened as a result of his own choices and their consequences.
No, God doesn’t make junk. But I can make myself “junky”. So can you. We do it each day in a thousand little decisions – some of which happen without our ever really thinking about it. I don’t want to be junk and I don’t think you do, either. Let us seek His wisdom to recognize the right from wrong so we can choose wisely. As Dr. Haddix put it: “The issue isn’t whether God creates junk, but the fact that He doesn’t desire junk.” Neither should we.
2 Kings 18:32 – “…until I come and take you to a land like your own, a land of grain and new wine, a land of bread and vineyards, a land of olive trees and honey. Choose life and not death!” (NIV)
1 Peter 4:3 – “For you have spent enough time in the past doing what pagans choose to do-living in debauchery, lust, drunkenness, orgies, carousing and detestable idolatry.” (NIV)
PRAYER: Lord, we are quick to pass the blame on to You for what exists and what doesn’t exist because we don’t and can’t understand the realities You understand nor the structure of the moral universe in its totality. Forgive us for daring to sit in judgment of You! In Your name, Amen.
Copyright 2013 by Galen C. Dalrymple.
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