Spent the past weekend being reminded of the truth that God laid out for us so long ago, all the way back to the beginning, as in in the beginning…a truth which we’ve all heard and we all know inherently within our being, even if we are not actually conscious of it in our minds.
In the Genesis creation account, God declares much to be good, and when I say he declares much to be good, I mean he declares everything he has created to be good. And God saw that the light was good. God called the dry land Earth, and the waters that were gathered together he called Seas. And God saw that it was good. Over and over again, And God saw that it was good. Until we get to the sixth day, And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day. All that God made, the heavens and the earth, the waters and the land, the seas and the heavens, the plants trees and vegetation, all the animals of the sea and on the dry land, everything God created in and on this world, of which we sing in songs so joyfully that it is not our home, is all good, good, and then, just in case you missed it, very good. God gave us a beautiful, wonderful, good, good and very good creation (His words, not mine). Take and do with that what you will.
But now to the point. What is the first thing in the Bible that is called not good by God? “Then the Lord God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.” Men – don’t miss this and don’t get this twisted. It is not good that the man should be alone. It is not good for man be alone. Yes, man, it is not good for you to be alone. Including you. And you women also, but of course women don’t seem to struggle with this as much as men.
Because we men, well, after all, we are men. We are born and raised, proud, red-blooded, pick ourselves by the bootstraps, don’t cry, never let ‘em see you sweat, American men. This is the script we live by, that is how we are taught to live. And even when we are surrounded by a crowd of people, we live this way, isolated, behind our own walls, sharing nothing of ourselves.
This is BS. This is not how we were created. The first thing in the Bible that is declared to be not good is for man to be alone, yet we all think we are supposed to be the Lone Ranger. This, as God the Father would say, is not good. We are not meant to be alone.
We are made for community. You are made for community. You were made in the image of a God who has never not been part of a community himself (Father, Son and Holy Spirit). We are born into community, community is not something we add to ourselves after the fact. You are born of a father and a mother, brought forth from your mothers very womb. We came out naked as a jay bird (Who told you you were naked?), unable go do anything for yourself. Literally, without the community you were born into, you would not survive more than a day or two.
Think about this minute. Not only does God tell us it is It is not good that the man should be alone, but he follows through and does not leave us alone. “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.” John 1:14 ESV. The word became flesh and dwelt among us. God created our world that is good, good and very good. There was perfect peace and perfect harmony in the world, until we came along. He created mankind in his own image, but we abandoned our call to be God’s own image bearers within his creation. Yet he does not abandon us to be alone in our broken-ness, he comes and joins us in it.
“”For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.”
John 3:16-17 ESV.
Do we believe that God’s creation, of which we are a part of, is good? God still does. He believes this so deeply that he sent his own Son, Jesus Christ, into that creation, to join us in our brokenness and reconcile us to himself. He did not come to condemn the world, God’s good, good, and very good creation, but to save it.
“And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden.” Genesis 3:8 ESV. Ever since the fall, we’ve been hiding our true selves. We’ve been isolating ourselves from the community we were created for. We isolate ourselves, both from God and each other, and our walls build ever higher around us. Fear grows, love withers, anger and resentment rage within.
The point is, don’t isolate yourselves. Despite our modern culture’s lies to the contrary, we can’t walk this life, Christian or otherwise, on our own. The very first thing the Bible tells us is not good is for man to be alone.
Stop hiding behind the bushes. Come out, forget that you are naked, get honest with yourself and others who love you, and find healing that can only come from the love and support of those around you.
One last thought – why do we isolate. I think it’s mostly because of fear. We fear what others might think or say about us. Maybe you fear what God might think or say about you. But, from one of our favorite passages in all of scripture, Paul tells us “No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:37-39 ESV. God is Love, never forget that. That is really the point Paul makes here. I think that one of the great fears we have in being open, being honest, with ourselves and others is that what we’ve done is just so bad, or that somehow we just aren’t worthy of God’s love or anyone else’s love. But Paul tells us here so many different things that can not separate us from the love of God. Not death. Not the powers that be. Nothing here and now or that can come in the future. Nor anything else in all creation.
Nothing in all creation can separate you from the love of God. Question – are you a created being? Yes, you are. Guess what? You do not have the power to separate yourself from the love of God. God has given us many powers and abilities, this is not one of them. There is nothing that you can do to separate yourself from the love of God in Christ Jesus. You can run, but you can’t hide. He will leave the ninety to come and find you. His love is a reckless love. Nothing you have done can separate you from that reckless love.
God loves you, and there’s nothing you can do about it.
But – you can isolate yourself and never know it. Why would you want to do that?
“Then the Lord God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.””
Genesis 2:18 ESV
“And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness.”
Genesis 1:4 ESV
“God called the dry land Earth, and the waters that were gathered together he called Seas. And God saw that it was good.”
Genesis 1:10 ESV
“The earth brought forth vegetation, plants yielding seed according to their own kinds, and trees bearing fruit in which is their seed, each according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.”
Genesis 1:12 ESV
“And God set them in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth, to rule over the day and over the night, and to separate the light from the darkness. And God saw that it was good.”
Genesis 1:17-18 ESV
“So God created the great sea creatures and every living creature that moves, with which the waters swarm, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.”
Genesis 1:21 ESV
“And God made the beasts of the earth according to their kinds and the livestock according to their kinds, and everything that creeps on the ground according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.”
Genesis 1:25 ESV
“And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.”
Genesis 1:31 ESV
“And the gold of that land is good; bdellium and onyx stone are there.”
Genesis 2:12 ESV