“The Power to Choose…”

This morning as Nick and I were walking, we talked about heaven and about the Garden of Eden. We were talking specifically about work and toil, and the ability to find joy in our work and the toil and unhappiness that some people find in their jobs.

I shared with Nick that I feel as though the Garden of Eden is a glimpse of heaven. There is work, but it is peaceful, fulfilling and enjoyable. I can honestly say this is how I define the work I do here on earth. (I realize that not everyone can say that, and I am thankful that I am so blessed.)

After our walk, we looked again together at the creation story of Adam and Eve and the time they had with God in the Garden. After reading it, we spent some time discussing God’s design. It almost seems as though God created something, and then set it up for failure.

Is it possible that was what He was doing? Setting us up to fail? I don’t think so. Take a minute to read the story of Adam and Eve, their creation and the fall, in Genesis, chapters 2 and 3. As I read it, I was especially drawn to chapter 3, verse 22. It says, “And the Lord God said, ‘The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil…'”

I believe that God is Sovereign and everything that happens goes through His hands. So God knew about the temptation of the serpent before the serpent ever got to Eve and then to Adam. God knew that through the actions of this first sin, His creation would know the difference between good and evil and that this knowledge makes us even more like Him.

How wonderful it is that God loves us so much that He allowed us to have this knowledge. He does not try to manipulate us, to control us, or keep us uniformed. We have the power to choose between good and evil. That’s a lot of power.

There is a great line from the movie, “The Amazing Spider-man.” Peter Parker’s Uncle Ben tells him, “With great power comes great responsibility.”

God did not set us up to fail. In fact, by sending His Son, Jesus, to die on the cross for us, He guaranteed us success! Yay God!

But that does not free us from responsibility. God desperately wants us to choose good over evil — every time! And if everyone did that…if everyone chose good over evil…wouldn’t we have heaven on earth?

1 Peter 2:12 says, “Live such good lives  among the pagans that, though they may accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.”

Let’s do our best to choose good over evil and to make this earth as heavenly as possible.

Pastor Stef

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