Have you ever wondered what the Trinity—Father, Son and Spirit—were doing in eternity past? Before the galaxies, before the earthworms, before the giraffes, what was the triune God doing? C. S. Lewis would say, “In Christianity, God is not a static thing—not even a person—but a dynamic, pulsating activity, a life, almost a kind of drama. Almost, if you will not think me irreverent, a kind of dance.” In other words, God—the three persons—danced around each other in self-donating, loving relationships. God lacked nothing. Within the Trinity was perfect love, goodness, relationship, and joy. So, why did God make us?
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
Love has a tendency to give. Boy meets girl, they start a relationship. That relationship begets a marriage.
Families grow and so on. The overflow of the triune’s love gives creation. And, at the culmination of all of creation, sitting at the top above the moon and sun, the good Niagara Falls, the good stegosaurus, was the best of all of God’s creation: humanity. Out of the goodness of the triune relationship, God made humans in his image.
He created male and female to have dominion and to rule over all of creation. We had perfect fellowship with God, and we enjoyed the figs from the trees, patting the lion on the head, and the coolness of the river on our bare feet as we walked through Eden. We also enjoyed each other. Adam and Eve, our first parents, lived without anxiety, despair, jealousy, hatred, and fear. God made the world and everything in it, and it was good.
gospel starts here
When we think about the gospel, we should train our minds to go back to the very beginning. The gospel begins with God, then humanity, then sin. We tend to bypass the first two on a race to get to the bad news. Yet, the gospel is good news. We celebrate that God created out of love, not need. We celebrate that God created out of goodness, not loneliness. We celebrate that God created out of joy, not boredom. And, we celebrate that we bear God’s image. Humanity—though separate from God, since he is creator and we are creation—still maintains the ability to do God-like things: create, love, divest of power, dance, commune with others, and so forth. Humans, in a partnership with God, rule, reign, and seek the good of the world around us. In the fabric of our humanity, God infused us with the ability to do beautiful, redemptive, and meaningful things.
We celebrate that God created out of love, not need. We celebrate that God created out of goodness, not loneliness. We celebrate that God created out of joy, not boredom. And, we celebrate that we bear God’s image.
The next time you think about the gospel or share it with someone, put on your dancing shoes and consider the Trinity orbiting in self-donating loving relationship. The gospel starts with God, and so should we.
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When you consider that God made you from an overflow of love and goodness and made you to be like him, how does this inform your self-image? How do you see yourself imaging God in your life?
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