Where did We come From?

Developing a World View  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  1:02:57
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We are continuing our series on Developing a biblical Worldview. A well known atheist, Bertrand Russell once stated,
Unless you assume there is a God the question of life’s purpose is meaningless.
That’s about as true of a statement as has ever been said. Without God there is no purpose to life. If there is no God, then we are all accidents and nothing matters. There is no afterlife… nothing to give anything purpose, so there is no significance and nothing matters.
All over the world there are Christians who have stood for what they believe in and many to their detriment. Many Christians have been willing to die for their faith. However, I have never heard of, seen or read about an atheist who was willing take the consequences for what they believe. They want to believe there is not a God, but they want their life to be significant and you cannot have both. If there is no God, yur life doesn’t matter.
Albert Camu, a French Atheist philosopher said this,
The logical extension of atheism is despair.
Fortunately, only about 2% of the population of the entire world actually truly deny the existence of God. So we do not live in a culture of despair, we still live in a culture that values life… although that has been changing over the last few years.
Tonight we are going to look at the question

Who am I? And Where did I come From?

We will look at three things Jesus said about about who you are and where you came from. Then we will look at what that means in our lives.
Here are

Three Foundational Truths We Believe

1. God created everything

Right from the start, the bible says,
Genesis 1:1 NLT
1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
This tells us that God existed before anything else. You have to begin there. If you can’t, life has no meaning, but God existed before he created anything.
Then is says that God created the heavens and the earth. He spoke the universe into existence. He just opened his mouth and spoke the world into existence. It could have taken a million years or less than a second. The point is that God created the world. Peter siad this
2 Peter 3:8 NLT
8 But you must not forget this one thing, dear friends: A day is like a thousand years to the Lord, and a thousand years is like a day.
God is not constrained by time like we are. A second is like a thousand years.
Joke - "God is it true that to you a thousand years is a minute?" "That's true," God replied. "And is it true that to you $1,000,000 is like a penny?" "That's true," God said. "Well, you see I'm a poor man and I was wondering if you could give me a penny," asked the man. "Sure," said God, "in a minute."
Let me be clear. I do not believe in the theory of evolution. Species change, but there has never been a discovery that has not been disproven of a species becoming something else.
You can change the color or look of an orchid, but you will never see an orchid become a dog. Birds sometimes change colors with the season or their environment, but they never become people.
There is no scientific record to prove species change.
The Bible doesn’t spend too much time talking about how God created the World… just a few chapters in Genesis. It spends the rest of the pages talking about why God created the world. That’s what want to know.
Why did God create the world? For you and me
He did not create it to be empty. Look at this.
Isaiah 45:18 NLT
18 For the Lord is God, and he created the heavens and earth and put everything in place. He made the world to be lived in, not to be a place of empty chaos. “I am the Lord,” he says, “and there is no other.
“He did not create it to be empty, but formed it to be inhabited.Isaiah 45:18b (NIV)
God created the earth to be inhabited and sustain life. He did not create it to be a dead planet. He placed it just the right distance from the sun and put it on just thr right axis so that when it spins it would not get too hot or too cold. IOW, so it would sustain life.
Hebrews 2:10 NCV
10 God is the One who made all things, and all things are for his glory. He wanted to have many children share his glory, so he made the One who leads people to salvation perfect through suffering.
“God is the one who made all things, and all things are for his glory. He wanted to have many children share his glory...” Hebrews 2:10a (NCV)
God created the world including you and me so that he could enjoy it. It says here that he wanted to have many children to enjoy. He didn’t need us; he wanted us. We know that God is love and that he created you and me so he could love us. We are the crown of His creation.

2. God thought of us first, but made us last.

God thought about you and I, the human race first, but created everything else first, but for us.
Here is the order of creation. Light… water… sky or atmosphere… ocean and land… split the ocean and dry land… vegetation… sun, moon and stars.... water animals - fish.... birds… land animals… then last of all, man and woman.
But we are the reason for everything else. Look what Paul said,
Ephesians 1:4 M:BCL
4 Long before he laid down earth’s foundations, he had us in mind, had settled on us as the focus of his love, to be made whole and holy by his love.
“Long before he laid down earth's foundations, God had us in mind, and had settled on us as the focus of his love...” Ephesians 1:4 (MSG)
Now this is amazing. God said I am going to create a universe to support these people I am creating so I can love them. We are the reason for all of creation.
James 1:18 GNB
18 By his own will he brought us into being through the word of truth, so that we should have first place among all his creatures.
“God brought us into being through the word of truth, so that we should have first place among all his creatures.” James 1:18 (TEV)
You and I as human beings are unlike anything else God created. More later, but just know we are different.

3. God custom designed each of us

It’s really amazing what God did.
Psalm 139:13-16You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. 14 Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex!
Very few things are as complex as the human body.
Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it. 15 You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion,
IOW, in our mother’s womb. When you were first conceived, God was there. He saw you developing.
as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. 16 You saw me before I was born.
God custom built you because he has a plan and purpose for your life and He oversaw that creation.
Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed.”
You were created with a purpose. don’t ever let someone tell you that you were an accident. There are no accidental babies… there are accidental parents, but not babies. God planned you.
Psalm 139:13–16 NLT
13 You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. 14 Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it. 15 You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. 16 You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed.
In Romans 11:33-34
Romans 11:33–34 M:BCL
33 Have you ever come on anything quite like this extravagant generosity of God, this deep, deep wisdom? It’s way over our heads. We’ll never figure it out. 34 Is there anyone around who can explain God? Anyone smart enough to tell him what to do?
The answer is no. No one can explain God. If you could, you would have to be God and we are not. We don’t have the brain capacity to understand God.
So what should our response be? One is we ought to thank him for His grace and love. That’s what Paul said in 2 CO 9:15
2 Corinthians 9:15 NLT
15 Thank God for this gift too wonderful for words!
God created everything, but he made you and me last.

Here is what it means!

There are 5 implications for you and for me.

1. Your life is special and is to be different

You were created to be like Jesus… to be set apart for God. People are completely different for all other creation.
Here are three reasons why we are different.
a. God designed you in His image.
Genesis 1:27 NLT
27 So God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.
That makes you different than all animals. Cows, Dogs and especially cats were not designed in the image of God. You were. Here are a few differences.
You have free moral choice. You get to choose between right and wrong. You have a conscious… animals don’t. You can talk to God, animals can’t. You can make decisions and create things like tools, cars, iPhones, etc. Animals cannot.
You are made in the image of God, and that makes you different that all of creation.
Look at Psalms 8:5
Psalm 8:5 CEV
5 You made us a little lower than you yourself, and you have crowned us with glory and honor.
God gives us a special place in the world because we are made in His image.
b. God planned your life before you were born.
Look at Jeremiah...
Jeremiah 1:5 GW
5 “Before I formed you in the womb,  I knew you.  Before you were born,  I set you apart for my holy purpose.  I appointed you to be a prophet to the nations.” 
This shows that God has a purpose for your life before you were every conceived. I wonder what we are missing because of all the abortions we have committed in our nation.
God knew you before you were conceived and had a special purpose for you.
examples - John the Baptist - He was filled with God’s spirit while he was in his mother’s womb.
Isaiah siad in Isa 49:1
Isaiah 49:1 NLT
1 Listen to me, all you in distant lands! Pay attention, you who are far away! The Lord called me before my birth; from within the womb he called me by name.
God knew Isaiah’s name before his parents knew it. Why? because he had a special purpose for him. The same is true for you.
Rebekah - “The sons in your womb [and by the way, He didn’t say fetuses] shall become two rival nations. One will be stronger than the other. The older shall be the servant of the younger.”
God already knew what was going to happen to these two boys. He already knew. Why? Because He had a plan for their life.
This is why I am against abortion. It short circuits God’s plan. God thought of you before your parents ever did and if they had aborted you, then you would not have fulfilled the purpose God conceived you for. God put you and every other person who has ever been conceived here for a reason.
c. God made you for his pleasure.
Revelation 4:11 NLT
11 “You are worthy, O Lord our God, to receive glory and honor and power. For you created all things, and they exist because you created what you pleased.”
“You God created everything, and it is for your pleasure that they exist and were created!" Revelation 4:11b (NLT)
Everything you see in our world… our universe was made for God’s enjoyment. Grand Canyon… Stars… trees… You and me. We were all made for God’s enjoyment.
When you are doing good, God goes that’s my boy… that’s my girl. He said that to Satan about Job… Have you seen my servant Job? He is watching us, helping us and cheering us on. God gets pleasure out of watching us and being around us.
Because God made you in his image, you are not an accident.

2. Your life has significance

All of us want our lives to mean something. We want to feel valuable and significant. That you mattered while you were here.
What gives you dignity? wealth? fame? sex? physical beauty? No. Significance is much more than all of those and if you try to find significance in those, you will be disappointed.
You can have it all by the world’s standards, and still be miserable. You were made for more.
a. Real significance comes from a relationship with Jesus.
When you realize that God saw you as valuable enough to allow Jesus to die for you, it will change you.
1 Peter 1:18–20 NLT
18 For you know that God paid a ransom to save you from the empty life you inherited from your ancestors. And it was not paid with mere gold or silver, which lose their value. 19 It was the precious blood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God. 20 God chose him as your ransom long before the world began, but now in these last days he has been revealed for your sake.
If you ever wonder how important you are? how significant you are? Look at the cross. Jesus shows you how important you are because he paid the price for YOUR sins.
You can always tell how much something is worth by how much someone is willing to pay for it. We have some antiques someone donated that are supposed to be worth a lot… but the reality is that they are only worth what someone will pay for them.
Your value is determined by the fact that God was willing to pay for your sin with the life of His own son. This should kill any thoughts of low self esteem.
That’s why the Bible says in 1 Peter 2:17
1 Peter 2:17 M:BCL
17 Treat everyone you meet with dignity. Love your spiritual family. Revere God. Respect the government.
He says that because everyone you will ever meet was created by God and is loved by God. God wants them to be saved and to follow him. It doesn’t matter if they believe it or not, we are to treat them with dignity because Jesus died for them.
b. Real significance comes to us because the Holy Spirit lives in us.
When you invite Jesus into your life, he comes in, but he comes in to your life as the Holy Spirit.
1 Corinthians 6:19 LBP
19 Haven’t you yet learned that your body is the home of the Holy Spirit God gave you, and that he lives within you? Your own body does not belong to you.
Your body is the home to the Holy Spirit and it belongs to the Lord. He loaned it to you for 80 to 100 years or so. But one day you will give this one back to him for a heavenly body that doesn’t age. Listen, God is not going to put his spirit in a can of junk.
c. Jesus gives you a new identity
When you trust Jesus as your Savior, he transforms you by making you a new person.
2 Corinthians 5:17 LBP
17 When someone becomes a Christian, he becomes a brand new person inside. He is not the same anymore. A new life has begun!
When you accept Jesus, he takes everything you have ever done wrong and erases it. He forgives it and gets rid of it.
He gives you a new life that’s different. It’s not a new leaf, but it’s a new life.
We have all done things that we wish we could erase in our lives… things we wish we could have a do-over with. We feel that way because when we sin it hurts God and us.
But Jesus is in the restoration business. He takes our sin, and gives us his righteousness.
woman caught in adultery - Jesus wrote in the dirt… who ever hasn’t sinned cast the first stone… everyone left… What happened to your accusers? Your sins are forgiven, go and sin no more.
Jacob to Israel
Saul to Paul
Simon to Peter
It doesn’t matter what you have done, how long you have done it and how many times you tried to stop. Jesus forgives sin when we come to him and makes us new. He gives you a brand new identity.

3. Your days have destiny

God had a purpose for you before you were born.
Psalm 139:16 NCV
16 you saw my body as it was formed. All the days planned for me were written in your book before I was one day old.
Not to be spooky, but God knows everything that has happened in your life and will happen in your life before any of it happened. Now He gave you the ability to choose because he created you in His image, but he already knows what your choices are. Nothing surprises God.
Our lives here are basically the warmup laps before the race. We are here for 80 to 100 years and then we spend eternity in either heaven or hell.
This life is preparation for eternity. God put you here for a reason. Look at what Paul said,
Ephesians 2:10 NLT
10 For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.
Before you were born, God decided how he would wire you… what your predispositions would be, how you would look… He gave you certain ambitions, certain desires, certain drives and hobbies that you love. Before you were born he knew everything about you. Check this out… we are all unique.
God also shaped you to fulfill a role in this life. To make a difference.
He also made you unique and when he gives you a purpose or an assignment, he is not comparing you to other people. He compares you to your potential. And he knows your potential. He knows your gifts, talents, desires, strengths, weaknesses, health, sight, hearing better than anyone. He is watching to see what you do with what he gave you.
God is interested in every area of your life. He knows how may hairs you have on your head… he even knows when one falls out. God is bigger than anything we can imagine but he is interested in everything about you.
We can miss God’s purpose for our lives, but we do that by our own choice. Maybe you choose making money… popularity… fame… relationships... over a relationship with Jesus. People do this all the time.
All you have to do is to turn back from that and turn to God and you can get back on track with what God wants in your life. When you ask him to use you for his purposes, he will.

4. Your problems produce maturity

Even the difficulties of life have a purpose. There is a meaning in that mess you are in right now. You might not see the purpose until you are out of the mess and looking back, but there is purpose in the mess.
God’s purpose for your life is bigger than your problems. My dad could make just about anything. He would take what looked like Junk and turn it into a trailer… a wreck of a car and restore it to new.... God is better than my dad. He takes all the bad stuff along with the good stuff in our lives and uses it for our good and to further His purposes in the world.
Joseph - sold into slavery… prospers… falsely accused … everything was going wrong… maybe you have felt that way too … he goes to prison… interprets dreams and ends up #2.
Brothers see him and ask for food. Joseph reveals himself to the brothers… they think they are about to die, but he tells them this in Gen 50:20
Genesis 50:20 NLT
20 You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people.
God put Joseph in the right spot to save the nation of Israel. Everything has a purpose. God is bigger than your problems and he will bring you through them to fulfill his purposes in your life.
Maybe people have hurt you in various ways. Just say, God here are the pieces of my life. Take them and use them. He will put the pieces back together.
I have said this before, but God is more interested in your character than your comfort. How does God build character?
1. He grows your character through truth. The more you know the truth, the more you are free.
2. He builds character through time. It takes time to grow spiritually.
3. He builds your character through testing. God will test your integrity. Do you keep your promises? Do you give generously? Are you humble? he will test everything.
4. Then he uses trouble to help you build character. People are like a teabag. You don’t know what’s in it until you drop it into hot water.
Look at what Paul said,
Romans 8:28 NLT
28 And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.
Not everything is good. There is a lot of evil in this world and a lot of bad stuff happens. But all that bad works for the good of those who love God. It’s not a promise for everyone, it’s a promise for those who love God.
We have to trust God who can see further down the road than we can. Too often we begin to think that we are God, but we are not but it causes us stress. Psalm 100:3 says…
Psalm 100:3 NLT
3 Acknowledge that the Lord is God! He made us, and we are his. We are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
There is a lot of bad in the world, but it works for the good of those who love God.

5. My future is forever

Life is not over when we leave this earth. Because there is a God and he created you in his image, you are an eternal being and will live forever somewhere… heaven or hell. For the believer, David said it like this…
Psalm 23:6 NLT
6 Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me all the days of my life, and I will live in the house of the Lord forever.
Forever is a long time. God wants you to be part of his forever family. That’s why you were created. That’s why he created the universe… so that he would have a forever family.
Ephesians 1:10 LBP
10 and this was his purpose: that when the time is ripe he will gather us all together from wherever we are—in heaven or on earth—to be with him in Christ forever.
One day he will gather his family up together.... those who have already made it to heaven and those left on earth to be with him forever.
He will not force you to be part of his family. You have to make a choice. But that choice will be the best choice you ever make.
Right now the Saints are preparing for opening day… and ultimately the big even we call the Superbowl.
Right now, God is preparing for a big even too. All of creation is preparing for the same event. It’s the time when history ends and eternity begins. The Second Coming of Jesus.
Romans 8:19 NLT
19 For all creation is waiting eagerly for that future day when God will reveal who his children really are.
All of creation is looking for that day. So let me ask you an important question. Will your name be on that list? It’s your choice. God has extended an invitation. Look at what he says in John 1:12
John 1:12 NCV
12 But to all who did accept him and believe in him he gave the right to become children of God.
It’s your choice. You can live a meaningless life without God in your life, or you can live a life with purpose… with significance… It’s your choice.
Prayer time
Before you were born, God knew you would be here tonight. He wants to forgive you and begin a new life with you, but you have to choose.
Pray this prayer to yourself…
Dear God, thank You for creating the universe. Thank You for creating this world. Thank You for thinking of me before You created it all. I'm amazed that You would love me that much. Thank You for wanting me to be a part of Your family forever. Jesus Christ, I thank You for dying for me. I don’t understand it all but I want to trust in You.
I invite You to fill my life with Your life and Your Spirit. I ask You to make me a part of Your family. Thank You for making me for a purpose.
Please forgive all the things I’ve done wrong. Please restore my significance. Give me a new identity. Secure my destiny for eternity. Help me to treat everybody with dignity and to share this good news with those who don’t know it yet. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen
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