How in the world did the world get to be such a mess?
If the Bible stories about God creating this perfect world inhabited by morally upright humans is true, what happened?
Well, the Bible’s story about the beginning of all things doesn’t end at Genesis 2. There’s another chapter that explains how we got into this mess.
And, fortunately, the whole story doesn’t end until we get to, well, the end. Revelation 20-22. That’s where we find out that one day it will all be put back together.
But let’s go back to the business about how things got messed up. That’s recorded for us in Genesis 3.
Before we jump into the dreadful story of how we got into this mess, let’s review.
This is the sixth in a series of articles written to help discouraged, defeated pastors get back on track. The idea behind this series of articles is to give pastors a framework for understanding, preaching and teaching the church what God is doing in the world. The purpose is to help a local church and the people in it understand how their private and corporate lives participate in God’s work.
Communicating God’s mission and the church’s vision is vital to any attempt to reverse decades of decline. The ability to understand and convey the mission and vision is one of the hallmark distinctions between those who revive dying churches and those who don’t. The first article in this series put it this way.
Because a firm grasp on mission and a clear sense of vision are hallmark distinctions between those who lead vigorous churches and those who don’t.
New research shows that there is a significant and measurable difference in “communicating the church’s vision with clarity and passion” between pastors. Those who pound the vision lead missionally effective churches. Those who don’t, don’t.
In our work as intentional interim pastors, trainers and coaches, my colleagues and I have seen the trouble that arises when pastors don’t pay continual attention to the mission and when they fail keep the congregation mindful of the vision.
The first five articles in this series show how the opening chapters of Genesis and the closing chapters of Revelation for a grand inclusio. The creation ordinances established in Genesis 1 and 2 are restored the consummation in Revelation 21 and 22.
Okay, with that behind us, let’s dive into the dreadful story about how this world go so messed up in the first place.
The Lord warns against disobedience