Monday, November 03, 2008

From the Garden to the City - Part 1.

Then the Lord God took man and put him into the garden of Eden to cultivate it and keep it. Genesis 1:15

This week, my blog journey will be in the thought of movement from a garden to a city. Scripture unfolds the story of God and His people in a garden, and there we see man is charged to cultivate and keep it. Sin invades. The garden is off limits. Man wanders. God still reigns. Man builds towers and cities. God still reigns. God's people experience wilderness until they can appreciate the Promised Land. God still reigns. Even in Canaan, the people are prone to wander. God still reigns. Redemption once and for all is born and dies. God still reigns. Eternal Life rises from death. God still reigns. The message of the Redeemer goes out to the countryside and cityscapes. The course of history changes forever because of Jesus. Eternity is life forever in the holy city (check out Revelation 21). 

Still, all of the cities on earth, great and small, have a limited shelf-life. This generation is in the midst of the greatest movement towards urbanization in the history of the world. Millions are migrating towards the urban city-cores around the earth. Less gardens and more cities. Less cultivating and less keeping. And yes, there are great cities all over earth where very few people believe that Redemption is in Jesus. 

Yet, nothing will stand in the way of wrath and justice. No amount of neon, steel and concrete can withstand God's righteous and holy anger towards the sin of man. So, all the great cities that are and will be, face eternity. Either the Redeemer pays or eternity will be hellish beyond description...I'm thankful to have friends and family that are shaken by the reality that BILLIONS of souls are screaming towards a Christ-less eternity. Big cities. Small cities. Everything in between. Lives are all around us, but do they know Life? Will I share Life in the context of love? Will you? Am I? Are you?  

It's His word of power that spins the earth, sustains our breath, and maintains control... and at some point after unspeakable chaos and destruction, we are promised the story resumes for those who believe, in a New City, only this time there is no sun or moon, but the glory of God lights the streets. These streets are the walkways of the New City. They line the neighborhoods where the people of God from every tribe, tongue, and nation will celebrate Jesus. Forever. What an amazing City this will be. The convergence of global cultures - centered around the King of All Kings - Jesus.

And the city, has no need of the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of the Lord has illumined it, and its lamp is the Lamb... Revelation 21:23

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