Holy Evolution


Holy Evolution

Jeremiah 49:7-11

Judgment on Edom

Concerning Edom.

Thus says the Lord of hosts:

Is there no longer wisdom in Teman?

Has counsel perished from the prudent?

Has their wisdom vanished?

Flee, turn back, get down low,

inhabitants of Dedan!

For I will bring the calamity of Esau upon him,

the time when I punish him.

If grape-gatherers came to you,

would they not leave gleanings?

If thieves came by night,

even they would pillage only what they wanted.

But as for me, I have stripped Esau bare,

I have uncovered his hiding places,

and he is not able to conceal himself.

His offspring are destroyed, his kinsfolk

and his neighbors; and he is no more.

Leave your orphans, I will keep them alive;

and let your widows trust in me.

Ephesians 4:17-5:2

The Old Life and the New

Now this I affirm and insist on in the Lord: you must no longer live as the Gentiles live, in the futility of their minds. They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of their ignorance and hardness of heart. They have lost all sensitivity and have abandoned themselves to licentiousness, greedy to practice every kind of impurity. That is not the way you learned Christ! For surely you have heard about him and were taught in him, as truth is in Jesus. You were taught to put away your former way of life, your old self, corrupt and deluded by its lusts, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to clothe yourselves with the new self, created according to the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.

Rules for the New Life

So then, putting away falsehood, let all of us speak the truth to our neighbors, for we are members of one another. Be angry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and do not make room for the devil. Thieves must give up stealing; rather let them labor and work honestly with their own hands, so as to have something to share with the needy. Let no evil talk come out of your mouths, but only what is useful for building up, as there is need, so that your words may give grace to those who hear. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with which you were marked with a seal for the day of redemption. Put away from you all bitterness and wrath and anger and wrangling and slander, together with all malice, and be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ has forgiven you. 5 Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children, and live in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.

If the word “revolutionI” implies a turning back than I suppose the term “evolution” must, in its pre-Darwinian root mean a turning forward. Most of us are against both revolution and evolution because it implies a change of natural state for us into something we have not yet seen. Even if we want to have a revolution and return to a time 50 or 100 years ago, we never truly go back, we just change into something similar, but different.

It happens in politics and it happens in our own lives as well. We grow and change and it makes us uncomfortable not knowing what tomorrow will bring. The death of Fidel Castro is a good example of this. The people of Cuba have been split as to whether to see this as a moment of new freedom or a reason to fear the future, for while Castro brought fear into many who did not support his policies, he also helped protect Cuba from being taken over by the drug lords that threaten and hold much political power throughout much of Central America. Change is not necessarily good or bad… it is just change, and we may encounter a bad surprise if we take on the attitude that it cannot get any worse than it already is.

Darwin’s evolution theory/concept/however you define it, is based upon the idea that the strong1 survive and the weak die. However, the definitions of strong and weak are rather fluid and undergo a kind of evolution themselves. What was considered strength 3000 years ago – muscles, child-bearing hips, an ability to go long periods of time without food or water, do not get you as far today. Communication skills may not have been key back in the ancient world, but they certainly are a strength today. It’s more than brains as well. The kinds of things that get you ahead today are not necessarily math and science in the classical sense. In our market-saturated economy, people skills and behavioral analysis have taken precedence over chemistry and geometry. What was once considered weakness is now considered strength… and still we continue to change.

God has another take. He brings justice down upon the strong – particularly the strong who lord it over others instead of caring for them. Then He invites the weakest of the weak to come join Him and be honored. That is Who God is throughout all of scripture, and He calls us to take on that same character ourselves. We are asked to turn over our strengths and serve in weakness, trusting in Him instead of ourselves. It is a holy evolution, that works contrary to what we all, creationists and evolutionists alike, consider to be the basic law of nature. We think if we want to survive and thrive, we have to be strong. God shows us that if we want to live and live abundantly in His grace, we have to be weak instead. Are you weak enough to live in the grace and justice of God?

What do you consider your greatest strengths to be?

What weaknesses do you struggle with?

How is God redeeming all of these?

  1. To be fair, Darwin’s claim was survival of the fittest not necessarily the strongest, but the concept remains the same.

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