magic

magic

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Psalm 19:1-6
The heavens proclaim the glory of God. The skies display His craftsmanship (v.1).

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• Genesis 1:1
• John 1:1-5
• 1 John 1:1-4

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Why is it wise to define the terms in any serious discussion? What can you learn from those who are searching?

We were engaged in a refreshingly serious conversation about the origin of things, deep stuff you won’t get to discuss with every teenager. (Him, not me. I’m, uh . . . older.) Shy, brilliant (again, him), he was searching for BIG answers to BIG questions. “I see two basic options,” he said thoughtfully. “Either it all started by random chance, or it was magic.”
“I wouldn’t use the word magic,” I hastily said.

He seemed perplexed. “Well, what would you call it? There’s nothing, and then”—he waved his hands skyward—“there’s everything!”

I worried about the connotations inherent in that dangerous word magic. Didn’t that evoke images of wizards and spells, of sleight of hand and illusion? Magic isn’t synonymous with miraculous. But my friend came from a background where God and worship were not values. He saw the cosmos with fresh eyes and used the word magic innocently, even worshipfully.

“The heavens proclaim the glory of God,” wrote the poet David. “The skies display His craftsmanship” (Psalm 19:1). Those who look at nature through eyes of faith will be filled with a sense of awe that compels the worship of the One who created it all from nothing. The onslaught of evidence is overwhelming, as David noted: “Day after day they continue to speak; night after night they make Him known” (v.2).

And we can turn inward as well. Each of our cells contains information in the form of DNA. Nature can produce patterns, but coded information can come only from a higher intelligence.

The message from science, from my searching friend, and from the Bible is clear. Look up! Look around! Then worship the One who made you and who fills you with wonder. Creation declares the majesty—the magic!—of our Creator, “without a  . . . word” (v.3).

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4 Responses to “magic”

  1. jamiesreid says:

    Tim thank you for this beautiful message. The points that you raise about defining the terms in our discussion is very important – especially when we discuss such profound matters as creation and the gospel. We often take for granted what others mean. Your discussion with this youth is very inspiring. Yes the youth are hungry for wisdom, understanding and a relationship with the creator!

    Rev 4:11 – Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.

  2. Tim–your conversation reminds me of C.S. Lewis’ depiction of creation in The Magician’s Nephew. Even the brilliance of his writing cannot capture the wonder of how nothing became the visible (Heb 11:3). Thanks for the reminder that the same One who spoke creation into order can speak order in my life.

  3. evelyn says:

    Tim, your conversation with this youth reminds me that people may not know God but they acknowledge the wonder of his creation. As Paul wrote in Romans 1:20

    For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.

    We are God’s messengers to introduce and point the way to God and salvation.

    Romans 10:14
    How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?

  4. tony_maina says:

    Tim, your article reminds me how sometimes people wrestle with questions about God and His reality in our world today over what seems to be a lack of ‘evidence’. We are salt and light to our world, sharing our experiences and joy about God who loved us first even when we had doubts about Him. Thanks for sharing your experience.

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