In elementary and high school science courses, many of us learned all about natural and biological cycles. Take this simplified explanation of the water cycle for example: water evaporates when heated by the sun, condenses in the sky to form clouds, and precipitates in the form of rain, snow, or hail. Here's another example—the respiration cycle. The diaphragm contracts, allowing the lungs to expand and take in oxygen. The lungs exchange the fresh oxygen for carbon dioxide, and as the diaphragm expands, the lungs expel the carbon dioxide in preparation for another breath of oxygen. There are so many other natural and biological cycles—whether simple or complex—that we learned about in school. But how did these cycles come to be? Of course, we Christians understand that these cycles are the handiwork of our awesome Creator God. We believe that God created all things—including the mechanisms that sustain life—during the creation week as narrated in Genesis 1. The oxygen cycle at work when Adam and Eve took their first breaths is the same cycle that we depend on for life today. The water cycle seems to have changed into its current form after the Flood by God’s decree. But these natural processes are now thousands of years removed from God’s work during creation week and His intervention in the Flood. What keeps them operating? If we are not careful in our thinking about the marvels of nature that unfold all around us we may unwittingly fall for false teachings and not ascribe the glory and honor due our God.
One of the false ideas we may fall for is deism. Deism is the belief that there is a God, but that He is primarily known through scientific discovery, not His spoken Word preserved for us through the Scriptures. In other words, deists are among those who “changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen” (Rom. 1:25). Deists believe that religious thought should be subject to the authority of human reasoning instead of divine revelation. They exalt natural law above nature’s Creator. How then are Bible-believing, God-fearing Christians in danger of falling for some teachings of deism?
To answer that question, let’s take a look at what Scripture reveals about those natural processes I referenced at the very beginning of this article. Consider how Job describes weather.
Job 37:5-6 “God thundereth marvelously with his voice; great things doeth he, which we cannot comprehend. For he saith to the snow, Be thou on the earth; likewise to the small rain, and to the great rain of his strength.”
Job exalts the power of God’s spoken word, proclaiming that God commands the snow and rain to fall to the earth. Similarly, hear what Isaiah has to say about the breath of every man.
Isaiah 42:5 “Thus saith God the LORD, he that created the heavens, and stretched them out; he that spread forth the earth, and that which cometh out of it; he that giveth breath unto the people upon it, and spirit to them that walk therein.”
God gives breath to every man on the earth. By His breath we live; apart from His breath, we die. Notice that in both of these passages, the verbs are in the present tense. The precipitation that falls—God sends moment by moment. The breath we breathe—God gives each lungful as we need it. The same Voice and Breath that brought everything we see into existence is the same voice and breath that gives life to all creatures each day. God did not just create the water cycle, respiration cycle, or the seasons to keep cycling without His direct involvement. He did not just create nature and turn it loose as the deists would have us believe. The Scriptures teach that God spoke at Creation and continues to speak. So maybe those natural cycles we learned about in school are much more personal than we often think, not merely the by-product of nature taking its course but the direct hand of an orderly God in each moment.
The next time we observe the awesome thunder and lightning of a storm, we should remember that God “maketh lightnings for the rain” and “bringeth the wind out of his treasuries” (Psalm 135:7). The next time we are conscious of our steady breathing, we should thank Him for allowing us to draw air once again. As the season changes from fall to winter, we should thank the Lord for sustaining the earth’s annual revolution around the sun. After all, “for of him, and through him, and to him, are all things, to whom be glory for ever. Amen” (Romans 11:36). May we respond to our God’s sustaining strength by giving Him all praise, glory, thanks, and honor for his great power and daily care.
The above article was written by Andrea Kyser. She is a wife, mother, and member of NorthStone Baptist Church in Pensacola, FL. To offer her your feedback, comment below or email us at email@example.com.
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