An Invitation to Return

The beauty about God is we are always learning about His nature and character. What we know about Him when we are 50 or 75 years old is completely different from when we were 10 or 25 years old. Did God change? No! But the lens in which we view Him has. It is much like Aslan’s response to a more mature Lucy when she finds him bigger than before in the movie Prince Caspian:

“Aslan,” said Lucy, “you’re bigger.” “That is because you are older, little one,” answered he. “Not because you are?” “I am not. But every year you grow, you will find me bigger.”

This is a beautiful picture of how we see God. The more we mature, the lens in which we view God becomes larger as well. The stories we find in the Bible beginning in Genesis to the story of Jesus all the way to the end of Revelation; it is always been about a journey, an unveiling of who God truly is. We have stories upon stories about people and groups of people who have their own set of beliefs and convictions with different cultures and traditions. These are the ones who wrote about their experiences and encounters. From their lens and how they saw the world, they started to write about God and who they thought He was.

This is where we find Moses. Standing on a mountaintop. Below him is the tribe of Israel that had just been delivered by God from Egypt through Moses. If you’re Moses and you have a whole nation as your follower, how would you introduce them to the God who helped you deliver them from the grips of the Egyptian Empire? God has been speaking with Moses about His plan. He wanted a holy nation, a royal priesthood, a group of people who will represent Him to other nations. But how can they represent God if they didn’t know who He was and let alone themselves? If you were Moses, where would you start? How would you even begin to talk about God? How would you tell the Israelites that God had a purpose for them?

The Israelites have been enslaved for nearly 400 years in the land of Egypt. Egypt was a place full of different gods. You have the sun god, the moon god, all kinds of animal gods. You name it. They had gods for everything. Idols and graven images were rampant at this time. Even the Pharaoh was seen as as a deity. He was a god himself and what he says goes. He was the one who defined what is good and what it is evil. This is where we find the nation of Israel at the end of Genesis.

Think about that for a moment. 400 hundred years. That’s a long time. The tribe of Israel was immersed in Egyptian culture with their polytheistic gods and goddesses and not only that they have become slaves. You have slave parents raising slave children and their children and their children after them. Your worth came from how much you met your quota for the day and if you didn’t you were whipped.

Now, if you were born in a culture where your identity was that of a slave, how would your perspective of the world look like? How would you look at yourself? How would you see your neighbor? Would you even know how to act like a human being? Would you even know how to honor one another? The Israelites only knew of slavery. Their value and worth was enchained to the amount bricks and mortar they could make. Slavery became their very identity. Redemption needed to take place. Redemption from how they view things to a whole new perspective.

Redemption from Egypt to a covenantal invitation with the God who made the universe.

The redemption of God is essentially an invitation to return because humanity have veered off course to how God originally intended them to live. It is an invitation to return to what God had in His heart from the beginning.

So Moses begins to write. Thus, we find the first book of the Bible: Genesis.