Most scientists tell us that it took billions of years to create the earth as we know it. Scripture says God did it in six days. I have a question for God. What took you so long?
Think about it. If God had really wanted to, he could have snapped his cosmic fingers and just made it all happen in a nanosecond. But he didn’t. Therefore I ask, “What took you so long?”
We get a big hint to the answer to this question right there in Genesis 1.
We read, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. And the earth was without form and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep.” We here get a picture of a universe in chaos. “Without form and void” is translated from two Hebrew words “tohu” and “bohu”, which can be figuratively translated as “helter skelter”.
“And the Spirit of God moved across the face of the waters.” Almost a brooding Spirit here, contemplating what needs to be done.
What follows is a day by day account of separating light from darkness, land from sea, bringing order out of chaos, and the bringing forth of life and beauty from death and destruction, finally crowned by the creation of a handsome young man and a beautiful young woman.
It took time to do this, but it didn’t need to take any time at all. Yet it did because God wanted it to.
A curious little phrase occurs over and over in this account, and it clues us in on God’s thinking. “God said, ‘Let there be light,’ and God saw the light, that it was good.” (Verse 3)
“And God called the dry land Earth and the gathering together of waters he called Seas, and God saw that it was good.” (Verse 10)
“… it was good.” (Verse 12) “… it was good.” (Verse 18, 21, 25) And finally, “… it was very good.” (Verse 31)
I get a picture here of a God who is intentionally taking his time and enjoying, nay, savoring, his work as a master artist would. “This is good!” “Man this is good.” “This is very good.”
I believe there is a lesson here for us. We live in a world oppressed by the tyranny of time. In Greek mythology the god Chronos was a grotesque figure who had a penchant for devouring his own children. We are like those children in Chronos’ maw. We have hard deadlines, instant communications, microwave ovens, fast foods, Facebook, e-mails, texting and instant potatoes. Empty contents of package, add water, and stir, and the world can know about it faster than you can say Twitter. And for all this, we never seem to have enough time.
And yet we have a picture of a God with the burden of having a universe to run taking his time and enjoying it, and then having the idea, after six days of work, of kicking back for a day in order to enjoy it some more.
An old Italian proverb says, “Slow down. I’m in a hurry.” Certainly wisdom is in there somewhere.