“For all creation is waiting eagerly for that future day when God will reveal who his children really are.”
Romans 8:19 NLT
Paul makes another bold statement in his letter to the Roman church, a statement that would have seemed new and controversial to his readers. He follows his warning about suffering with a reference to “all creation”. Now that isn’t just the human content of God’s masterwork for Planet Earth. It includes the word “all”. So we look around at the created plants and animals that populate our world. And Paul gives them a personality by saying that they are waiting to see who God’s children “really are”.
How can that be? Is that daffodil over there thinking to itself that it wishes God will bring a revelation to the world about His children? Once again, we look at the natural world around us through our limited physical vision, and with the scientific knowledge that assumes vegetation and non-human animals have no soul and no awareness, of what things should really be like. Of course, no matter how hard they try, our scientists can find no evidence of a spirit or soul within a person or any other created plant or animal. They may find evidence of spiritual activity through someone’s behaviour, but a spirit or soul cannot be dissected on a laboratory bench somewhere.
We pilgrims have to take Paul’s statement at face value. When we ponder over his words, there is no reason why we should dispute them, just because we have no evidence to the contrary. In God’s Heavenly Kingdom things will be very different to our experiences today. In Isaiah 55:12, the prophet wrote, “You will live in joy and peace. The mountains and hills will burst into song, and the trees of the field will clap their hands”. In his prophetic vision, he saw even inanimate objects singing, and trees with hands. In Psalm 148:7, the Psalmist commanded the sea animals to praise God. We read, “Praise the Lord from the earth, you creatures of the ocean depths”. He goes on to refer to, “mountains and all hills, fruit trees and all cedars, wild animals and all livestock, small scurrying animals and birds” (Psalm 148:9-10). We can’t reduce God’s creation to the level of our limited understanding.
Perhaps these scriptures will give us a different insight into God’s creation. After all, perhaps we should treat that weed that has popped up in our flower bed with a bit more respect.
Dear God. Your creation is wonderful. please open our eyes to see what You have made through Your eyes and not our own. Amen.