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FIRST POSTED ON 1 DECEMBER 2018.


Shalom Aleichem and welcome to my Shabbat blog!

In the next three sessions, we will look at the Second Day of Creation, beginning here with the flood of judgment.

If the First Day of Creation is a picture of how we are in darkness, being separated from the light of the glory of God because of our sin, then the Second Day reveals firstly how we stand under judgment by a holy and righteous God. Sin demands a price, which must be paid, and this price is death. We see this fulfilled in the Great Flood, the first worldwide judgment, which we can read about in Genesis 6-8.

In order to better understand how this event could happen, remember in Gen 1:2, we were told how the world was formless, empty and dark in the beginning, and that the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. The Bible tells us that the world was initially covered in water, for it was only on the Second Day that part of this water was separated out and lifted up into the atmosphere, and the Third Day that dry ground first appeared when the remaining waters were gathered, probably in the deepest parts of the earth. The flood came about when God released all these waters stored above the sky and underneath the earth back onto the world. For those of you who doubt whether the flood really happened, there are over 270 accounts of this global catastrophe from people groups and cultures all over the world.

It is sobering to note that 1656 years passed from the time of Adam until the Flood. During this time, only 8 (Noah’s family) survived out of the possible 3-7 billion people that lived then. Noah’s father Lamech was 56 when Adam died at age 930, meaning that most of mankind would have heard first-hand from Adam about God, yet they still turned to evil. Imagine how heart-wrenching it was for Adam but even more so for God! You would also recall that following the Fall, God promised Adam and Eve in Gen 3:15 an offspring who would crush Satan’s head and so redeem mankind. They must have harboured this hope when Cain - literally the first “son of man” - was born. But instead of crushing Satan, Cain murdered his own brother, Abel. We are just so utterly sinful, unable to rescue ourselves. Only God Himself - when He came to us as Jesus the True “Son of Man” - is able to accomplish this - to crush Satan and cover the nakedness and shame of our sins.

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FIRST POSTED ON 15 NOVEMBER 2018.


Shalom Aleichem and welcome to my Shabbat blog!

As we conclude our discussion on the First Day of Creation, let us reflect on the following two questions:

First, Who am I? Because of the Fall of Adam, we are born into sin and darkness, doomed to a life that is separated from God and that will eventually end in physical and eternal or spiritual death. We are formless and empty, just as how Creation was at the very beginning. Here, it is interesting that the Jews start their day at sunset, unlike most of us whose day begins at sunrise. We could almost say that it is God’s way of daily reminding them and us about how we start in sin and darkness, just as our day starts at sunset. However, all is not gloom and doom. The good news is that although we may have started in sin and darkness, it doesn't mean that this defines our end point and true identity. In Christ, God has called us out of darkness into His wonderful light, the same way He called light out of darkness. He, who made light shine out of darkness, made His light shine into our hearts through knowing Christ. And just as He declares light to be good, God declares us good - because we are His children and bear His image.

Next, Where are you? Do we find ourselves in a pit, or even a place where we feel there is no return? If we do, whose voice do we hear? Is it the voice of accusation, shame, guilt and despair? That it is too late and God would never take us back? Or do we hear His voice of truth, tenderly calling for us, seeking us as a shepherd looks for his one lost sheep, a father his lost son? Would God ask where we are if He was not looking for us? Or are we in our comfort zone, thinking that all is well? We may think that we are in a safe place, since our sins are “lesser” than many others around us. God knows where we are, but do we know ourselves? Are we where we ought to be, in the Father's house and in His Son's embrace? Like the prodigal younger son in Jesus’ parable of the two sons, we need to come to the realization and acceptance of where we are (and are not) before we can repent and turn back to where we ought to be - with God. And God will receive us “Just as I am”, wherever we may be coming back from. Otherwise, we will always remain restless wanderers.

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FIRST POSTED ON 1 NOVEMBER 2018.


Shalom Aleichem and welcome to my Shabbat blog!

In this and the next session, we shall look at the First Day of Creation.

The first thing that the Creation Account tells us is that God created light. In fact, Jesus is the True Light. Light is associated with good and cannot co-exist with darkness, which is synonymous with evil. The Apostle John in 1 Jn 1:5 tells us that “God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.” Evil exists as a result of free choice - evil is the absence of good or light, when we choose darkness.

The next thing that the Creation Account tells us is that the First Day foreshadowed the Fall of Man. Because of sin, our starting point - like that of Creation - is darkness. The Apostle Paul in Rom 3:23 tells us that “all have sinned and fall short of the glory (or light) of God.” Separated from God as darkness is from light, we are left formless and empty. In the dark, we cannot see ourselves or our surroundings. We do not know who or where we are, what we ought to become or where we ought to be headed. Instead, just as darkness flees from the light, our tendency whenever we sin is to run away or hide our shame/wrongdoing from God just like what Adam and Eve did (Gen 3:8). Like Cain, we are condemned to become “restless wanderers” here on earth (Gen 4:12). Now, the most wonderful part here is that God already knew all this from the very beginning. And only He can reconcile us back to Him - in Jesus.

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