Work the Ground
“When no bush of the field was yet in the land and no small plant of the field had yet sprung up—for the LORD God had not caused it to rain on the land, and there was no man to work the ground, and a mist was going up from the land and was watering the whole face of the ground” – Genesis 2:5-6
There are several interesting things about these verses. We know from Genesis 1, that vegetation was created before the sun and mankind. But to what degree had God made vegetation? Here it says that “no small plant had yet sprung up”, does this suggest then that God had only created seeds or seedlings in the initial creation? This we don’t know, but what we do know is that God created them, and this is a simple yet crucial truth we must stand strong in believing. He created these organisms that needed other parts of His creation to live, grow and survive; namely the sun, the rain and man to maintain them.
Lord of All
We see here that even the rain is under God’s controlling Lordship. He had not yet caused it to rain, and this should stop us in our tracks. How often is it that we don’t even think about a rainy day being an intentional cause of God. In order for it to rain it needed to be done by Him in His time with His purpose, not some natural or accidental consequence. He is Lord even over the atmosphere. There was only One God who could do this, His name is YAWEH (LORD), known to all people at the time as the God of the Jews, the personal, powerful Creator God.
Another interesting thing we see here is the necessity of man to work the land. Remembering that work was created by God as a great thing, something to be enjoyed at all times, giving man a sense of purpose and accomplishment and allowing him to feel a sense of entitlement in what God had given him. This was work before the Fall, this was the perfect work environment. This isn’t to say we can’t change our own hearts toward work today, even though it’s burdensome, tiring, emotionally and physically draining and often far less than enjoyable. As we work we still can take pride and feel great when we accomplish and take ownership of a task before us. We do this as we work “as for the Lord” (Colossians 3:23 )
Not Only Then
It was not only in the account of Creation when God had a purpose for a man to be a part of what He was growing. Now even more than ever are we commissioned and have the privilege to be part of His amazing work. Now it is much more important than helping to plant, water and prune trees. We are to work the spiritual ground of our neighbourhood, city, country and world. God has Lordship over the entire process as He did in Genesis. He prepares people, places and prospects for us to reach out to and invest in. When we begin this Great Commission work, we feel accomplished as we see the family of God flourish, and what better “work” on the ground is there to do then seeing slaves freed.
“For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be glory forever. Amen.”