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Realizing the presence, promise, and power of the Kingdom of God.

Creation Restored

Heaven is not the Christian's final destination.

For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God.

  - Romans 8.19

But because the restoration of their former blessedness for the better is promised to the human race through the coming of a redeemer, there is no doubt creation too will receive [back] its ancient glory.

  - Anonymous, Liber de Ordine Creaturarum (Irish, 7th century)

Celtic Christians maintained a deep appreciation of and love for the created world. They received with gratitude and joy the many gifts creation provided for meeting their needs. They looked to the God to protect them through the powers of the created world. Creation prompted Celtic Christians to many forms of praise to God, and it informed much of their proclamation concerning His greatness, majesty, power, and love.

They believed that one day the wounded creation would be restored to its pristine goodness, even as they believed for themselves. But they also understood the duty of "sanctifying" the creation - working to realize its progressive renewal - even as they looked to the Lord for their own sanctification.

In other words, active engagement for the glory of God with the creatures, places, and things of creation was an important component of the Celtic Christian's experience of salvation. Those who had come to know the grace of God in salvation sought to extend that renewing grace to every creature - human or otherwise.

Heaven is not the Christian's final destination. The new heaven and new earth holds that place. Which means that, for all eternity, we will be enjoying the company of fully glorified saints in a fully glorified creation in the unobstructed presence of the full and fathomless God and His glory. As we prepare personally for this eternal destiny, striving to bring holiness to completion in the fear of God and proclaiming the Gospel to every person, so let us consider how we might bring a measure of healing and restoration to the creation which God Himself loves.

Even something so seemingly small as feeding the birds, caring for a lawn, or participating in a community clean-up of a local creek or wood can provide a way of reflecting God's love for His creation. Through such activities we can express our anticipation of the full restoration of the cosmos to that "very good" condition in which it was first created.

God so loved the cosmos that He gave His Son for our and its redemption. Do we love the world God loves enough to take meaningful steps to work for its restoration?

T. M. Moore, Principal

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How's your grasp of the overall story of Scripture and how to "get at" that story in meaningful and life-changing ways? Enroll in the course, BT 1 Getting God's Word, and we'll help you to develop a more powerful and transformative relationship with your Bible. Order copies of If Men Will Pray for all the men in your life, and challenge them to take seriously Paul's instructions about this important matter.

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in the Champlain Valley of Vermont.
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