In the vein of our recent conversations surrounding creators (basically, people) as made in the image and likeness of God, I thought it might be appropriate to share something I wrote a few years ago about the first creation - the first image-bearers. The Beginning / The Separation is a contribution to a collective effort from thirteen different spoken-word and rap artists that take separate pieces of Scripture's redemptive, historical narrative and tell The Story Of God. This piece explores not only the image of God in man through his good and perfect creation, but also the distortion of that image - the broken mirror, if you will - at the fall. The piece dissects old lies that remain continual distortions of who God is as creator, and who we are as creation; a creation constantly erecting idols and reversing roles. Today, we find ourselves hopeful for freedom from those age-old lies biting at our heels, through the same promise of mercy given to our first parents:
Jesus has crushed the head of the serpent.
In the beginning...
God spoke, and God I hope his voice sounded like thunder (like that's where it got it's name from), like it reverberated inside of the son's eardrums. I wonder: did the father turn to the preincarnate word to ask him about the sound he'd heard? And did he smile and contemplate the earth while the spirit confirmed their plans?
And God said, "let there be…" and God, did that unparalleled melody sustain into all eternity while the blessed trinity joined in harmony to key in a void and formless land? Is the expanse between earth and sky as deep and wide as the difference between dark and light and did you stare at the stars like I stare at your night, and how bright do they shine from outside of time, and if there is no need for the suns in your kingdom, well did you need them?
See, I cannot fathom the winds and the waves, let alone the waves the winds made on the day that you say, "it is good," and no depraved gaze preys on your spirit's conversation with the creation you made. I can hardly see it! Even my imagination wanes beneath the death that deteriorates at my faith! But before a fog dimly, behind Eden's gates, man - man - walked hand in hand with his God, face to face.
"Let us make man in our image." Dust into clay, bestowing dignity to humanity the potter crafted and shaped… and when you breathed life into him, was it a whirlwind?
"In the beginning...
God spoke, and the heavens were made, and all their host by the breath of his mouth." and the details are speculation, but I picture your creation of man as glory that that heavenly host sung about. His chest rises and falls beneath this cosmic anticipation waiting to see him open his eyes for the first time… his eyes open and close and if there was an expectation, it was exceeded in pupils finally dilated to find: GOD. Holding out his hand in a posture that hasn't changed just like his plan hasn't changed since day one. And I like to think that they danced to the glory of his name, three in one as the breath in man's lungs. Perfect.
And God put him to work and, work (ha! and if only work were the work of the fall)... A cultivator in the vein of his creator, tended to the garden, invited to enjoy it all, save. one. thing. [and that is freedom: unparalleled pleasure sustained within boundaries] Just do not go near that tree. Its fruit is divisive, its knowledge unseen, but not something that you need. What you need? What you need is a helper, and here a twist of irony: that man is no good without his eve. Sleep deeply; deep sleeping, he fashioned what Adam never found among the beasts, and, awoke from his peace: an apologetic for poetry: the first words spoken were spoken words: "At last, bone of my bone, and flesh of my flesh." One woman, one man, naked and unashamed to consummate the one plan that god had for his people, we call that "equal."
In the beginning...
was the word, and the word was with god, and the word watched Satan fall from heaven like lightening, and I'll bet that it was beautiful, that angel of light-ening up the sky like he could shine as bright as the son. "Did God really say?" and he still begins everything that he does by questioning the authority of the word of the one who did not succumb to his schemes… but the same cannot be said for Eve (the mother of the living, and of the dead offspring who labor beneath the curse that drips from good and evil's leaves…) "You will not die, and God knows that it's true, but god doesn't want truth to be made known to you." And as it delighted her eyes, she took of the fruit and her husband stood by almost as if to assume that the fault wouldn't fall to the man in the room if he used his bride to hide his cowardice before he took a bite, too. Evening, come king's wind, calling, "where are you?"
And I wonder what their friend felt like? Like his heart had been broken in two? Like from the overflow of his soul he crafted these people that were known, but sought to dethrone their lover's rule. "Who told you that you were naked? Did you eat of that forbidden fruit?" And the enemy still distorts "obedience" for "constriction", as oppose to opportunity to worship you. Well I guess he lives up to his name: serpent, constricting, fame-thief slithering fangs sucking blood from my veins, while life and death hang in the balance, and we suffer beneath the weight of satan, sin, death, flesh and it's effects as justly sentenced to us on that day.
What of man? And God said, "let there be enmity..." and God, did that devastating melody leave any hope for me while the brokenhearted trinity joined in harmony to agree to go forth with your plans? Is the expanse between earth and sky as deep and wide as the separation between you and I? And do you long for my heart like I long for your eyes to shine bright and fill the universal void that's in mine and if you do still long to call sons to your kingdom, well will you free them?
See, I can cannot fathom the height nor the depth, let alone the scope or breadth of your love on the day that you wept and sent humanity from your presence, watching as they went, and continue to walk away as though we owe no debt. I can see it.
Look, in the beginning God spoke, so is there no hope left? Do we all lay down and die the way we made our beds?
In the beginning,
God spoke, and is there no hope left?
Devil, you will bruise his heel, but he will crush your head.