(Editor's Note: Special thanks to Doug Moody for permission to post this article on www.BeyondCreationScience.com.)


 
In the Beginning was the Word
  by Doug Moody
 
By the logic of covenant creation, "THE BEGINNING" was not the beginning of the earth, in a physical sense, but the beginning of a covenantal relationship with people. Conversely, and logically using the same hermeneutic consistently, THE END would mean the end of a covenantal relationship with people. At least that is what detractors might wish to say. I intend in this article to show how covenantally, the fault with the old covenant was not about God, but about man, but the reason the NEW covenant lasts forever is because it is not based on that which is created, but upon the creator Himself!

As shown in BCS, the covenantal relationship was carried through certain individuals, and later through entire nations. When those nations rejected the covenantal terms of their agreement with God, He rejected them too, and brought it [the terms of the old covenant) all to a final end in 70AD.

But the agreement under the NEW covenant continued past 70AD because it is an everlasting covenant. How do I know that? Because of the identification of the time span of the one who IS the covenant, namely Jesus Christ. Heb. 1:12 says "And as a vesture shall you fold them (the heavens and earth and the works developed under them through Israel's offerings, washings, and other obligations of the law) up, and they (the terms of the old covenant) shall be changed (changed into what? a new covenant), but you are the same and your years shall not fail." Clearly Jesus Christ, because He was at the center of the old covenant, but was not at fault in that original agreement, must be the only unchangeable part of God's covenant with man. This is why Hebrews makes the statement about Him enduring forever.

John 1:1 says "In the beginning was the Word."

What beginning was it talking about? I would propose that this was the beginning of the covenant with man, Adam and Eve. If we suppose that the "beginning" here in John 1 is talking about a physical beginning, we have the same conundrum we have with identifying the beginning of Genesis 1 with a physical creation. Are we to suppose that the old or new covenant was created PRIOR to the beginning of man? Certainly not. It is the same principle Jesus expounded about the sabbath when He declared it was made for man, not man for the sabbath. The terms of any agreement must have parties who are cognizant of its terms and agree to them. When there is no man present, there can be no covenant made with him. Therefore, I believe that "In the beginning was the Word" is a statement about the Lord walking in the garden of Eden and communing with His special creation. It is NOT talking about Jesus being present at the creation of the stars and planets. I am not saying He did not create those things, but I am saying that "The beginning" mentioned in John 1 is clear language intended to convey that there is life in Jesus Christ and no other. Verse 4 says "In Him was life, and the life was the light of MEN." Again, clearly showing, in proximate context by its placement in John 1, that we are not discussing the physical, but the spiritual and eternal aspects of the beginning, and that they are placed in conjunction with relationship between God and men. That relationship was begun in only one recorded place in the bible, namely Genesis.

John 1:9 says, "That was the true light that lights every man that comes into the world." Are we to extrapolate from this verse that everyone in "the world" is enlightened by Jesus? In a physical interpretation of John 1, that would be true. But in a spiritual sense, that is not possible, because not all people "come into the world." I interpret this to say that this verse is saying that IF you are in Jesus, you are in HIS world. Not just a physical world. It can mean no other thing! It is mind boggling then (at least for me) that there is a world spoken of here which is a "new creation" world, not made of hands or carved out by man, but it is an eternal and invisible "world" To say otherwise is to say that the "lightening" that Christ lights up is only one that is among many lights. But He is the true light, and those He enlightens are in HIS world, namely, His kingdom!

Furthermore, John 1:10 says "He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.

Who, or what, exactly is "the world" spoken of here? If in the first phrase it means that He was [physically] located someplace in the "world", then how is it that in the last phrase (of 3 phrases in that verse referring to "the world") this "world" knew Him not? How is it possible that a physical creation can even know someone. Rocks and trees cannot know anything. They are inanimate. Clearly, THIS world in verse 10 is a world of people. It is clarified in verse 11 when it states that "He came unto his own (covenant people) and they received him not" They did not recognize who their leader was, and rejected Him, thereby breaking the old covenant. His offering on the cross, and the end of it in 70 AD was the final divorce decree.

As an aside, I think the last mention of "the world" in John 1:10
is interesting. Thereafter, those who are in covenant with Jesus are called "us." It's interesting because the writer here obviously wants to distance himself from the wording of the first 10 verses and calls the NEW sons of God "us". No longer does the writer identify himself or other christians as "of the world" I thin it is intentional and juxtaposed this way so that there is a comparison and contrast between those of "the world" the old covenantal people" and "us," the new covenantal people.

Now, all that said, lets tie it together in Revelation. Rev 1:8 "I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending."

With what we just saw in John 1, is it not logical and biblically justifiable, that "In the beginning" was the garden of Eden and the beginning of a covenantal relationship with mankind, spelled out in old covenant terms? One might justifiable ask then, what is the end? The short answer is that there isn't any end. Why? Well, as we shall see, it is because the new covenant is built on better promises.

"Omega" or Jesus, is BOTH beginning AND ending the covenants. He is there in the garden, and He is there at the cross. But seeing as the new covenant is UNI-lateral in its origins, it does not depend on mankind to either obey or disobey it. That is why the NEW covenant cannot be broken and why it is eternal - because it does not depend on a finite thing, like man, to uphold part of the bargain. Jesus paid it ALL, and as stated in Heb 6:13-20, God, because He could swear by nothing greater than Himself, started the terms of the new covenant with Abraham (a covenant of faith, BTW) by swearing an oath Himself. We who are in the new covenant (relationship) with Jesus are assured that THIS covenant lasts forever, because it is not sealed by the will of men, but by the will of God, who cannot change.

This is such a hopeful message, and to those who are detractors of preterism, who say that our message is one of no hope because there is no end to it, I say GOD BE PRAISED THERE IS NO END! Actually, there is no hope to a theology that places the good things of this earth into the wastebasket and conjures up a God who made a mistake when He made it and has to start over and hopefully will get it right this time. Underneath the hood of futurism that is what is actually being said.

Preterism says the opposite. It says that in the beginning, God introduced Himself to man and made an agreement with him, which man broke. God knew he would, and from the foundation of the world (not the start of the dinosaurs, but the garden of Eden) planned it all out so that what ONLY is eternal, God Himself, would make a forever relationship (covenant). That is why it goes on forever. The earth is part of God's kingdom. Just because we can't [yet] see the invisible part of the kingdom does not mean we aren't part of it. We are as much in God's kingdom as we will ever be. The only difference is that at our death we will have new eyes to see how big it all really is! Now that's REAL hope!
 
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