John Alan Turner

Writer, Theologian, Consultant, Speaker, Teacher

The First Verb

The first verb in the Bible -- the fifth word in the English translation -- is "created". As in, "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." Before God did anything else -- before he rescues or redeems or gives a command or anything -- he creates.

Why don't churches talk more about that? We talk about creation, but we talk about it in a utilitarian, this-proves-a-bigger-point kind of way. We talk about it in the context of countering darwinian evolution and naturalism. We talk about God having the right to make certain demands because he is the Creator and we are the creation.

But we don't talk much about God as a creative person.

You'd think creativity would play a larger role in the life of a church seeking to be the incarnational presence of God in this world. But it doesn't.

We're fond of verbs in the Bible: trust; obey; respond; tell; go; love; serve. Preachers all across the world had sermons with lots of verbs in them yesterday. Millions of people attended and were told to do various things in order to become more like Jesus.

I wonder how many of them were told to be creative. And I wonder why we don't talk about it more.