SermonHarming Creation Dishonors God
An all-creatures Bible Message

Harming Creation Dishonors God
 
A Sermon Delivered to
The Compassion Internet Church
 
2 August 2020
 
Frank L. Hoffman, Pastor

Scripture References

Genesis 32:22-32
Psalm 17:1-15
Matthew 14:13-21
 
Harming creation dishonors God, because God gave us the use of it, and charged us with protecting it, the whole of creation, which included every human, every animal, and the environment in which we all live; thus, by doing the opposite of Godís desire, we, as a society, have dishonored Him.
 
Think about the fact that there is no pain or suffering or death in the new heaven, which is obviously in the heavenly will of God, and we are instructed in the second part of the Lordís Prayer to bring our Fatherís heavenly will to earth as it is in heaven; therefore, it only stands to reason that not living in the peaceful way of Eden where there was also no pain or suffering or death, dishonors God.
 
Our societal violence and warring madness that causes millions of humans and billions of animals to suffer and die every year is the primary cause of corrupting creation, which to us says that the people who do or support these things donít love God or His creation.
 
Harming creation dishonors God.
 
Letís take a look at Genesis 32:22-32, and see how this fits into our discussion.
 
22. Now he [Jacob] arose that same night and took his two wives and his two maids and his eleven children, and crossed the ford of the Jabbok.
 
This is the night before Jacob meets his estranged brother Esau, who he most likely feared would want to take vengeance upon him for taking his birthright.
 
When we look at this verse and compare it with the next verse, it appears that in this verse Jacob crosses over the Jabbok with everyone else in his caravan, but in the next verse it says that he sent everyone on ahead of him.
 
23. And he took them and sent them across the stream. And he sent across whatever he had.
 
Nowhere are we told that he crossed back over the Jabbok, so we are left with the question of what actually took place, but we believe that Jacob felt that if Esau attacked him, he would not hurt his family if he was not there with them.
 
24. Then Jacob was left alone, and a man wrestled with him until daybreak.
 
This is not a normal man; it is most likely an angel of the Lord whose strength seems to be equally matched to Jacobís strength.
 
25. And when he [the angel] saw that he had not prevailed against him, he touched the socket of his thigh; so the socket of Jacob's thigh was dislocated while he wrestled with him.
 
The physical strength of the angel could not prevail over Jacob, but he still had supernatural power which he used, but when wrestling with God or His angel, there is always a spiritual aspect to the encounter which we are not told about, but we need to think about.
 
26. Then he said, "Let me go, for the dawn is breaking." But he said, "I will not let you go unless you bless me."
 
Jacob most likely knew that he was wrestling with an angel of the Lord and felt that something was changing in his life, and he would not let him go until the angel blessed him.
 
27. So he said to him, "What is your name?" And he said, "Jacob."
 
Instead of just blessing Jacob, the angel asks his name which means one who grasps the heel or a deceiver, and by having Jacob tell him his name, it would remind Jacob about who he was.
 
28. And he said, "Your name shall no longer be Jacob, but Israel; for you have striven with God and with men and have prevailed."
 
This name change doesnít sound like a blessing at first glance in our Bibles, but if we think about it in the Hebrew it is quite a blessing, for in changing his name Jacob is being told that he is no longer a deceiver, but one who wrestles with God about physical and spiritual matters.
 
29. Then Jacob asked him and said, "Please tell me your name." But he said, "Why is it that you ask my name?" And he blessed him there.
 
The angel never mentions his name, but instead appears to add another blessing which we are not told about.
 
Jacob could even have been wrestling with the spiritual Jesus, for He certainly changes lives.
 
30. So Jacob named the place Peniel, for he said, "I have seen God face to face, yet my life has been preserved."
 
This is a further indication that this could have been Jesus, and that Jacob recognizes that because of the sin in his life, he should have died, so something must have changed in his life; could this have been his born-again experience?
 
31. Now the sun rose upon him just as he crossed over Penuel, and he was limping on his thigh.
 
The Lord had left Israel with a constant physical sign as a reminder of who he was.
 
32. Therefore, to this day the sons of Israel do not eat the sinew of the hip which is on the socket of the thigh, because he touched the socket of Jacob's thigh in the sinew of the hip.
NASB
 
This is a ritualized way of people trying to honor God, but we donít believe that they are, because they are still living in the violent ways of this world and killing innocent animals who they donít need to eat, and who were to be our companions and not our food.
 
If we truly want to honor God, we should be living in His heavenly will and doing everything in our power to free creation from its present corruption.
 
Harming creation dishonors God.
 
Letís continue our discussion by looking at Psalm 17:1-15, a psalm and prayer of David.
 
1. Hear a just cause, O LORD, give heed to my cry;
Give ear to my prayer, which is not from deceitful lips.
 
For something to be a just cause it cannot come from deceitful lips, it must be in the heavenly will of God.
 
2. Let my judgment come forth from Thy presence;
Let Thine eyes look with equity.
 
If we are sincerely trying to do and say everything in the heavenly will of God, then God does respond in a favorable way towards us.
 
3. Thou hast tried my heart;
Thou hast visited me by night;
Thou hast tested me and dost find nothing;
I have purposed that my mouth will not transgress.
 
This may have been what David desired, but in his lifetime he did a lot of things that greatly displeased and even angered God.
 
4. As for the deeds of men, by the word of Thy lips
I have kept from the paths of the violent.
 
This isnít true, for David killed many animals and fought in many battles and even had Uriah killed.
 
5. My steps have held fast to Thy paths.
My feet have not slipped.
 
This also isnít true, but David did repent for the things he did wrong, just as we should always do.
 
6. I have called upon Thee, for Thou wilt answer me, O God;
Incline Thine ear to me, hear my speech.
 
God always hears what we say, but He may not answer us if we are deceitful; what we say and do must always be in the heavenly will of God, or we must repent and seek to do everything as God desires.
 
7. Wondrously show Thy lovingkindness,
O Savior of those who take refuge at Thy right hand
From those who rise up against them.
 
God does this, but not always, for many saints have been killed by those who rose up against them, including Jesus, but if we hold on to our faith it will honor God before the people and we shall be in heaven with the Lord forever and ever.
 
8. Keep me as the apple of the eye;
Hide me in the shadow of Thy wings,
 
God does seem to do this for all His peacemaking children who live in His heavenly will, as we hope and pray that we all do.
 
9. From the wicked who despoil me,
My deadly enemies, who surround me.
 
Think of this in terms of Jesusí life; God did protect Him throughout the three and a half years of His ministry until the end, when He allowed their evilness to prevail, so that He could use it to strengthen the faithful and be an everlasting witness against the evil people of this world.
 
10. They have closed their unfeeling heart;
With their mouth they speak proudly.
 
Think about this in terms of the people who kill animals and those who support them; isnít this the way that most of them are, at least to some degree?
 
11. They have now surrounded us in our steps;
They set their eyes to cast us down to the ground.
 
Unfortunately this has been happening in most of our churches against Christian vegan animal rights people.
 
12. He is like a lion that is eager to tear,
And as a young lion lurking in hiding places.
 
We believe that David is referring to the devil and those who follow his ungodly ways.
 
13. Arise, O LORD, confront him, bring him low;
Deliver my soul from the wicked with Thy sword,
 
And like David, we should pray for the Lord to confront these evil people and deliver us from them, but letís think about these evil people in terms of what David wrote next.
 
14. From men with Thy hand, O LORD,
From men of the world, whose portion is in this life;
And whose belly Thou dost fill with Thy treasure;
They are satisfied with children,
And leave their abundance to their babes.
 
The men of the world are those who live in the corrupt ways of the world, whose bellies are filled with the flesh and byproducts of animals who are really part of Godís treasure, and they leave what they have to their children without consideration for God and His creation.
 
15. As for me, I shall behold Thy face in righteousness;
I will be satisfied with Thy likeness when I awake.
NASB
 
Are we satisfied with what the Lord gives us?
 
We should be.
 
However, we are never to stop there, we should always desire to do more to further the kingdom of God here on earth where most people continue to corrupt the earth, for harming creation dishonors God, and we are to honor Him with everything we do and say.
 
Letís finish our discussion about how harming creation dishonors God by looking at Matthew 14:13-21.
 
13. Now when Jesus heard it [that John the Baptist had been beheaded in prison], He withdrew from there in a boat, to a lonely place by Himself; and when the multitudes heard of this, they followed Him on foot from the cities.
 
Sometimes even the Lord needs to get away from all the violence and death that the people of the world cause.
 
It is also most likely that most of the multitude were not seeking to comfort Jesus, but to get Him to show them some miracle or to just talk to them as a form of entertainment.
 
14. And when He went ashore, He saw a great multitude, and felt compassion for them, and healed their sick.
 
This is what they came to see, and perhaps to be healed of some physical malady.
 
15. And when it was evening, the disciples came to Him, saying, "The place is desolate, and the time is already past; so send the multitudes away, that they may go into the villages and buy food for themselves."
 
The disciples were concerned about the welfare of the people but didnít seem to think that Jesus could perform a miracle to feed them.
 
16. But Jesus said to them, "They do not need to go away; you give them something to eat!" 
 
So Jesus tests the faith of the disciples.
 
17. And they said to Him, "We have here only five loaves and two fish."
 
18. And He said, "Bring them here to Me." 
 
Jesus was showing them that with faith these few items were enough to feed the people.
 
19. And ordering the multitudes to recline on the grass, He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up toward heaven, He blessed the food, and breaking the loaves He gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave to the multitudes,
 
Notice in this Matthew account there is no mention of Jesus doing anything with the two fish, which is most likely the true account because fishing destroys part of Godís creation, just as the killing of John did.
 
20. and they all ate, and were satisfied. And they picked up what was left over of the broken pieces, twelve full baskets.
 
And note that all of the people were satisfied which means that none of them wanted any more to eat, and there was more bread left over than they had in the beginning.
 
To us, Jesus is showing the people that we donít have to cause any pain, suffering, or death to any aspect of Godís creation to have enough to eat and be satisfied.
 
21. And there were about five thousand men who ate, aside from women and children.
NASB
 
Thatís a lot of people, and we doubt that very many of the people repented of their worldly ways and truly desired to live in the heavenly will of God.
 
Destroying creation dishonors God, but helping to free creation from its present corruption honors God.
 
Amen?
 
Amen.

Return to: Sermons Archive