Origin Story intro post, here.
POWER, CATASTROPHE, POTENTIAL
Having read the book of Genesis countless times, I had essentially assumed that the first point of discussion would be related to water. As I’ve been reading, new questions have come to mind that I’ve never considered before ~ questions, primarily, of Potential.
For one thing, there is an enormous amount of content in the very first verse, much information we are not privy to: In the beginning, God created the heavens and [then] the earth. The earth was formless and empty, and darkness covered the deep waters. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face the waters. [Genesis 1:1-2]
So, like, Darkness was. Already. Taking into account the millennia that have passed, the ancient Eastern and post-modern Western storytelling stratifications that exist, and you know, language barriers, my thought is that for darkness to be covering something ~ acting out a verb, it has to be. So that’s what sparked my first note on Potential. And, of course, a flood of questions… like what all happened in the huge chunk of heaven being created that allowed for darkness to be and to be covering the deep? . .
Throughout scripture, God has a fascinating relationship to darkness. In some places, it is said that He is light and in Him there is no darkness at all [1 John 1:5], and in other places, it is said that clouds and thick darkness surround Him [Psalm 97:2]. So idk, do with that what you will.
The other thing that was was Evil. Again, this is just my thought from the fact that God places the tree of the knowledge of good and evil in the middle of the Garden that He makes [Genesis 2:9].
In order for there to be knowledge of something it has to either be, or there has to exist the potential for it to be, which is ~ arguably ~ an antecedent sense of existence. You can’t have knowledge of something that is not because even if you think it up, it begins to exist in your mind as a notion. And when it comes to notions like evil, the thought is really all the start you need.
So all in the first few verses, after decades of familiarization with this story, I am refreshingly astounded. Because We are not where the Story begins; we are not all there is. Who knows how long it took to make the heavens, or what occurred or didn’t occur that allowed for Darkness and Evil to already be by the time we were beings, Instructed. Crazy stuff. Quite a story…
But something is True about our collective existence. We can believe it’s all a spectacular accident which is, in some ways, easier than believing that it’s all a far more wild, terrifying, sweet, and holy intentionality than we have the capacity to understand.