In today’s session, we’re going to be discussing the importance of thinking about God as creator. To get us thinking, discuss the following question...
What is the best thing you’ve ever created from scratch?
This story comes from an international student worker from York:
“I met up for coffee with an international student who had never read the Bible before. When we started reading the opening of Genesis together, the student started to cry. She shared that she had never been told that she was a created person—this was a truly breath-taking revelation to her.”
What difference do you think it makes to think of the universe and ourselves as created by God? Listen to a song together and take a few moments to remind yourself of this amazing truth. [suggested music Creation Song—Josh Garrels]
‘The Theology of Creation’ Dr. Joanna Leidenhag [16 minutes]
If there are any science students in the room, encourage them to share what it means to them to be a Christian who cares about science. What can science and theology offer one another? And why do they so often seem to be in tension?
How does relating to God as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit impact how we think about creation? What did you make of Joanna’s discussion of how reflecting on the persons of the Trinity changes our understanding of creation?
Read Psalm 8 together. How does this passage talk about how we should relate to creation and relate to God as creator? Joanna discussed two ways of thinking about our relationship to creation: as dominions/stewards of creation, and as worship leaders and friends of creation. What do you think about the difference of these two approaches and how are they reflected in this passage?
Joanna talks about how a concern for creation is something which the Church shares with wider society. Where do you see people who have a concern for creation in our society, and how could the Church be part of this conversation? How can you in your life connect with those who have this common concern for creation?
Group leaders, for this activity you will need: pens and paper
Joanna talked about how our theology of creation shapes the way we relate to our world. Let’s take some time to think about our own relationship to the world.
First, try to list all of the things you have consumed, disposed of, and used over the past week. Try to be as specific as possible.
How has what you believe about creation been reflected in your actions?
How might your theology inform your actions going forward? Try to pick a few concrete actions relating to the things you’ve listed.
Joanna talked about how engaging with theology has increased her confidence in embracing uncertainty in answering theological questions. How have you found engaging with theological questions in these sessions so far?
David Fergusson, 2014. Creation (William B. Eerdmans).
Simon Oliver, 2017. Creation: A Guide for the Perplexed (Bloomsbury).