“The whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth up to the present time…” Romans 8:22-24
“He who was seated on the throne said, ‘I am making everything new!’ Then He said, ‘Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.’ Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away,” Revelation 21:5.1.
Human beings and their most immediate living environment are not the only ones in the state of groaning in the anticipation of redemption reaching its climax. The entire universe, including its most distant parts, are groaning just as much.
The moment Adam and Eve made a fatal decision to distrust God something drastically altering happened to the design and the inner workings of the entire creation, entire world, entire universe. Sin, death and decay shook the universe, and altered its character just as dearly as they impacted our human character. So, when we are today wistfully looking at the distant stars and planets, hoping that one day our human salvation will come from one of those alienated places, we are forgetting that we are seeking to find our rescue in the realms of sin and decay no different than our own.
Since the day of the Fall we have been living quarantined within the boundaries of drastically altered universe. With the help of our physical and mental faculties alone we are capable of perceiving the truth of God’s creation only as far as the affected alternations would allow. Thus, when we try to look within ourselves, or as far as the most powerful electronic telescopes would guide us, we always see caricatured and misleading shadows and shapes of the originally intended design. We see only what the flickering lights are projecting on the walls of the Plato’s cave. The transgression of the first couple (Adam and Eve) has infected us all profoundly. Everything integrated into the realms of God’s creation shares in the painful consequences of rebellion, sin, death and decay.
When God closed the gates of the Garden of Eden to Adam and Eve (Genesis 3:23), that meant much more than only an inconvenient separation from the conveniences of a beautiful and comfortable home. It meant that they were locked out of, and veiled from enjoying the wholeness and the wellness of God’s creation, and thus from the proper understanding of how it operates. We, human beings, together with our earthly world, and the entire universe with its most beautiful galaxies have been ever since on lockdown.
This simply means that we who used to live in the golden age of a three-dimensional world (or more), metaphorically speaking, have been demoted to living in the flatness of a two-dimensional shadow. The bottom line is this: the entire universe contained within its space and time limitations has got the expiration date, the same way as our human death marks the expiration date of our human lives. There is no evolution available to save us through the mechanism of endless improvements leading towards perfection. All the fascination with grabbing the evolution fantasy and turning it into our own savior through genetic manipulations, or merging with artificial intelligence advancements are a big delusion that by each new step of preceived advancement only further reveal how crippled we are.
No wonder Paul talks about the whole nature (people, animals, whole natural world, universe) “groaning as in the pains of childbirth up to the present time.” Romans 8:22-24. In other words, in its own way the entire universe moans, groans and cries: “How long, Lord? How long?”
But the good news is here: “In Christ, and only in Christ (the second Adam) the veil is taken away.” 2. Cor. 3:16. Because God decided to reveal Himself in a radical way through Jesus we are not going to stay forever in the Plato’s cave of flickering lights, spiritually and empirically blind, and with only a shadowy and sketchy access to the ever-evading truth, always delusional and always substituting a shadow for the truth.
The promise is ours. “He who was seated on the throne said, ‘I am making everything new!’ Then He said, ‘Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.’ Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away,” Revelation 21:5.1.
Until then we will continue to see the reality of God’s creation only “through a glass, darkly.” 1. Corinthians 13:12.