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B'resheet/Genesis 1:1 In the beginning, G-d created the heavens and the earth (NASB)
Rashi tells us that Rav Yitz'chak suggested that the Torah could have begun with the commandment to observe the New Moon as it it the first commandment given to the Jewish people as a nation and instituted the Jewish Calendar. "This month shall be the beginning of months for you; it is to be the first month of the year for you" (Shemot 12:2, NASB). Rashi then goes on to connect our verse to Tehelim/Psalm 111:6 where the Psalmist tells us that "He has made known to His people the power of His works, to give them the heritage of the nations." He then adds the comment that since G-d created the world, He also has the right to give it to whomsoever He pleases (Jeremiah 27:5). It can be difficult to accept G-d's gifts and those to whom He chooses to give them without knowing that He has that right as the Creator of all things. Beginning with the creation can be foundational.
The fact that the whole Bible starts at the beginning rather than some other part of history, however logical, teaches us two important things about life in malchut ha'shamayim, the kingdom of G-d. The first thing we learn is that our relationship with Him must start at the beginning; we cannot jump in part-way through to suit ourselves. As believers in Messiah Yeshua, we have to come to Him first and enter the kingdom through the narrow gate. Until we have made t'shuvah, repented of our sin, there is a barrier between us and G-d. The second thing we learn is that as we go through our lives, G-d desires to fashion the likeness of His Son in us and in order to do this, He builds certain character traits and habits while removing others. In each of these operations there is a beginning and He has to take us there for the work to start.
If we want to know Him and receive the heritage of the nations, we have first to see and acknowledge Him as the Creator and Authority in both the Universe and our lives; then we have to allow Him to make new beginnings in our lives.
Further Study: John 1:1-3, Col 1:14-17
Application: Is there an area of your life today that G-d is drawing to your attention, so that He may make a new beginning? Look out for G-d showing you the power of His works so that He may share with you the heritage of the nations.
© Jonathan Allen, 2003
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