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GOD'S WORLD - What is expected of Man?

 


God's Covenant
When God created the universe, the earth, and everything in it. He created Mankind - man and woman - upon it. He created Mankind in the family. To this original family and their descendants He gave a covenant. Some call it the Cultural Mandate, others the Dominion Covenant. This is what it says:
"Then God said, 'Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth and over all the creatures that move along the ground.' So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. God blessed them and said to them, 'Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground." (Genesis 1:26-28)


God wanted Man to rule as His servant, His steward, for His glory, so that the whole earth would "be filled with the glory of God as the waters cover the seas." (Hab. 2:14) God wanted the whole earth to lift up its heart, hands, and voice in praise to Him. God wanted not only words, but obedience. But opting for their own independence, Adam and Eve fell.

The Dominion Covenant revealed to Noah, Abraham, and David
God repeated the Cultural Mandate to Noah and his descendants. Their godfearing families were to exercise dominion over the whole earth for God's glory. (Gen. 9) When later generations again became disobedient, God, after having scattered the people at Babel, repeated the Dominion Covenant to Abraham. He was to be the channel of God's blessing to all the scattered families of Mankind so that they might glorify God in the whole of the earth. God's blessing always comes in answer to men's faith-obedience to His Law-Word. (Gen. 15:6; 26:5) His message was: "In your [righteous] seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed." (Gen. 22:18) The promise was repeated to Isaac ( Gen. 26:4), Jacob (Gen 28:14), Judah (Gen. 49:10) and David (Is. 55:3-5). It was summed up in Psalm 22:25-38 where David prophesies:-
"From you comes my praise in the great assembly; before those who fear you, will I fulfill my vows.
The poor will eat and be satisfied; they who seek the LORD will praise him - may your hearts live for
ever! All the ends of the earth will remember and turn to the LORD, and all the families of the nations
will bow down before him, for dominion belongs to the LORD and he rules over the nations." -


In Psalm 8 David repeats the basic Dominion Covenant in almost the same words that God had spoken to Adam, saying:
"When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him? You made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honour." (Ps. 8:3-5)
David is saying that Adam (Mankind) was created to be the Servant of God - the chief of God's Creation on the earth. But he decided he did not want to implicitly trust in the wisdom of God. He did not want to be the ruler under God of the Creation. Adam gave up his high position. In the name of personal wisdom and freedom he became disobedient.
"You [God] made him [originally] ruler over the works of your hands; you put everything under his feet:
all flocks and herds, and the beasts of the field, the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea, all that swim
the paths of the seas. O LORD, our Lord how majestic is your name in all the earth!" (Ps. 8:6-9)


Because the righteous are God's true servants and because they obey God's Law-word, they are to be in
dominion over the earth. God's Law is to go forth from heavenly Zion through His Servants, His Body, as a light of justice to all the peoples of the earth. The wicked, however, exercise a false dominion over the earth serving Satan and using his 'law'.
"The Lord's curse is on the house of the wicked but he blesses the home of the righteous." (Pr. 3:33)
"The wealth of the wicked is laid up for the righteous." (Pr. 13:22)
"The upright will live in the land, and the blameless will remain in it. But the wicked will be cut off
from the land and the unfaithful will be torn from it." (Pr. 2:21-22)
"The humble shall inherit the land." (Ps. 5:5)
"Blessed are the meek for they shall inherit the earth." (Matt. 5:5)
"The LORD watches over the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish." (Psalm 1)
"Wait for the LORD and keep his way. He will exalt you to possess the land; when the wicked are cut
off, you will see it." (Read the whole of Psalm 37)


God's principle is that the righteous are to multiply, fill the earth, 'inherit the wealth of the wicked', and exercise dominion over that wealth for God's glory, under the guidance of His Law, on the earth before the return of Christ.

The Dominion Covenant in the New Testament
The first Adam, however, fell and came under the rule of Satan, but God sent the Second Man, the Second
Adam, into the earth - our Lord Jesus Christ and made Him the fulfiller of the Dominion Mandate. In Hebrew Psalm 8 is quoted, but this time as applying to Jesus:
"You [God] crowned him with glory and honour and put everything under his feet." (Heb. 2:7)
"We see Jesus," says the author, "crowned with glory and honour." (Heb. 2:8f)
He who has overcome death and the world is seated upon His throne at the right hand of the Father. He is
the owner of the earth. He fulfills the Dominion Mandate and reigns through His believers in power.
Paul says:
"That power is like the working of his mighty strength, which [God] exerted in Christ when he raised
him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and
authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be given, not only in the present age but also in
the one to come. And God placed all things under his feet." (Eph. 1:19b-2:6)
"God has placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church…
his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way." (Eph. 1:22-23)


Though presently Mankind is not exercising godly dominion over the earth, Christ is reigning in Heaven waiting and working to put all His enemies as a footstool under His feet. All who obediently believe in Him are spiritually located "in Him in heavenly places." His death, resurrection and ascension are the guarantee of the victory of His Church in history. The Apostle John says:
We shall overcome, indeed "we have overcome. And this is the victory that has overcome the world, even our
faith." (1 John 4:4 and 5:4)
Christ is the promised Seed of Abraham in whom all the families of the peoples are blessed. Therefore, those who are in covenantal submission to Him share in His death and resurrection victory even now!


Caring for the World
The earth is the LORD's The triune God is the God of the Nations. Jesus is Lord of all - of agriculture, police, warfare, science, medicine, technology, the arts and literature, law, and politics. All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Him. (Matt. 28:18) The Bible teaches not only that every area of life must come under the Kingdom (Dominion) reign of King Jesus (Dan. 4:17, 25, 34-35; Ps. 103:19), but every People of the earth must come under that reign. Every ethnic group, with their "kings" (leaders), must be brought under His authority as prophesied by Daniel:
"In my vision… I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence. He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all peoples, nations and men of every language worshipped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed." (Dan. 7:14)


The present pessimistic attitude towards the future which is held by many churches does not come from the faith in Jesus Christ who has made us "more than conquerors" and in whom we "reign in life." (Rom. 8:37, 5:17) God's plan is that every tongue and tribe and nation should bow the knee to King Jesus before the end. This optimistic vision for the future is controversial now, but it has not always been so. God's plan is that the Gospel should grow from a tiny mustard seed to a large tree so that all the heathen peoples, including the Jews, would come under the shade of the branches of His Kingdom rule.

The Great Commission
Finally, the Dominion Covenant means "Disciple the Peoples!" Go and tell the heathens and all the self-deified socialist, Marxist and Secular Humanists who claim to be saviours of the planet and messiahs of men, that "Jesus is Lord!" That He is Lord of all Life, that His Law is our blueprint for transforming society. "To disciple" means to teach all to obey His commandments. He emphatically stated:
"Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law and the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill [or confirm] them. I tell you…, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. Anyone who breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. Now I tell you that unless your righteous-ness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven." (Matt. 5:17-20, cf. 7:24-27)

In treating the world as God's (not our) property and giving Him (not ourselves) all the glory, in respecting nature as His Creation, doing His will and loving others as we love ourselves we could manage without man-made Human Rights, Sustainable Development, and socialist plans for Saving the Planet. The Ten Commandments alone encompass all the protection this world needs for Peace, Liberty, Life, Property, Family and Truth. And how much more light, truth, and power has God not given us in Jesus Christ that we might fulfill our part of the Dominion Covenant.


Source: Mark R Kreitzer, God's Plan for Christian South Africa: Dominion and Missions.


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