Text: Romans 1:20,21
Props: a poster of autumn leaves or a picture of Natural Bridge, Virginia, USA.
Summary: Jesus uses his creation as a witness to unbelievers.
For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. – Romans 1:20,21
Look what I brought with me today. These are some leaves that I found on a trip to Natural Bridge, VA. Over in the mountains during this time of year the countryside has been painted by God with beautiful colored leaves: some yellow, some orange or red, and some brown and gold. We also saw this natural bridge which was carved out of rock by the great flood waters as they drained off the earth into underground caverns.
What season of the year do these leaves tell us it is? Autumn (or fall). Have you ever wondered why trees loose their leaves? I think it is because Jesus wants to give them a new pair of clothes and they need a rest from holding on to them all year long. Have you ever tried to hold on to a leaf for a whole year? Do you think you would get tired, too? Jesus knows we get tired, so he gave us a day of rest. We use that day to rest and thank God for all he has done for us.
Now, have you ever thought about all the people who use the day of rest to do things for themselves, and who never go to church? How does Jesus tell them about himself? He can use you to tell them, but even if they won’t listen to you, he has another way. He tells them through his own creation. Listen to the scripture. (Read Romans 1:20,21.)
Look at the picture of the natural bridge. Anyone who sees such a wondrous place comes away with a feeling of amazement. Only God in his power could carve out such a place with water. So it reminds them of God’s judgment (Noah’s ark and the flood) on those who do not recognize that Jesus is God, so they do not have an excuse.
Think about the leaves for a moment. If we wore the same pair of clothes all year what a mess they would be! Do you see the dirt on the leaves and the holes eaten in them by bugs? Jesus gave us seasons to remind us of the renewal we need. There are times we need to let go of the bad habits or things we have done. That is called repentance. Then Jesus can grow new habits on us, just as he grows new leaves on trees in springtime. Jesus uses him own creation to tell us about himself.
Let’s be sure to thank Jesus for the beauty of all he made today.
©1997 by Jim Kerlin. All rights reserved.