A sign in the local textile mill read, “When your thread becomes tangled, call the foreman.” A young woman was new on the job. Her thread became tangled and she thought, “I will just straighten this out myself, after all how difficult can it be.” She tried but in vain; the situation worsened. Finally she called the foreman. “I did the best I could,” she told her boss. “No you didn’t” he quickly remarked. “To do the best, you should have called me.”
The above illustration is a very vivid and yet practical picture of man’s relationship to God and man’s attempts to save himself independently from God. From the beginning of time man’s dependence upon God has been both established and well chronicled. Moses wrote that “in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is” (Ex 20:11). The crown of God’s creation was humanity. In fact, Luke referred to Adam, not simply as a created being but rather “the son of God” (Luke 3:38). For the crown of His creation, for His offspring, God provided all that was needed.
Placing man in Eden God insured that all of man’s provisions were met. The beauty of nature, the need for nourishment, the gift of life and the ability to demonstrate his love for God was all provided for Adam in the Garden (Gen. 2:9) Even companionship, a desire inherent in man was wholly satisfied by his Creator (Gen. 2:18).
Nevertheless, seeking to do what seemed best in his eyes man followed his own path and early discovered his dependence on God: “And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat. And the eyes of them both were opened” (Gen. 3:6-7). Man’s eyes were opened, not simply to the fact that he was naked, neither was it purely to the power of temptation and the horribleness of sin, but also to his dependence upon God!
It is worthy to note and greatly to be emphasized that man’s dependence upon God is both physical and spiritual in nature. To the multitudes, Jesus declared that it is God who “maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust” (Matt. 5:45). To all humanity, just and unjust, God provides ALL physical blessings. The Christian farmer does not receive the desired amount of rain on his crops while the unbelieving farmer loses his living to the scorching earth. The Christian mother does not spend her day happily passing the time without concern for the health and wellness of her child while the unbelieving mother diligently searches for cures and preventions of all manner of illnesses for her young. All things needful for physical life, growth, and good health are provided for all man by his Creator regardless of his spiritual state!
The spiritual blessings which God has provided for man, like those physical blessings are offered to all of His offspring. These blessings, however, are obtained and maintained only by those who lovingly, humbly, willfully, and faithfully submit to God’s will. Paul instructed the Ephesians that all spiritual blessings are “in Christ” (Eph. 1:3). To be in Christ one must be “baptized into Jesus Christ” (Rom. 6:3); “born of the water and of the Spirit” (John 3:5); sanctified and cleansed “with the washing of water by the word” (Eph. 5:26); “born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever” (1 Pet. 1:23). Being born again man becomes the spiritual offspring of God and gains access to all spiritual blessings which God by His grace provides. Peter said the way: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead” (1 Pet. 1:3).
The inspired words of the sorrowful seer which highlight humanity’s dependence upon his Creator still ring true today: “O LORD, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps” (Jer. 10:23). Truly God is needed by His offspring!