The Bible gives some interesting insights into cities. Cities are the expression of human achievement and power. In early civilisation the people built Ziggurats to honour their building prowess as well as worship other gods. Even so today, the concrete jungles of ‘world class cities’ , is to the praise of man, not the praise of God. Many people across the earth are unwilling to live in the world that God made. Some are afraid of evil spirits and so congregate in villages for protection. Others are afraid of the animals of nature. Many do not appreciate the beauty and value of the world that God made.
God has been one for making gardens. First the garden of Eden and last the garden in the heavenly Jerusalem. He invites all to study and admire and enjoy the wonders of His craftsmanship. Look into the face of a flower and smell the fragrance along with the marvellous ability to reproduce itself – who wrote the DNA code? – God. Let us give Him the glory!
History has many records of God interrupting the progress of city building. At the tower of Babel (Genesis 11), God confused the language of the people so that their idolatrous city building might stop. Jerusalem was laid waste because of an idol in the temple. Again Jerusalem was destroyed by the Romans because the people rejected Jesus the Messiah. We could consider the overthrow of Rome , ancient Babylon, Pompey etc .
According to the book of Revelation, it will be a day of great calamity when the present Babylonian system of religion and commerce is destroyed.
What can we learn from history?
God made gardens to be places for us to enjoy, but more, places where we can draw closer to God. It was in the first garden that God came to Adam in the cool of the day, seeking fellowship with the man He had made. Even so today, it is one of the best places to settle the soul and find communion with God. The Lord Jesus Himself went away alone to the mountain to be alone with God.
God will build a city where the glory will be to God. Now God is encouraging believers to fellowship together, but the Bible records God scattering the believers from Jerusalem to the uttermost parts of the earth. He did not intend ‘mega churches’. Rather like a garden, He intended the Christians to reproduce like the flowers. The seeds being scattered far and wide, causing the garden to flourish.
Something very sad is happening in Australia. The younger generation are discouraged from stepping out into the world of nature and instead are given screens, games, computers etc. Thus the media, the entertainment gurus control their thinking and ultimately their lives. It is wise for parents to ensure that children have plentiful exposure to God’s world. And learn to live in harmony with it.
So much of the Bible is related to the ‘world of agriculture’ – eg sheep with shepherds, sowing seeds, harvest festivals, etc. In this ‘ world ‘ we can learn so much about things as God intended .eg resurrection in the death and springing forth of a seed, quality of character in the structure of a tree, reproduction of each species. Looking up we are caused to consider how small we really are compared to the sun, moon and stars. Watching the weather , teaches us how dependant we are on the God who controls the much needed rain.
Let us then, consider the works of God and give HIM the honour and the glory.