Winter scene in Lancaster County, PA
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Thursday, March 8, 2018

Old truck in field in Lancaster County PA
Looks like this old Chevrolet pickup we passed sitting out in a field here in Lancaster County needs a pick up!

"A Lesson From Seed-Bearing Plants"

Message summary:
Creation - Of course it's a miracle, wrought by a miracle working, supernatural God! "By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible" (Hebrews 11:3).

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"Then God said, 'Let the land produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds.' And it was so. The land produced vegetation: plants bearing seed according to their kinds and trees bearing fruit with seed in it according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good. And there was evening, and there was morning—the third day" (Genesis 1:11-13).

Burpee logoOur friend, Jesse, works as a stonemason and told me about a job he had recently completed at the Burpee Seed Company, He did concrete work on one of their huge growing houses and commented on how impressive it was to enter a Pennsylvania valley and look down at the large expansive operation early in the morning with all the pink growing lights.

Washington Atlas Burpee
Washington Atlee Burpee founded the company in 1878. It is still based in the Philadelphia area but has seed growing houses throughout the country. Jesse was working at an operation several counties west of us.

For millions of Americans, weary of long winters, nothing signals spring like the arrival of their annual Burpee Catalog in the mailbox. Many of you have planted Burpee seeds in your own gardens over the years as have we.

W. Atlas Burpee was also one of the founders of "The Sunday Breakfast Rescue Mission" in Philadelphia, PA. It was established to provide breakfast and Christian influence on Sunday mornings before church. It's still operating today as a city rescue mission and I appreciate a clear mention of the only Saviour in their mission statement, "Sunday Breakfast Rescue Mission, a non-profit organization, exists to minister in the name of Jesus Christ to the physical and spiritual needs of homeless and disadvantaged people in the Philadelphia area." Their vision aims "to transform lives by the power of God; so that those who have been loved, rescued and trained would become those who love, rescue and train."

So Atlee Burpee was not only interested in planting physical seeds but also spiritual seeds! Likewise, seeds are used both literally and spiritually in the Bible. Considering the contribution of W. Atlas Burpee and his seed business brings to mind the daily Bible text which is the first reference to seeds in the Bible.

One of the common questions often considered regarding our origins is, "What came first, the chicken or the egg?" A derivative of this might be, "What came first, the plant or the seed?" Actually the Holy Scriptures answer each of these questions in the Genesis creation account. The former in Genesis 1:20ff and the latter in our daily text, "The land produced vegetation: plants bearing seed." That is, God created fully mature plants with seeds in them ready to reproduce.

Creation quote by Mark Cahill
This is a significant point for those who accept the Genesis account of creation as a true and reliable record. One of the points made by individuals who have faith in the evolutionary explanation of origins (which does take faith) is that it would take extremely long periods of time for everything to evolve from non-living matter to living (something still not explained but vigorously believed nevertheless). Then from a simple one cell organism to increasingly complex. This all supposedly has taken billions of years.

But according to Scripture God created life at the word of His command in a mature state. When He created the plants and animals they were mature and fully grown, ready to reproduce. At the time of creation "God blessed them and said, 'Be fruitful and increase in number'..." (Genesis 1:22, 28). In regard to plants God said, "Let the land produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds.' And it was so."

Revelation 4:11Of course the skeptic, who is heavily invested in a secular "There is no God" mentality, mocks at this belief. But more distressing is when those who claim to believe in God feel they must concede to the world's belief system on this point. So many worry about appearing unscientific or unintellectual as the world is fond of casting believers in God's account of creation. However in our view believing in the evolutionary explanation for our origins actually takes a lot more faith!

Creation - Of course it's a miracle, wrought by a miracle working, supernatural God! "By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible" (Hebrews 11:3).

So next time you see a seed (probably today), believe, serve and praise the God who created all things.

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Thankful manDaily prayer:  Father, we are so very grateful for the signs of life, color, beauty, shape and functionality that are evident in the plants and vegetation all around us; a result of Your creative handwork on the third day of creation. Though You are Creator, You have made us stewards and caretakers of that which You created. What a joy it is to plant a seed or seedling in the ground and watch as You also provide the carbon dioxide, rain, and sunshine to aid its health and growth. We affirm once again in our writings and prayer that You are the divine Creator of the universe and all things are in submission to Your creative power in accordance to Your will. In the name of Jesus we thank You for these life-sustaining blessings.  Amen.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"Creation Song"  Video    Fernando Ortega

"The Maker"
  Video  Chris August

"Creation Sings
"  Video  All Sons & Daughters

The Sunday Breakfast Rescue Mission The mission was also founded by well-known businessmen John Wanamaker (Wanamaker’s Department Store); John B. Stetson (Stetson Hat Co.); and former Pennsylvania Gov. James Pollock. More than 250 men attended the first meeting at 11th and Wood streets, where they were served a hot cup of coffee and a roll before church.

The Burpee Seed Company

For the geographically curious here is the W. Atlas Burpee seed growing operation where Jesse was working. (Google map)

Floundering intellectualism: As the skeptic denies the creation account he flounders in seeking to make an explanation.

Finally today: Burpee is an interesting surname and there has been some speculation that it's related to the burpless cucumber which is not the case. However it does remind me of a story I heard many years ago that may or may not be true. A missionary to Africa named Bertha Belch was going to be the special missions speaker in a local church and they advertised the service in the local paper with the headline, "Come Hear Bertha Belch All The Way From Africa"

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.

Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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