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God's perfection and changing creation





I think I understand your question to be something in the order that since
God is perfect then shouldn't things have been right from the first such
that the changes we see in history would not have to occur?

First we must establish definitions. What is meant by perfection? When God
made man He declared it to be "very good" (Gen 1:31).  Only in the
intermediate state, when man did not have a mate, did God declare something
to be "not good" (Gen 2:18).  What does the statement of Genesis 1:31 mean?
It seems to me that that the world was perfect.  However, we see that God
tested man with the temptation of the tree of knowledge of good and evil.
Because Adam and his wife were capable of being tested does this indicate
non-perfection? No.  It only means that he has been given free will.  For
example, Satan is called "perfect" in Ezekiel 28; yet Satan fell via his
pride and is now set for eternal damnation.  God's definition of perfection
then does not match what many of us think of as perfection.  In God's
definition being perfect does not mean being beyond failure, as we see in
the case of man's and Satan's falls. I think in God's eyes being "very good"
and "perfect" includes free will and the freedom to "spill milk."

There is another item in the definition of "perfect" to consider.  Hebrews
5:9 states that Christ was "made perfect."  This seems to be out of sync
with God being perfect from eternity.  However, the Greek word used here is
'teleioo' (NT:5048), which means to "accomplish, complete, or fulfill." Adam
Clarke says that it "signifies to have obtained the goal; to have ended
one's labour, and enjoyed the fruits of it."  Christ completed the
requirements of being our Savior by being a sin offering for us and rising
from the dead.

Further, perhaps you are making the assumption that such things as
weaknesses indicate that perfection is not present.  Paul heavily implies
that having weaknesses are part of the perfection of God:
"And He has said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for power is
perfected in weakness.' Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my
weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. Therefore I am well
content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions,
with difficulties, for Christ's sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong."
(2 Cor 12:9-10).
God places in each of us weaknesses so that we will not be self-reliant.
For example, when Adam did not have a mate God declared this as "not good"
(Gen 2:18).  Adam needed a suitable helper and God provided him with a wife.
  Even if Adam had not fallen he still would have needed food, air, water,
and other things in order to survive.  These are the weaknesses that God
built into Adam.  And it is a mistake to think that we will be completely
self-reliant beings in the new heavens and new earth in our resurrected
bodies who can exist independently of the environments of the new heavens
and new earth.  God will place in us "weaknesses" that make us reliant upon
His new created order just as we have weaknesses now that make us reliant
upon the present created order.

There is yet one more aspect concerning time. Since man is created in God's
image man thus reflects characteristics of God. These characteristics
include such things as His emotions.  For example, God loves and feels
sadness.  So we, in turn, are capable of these things.  Let's examine humor
as one of these characteristics.  Humor, as we humans experience it, is
almost always associated with what we think of as a "twist."  The twist is
not funny if it has to be explained.  The element of surprise is essential
for the twist.  Another aspect of humor is our shortcomings.  Our
limitations of knowledge and ability allow us to experience humor.  But how
does God experience humor in eternity?  After all, He already knows all the
punch lines.  Humor for God must exist at a level independent of time and
knowledge and in a way we really can't comprehend.  However, God has allowed
us to experience something of His characteristic by giving us a sense of
humor.  Our experience of this characteristic is dependant upon things that
God is not dependant upon for Him to experience it though.  I mean, for
instance, that we experience life dependent upon food, water, air, etc.  But
God experiences life without these dependencies.  Therefore, our experiences
of God's characteristics cannot be experienced by us as directly as He can
because we are necessarily limited.  We experience humor, like God does, but
He had to allow us to experience it in a manner feasible to limited
creatures who are necessarily incapable of the infinite nature of God.
Thus, some changes over time are necessary for us to experience some aspects
of the nature of God that we would, as finite beings, be incapable of