In the beginning God (Gen. 1:1)
If we separate the first four words of Genesis 1:1 from the rest of the verse, they form a sort of motto for all of life. They say, God first.
We find this motto suggested in the first commandment, Thou shalt have no other gods before me. No one and nothing must take the place of the true and living God.
We find it taught in the story of Elijah and the widow who had only enough flour and oil left to make one final loaf for her son and herself (1 Kings 17:12). Surprisingly Elijah said, Make me a little loaf first. Though this might sound like gross selfishness, it wasnt. Elijah was a representative of God. He was saying, Just put God first and your supply of the necessities of life will never fail.
The Lord Jesus taught the same thing centuries later on the Mount when He said, Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you (Matt. 6:33). The central priority of life is the kingdom of God and His righteousness.
Again the Savior asserted His prior claim in Luke 14:26, If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. Christ must have first place.
But how do we put God first? We have our family to care for. We have our secular employment to think of. We have a multitude of duties crying out for our time and resources. We put God first by loving Him with a love beside which all other loves are hatred in comparison. By using all material things as a trust from Him, holding onto only those things which can be used in connection with His kingdom. By giving top priority to matters of eternal consequences, remembering that even good things are sometimes enemies of the best.
Mans best interests lie in a right relationship with God. The right relationship is when God is given first place. Even when man puts God first, he will have some problems, but he will find fulfilment in life. But when he puts God second, he will have nothing but problemsand a miserable existence.
SI Moderator - Greg Gordon