Record keeping and God’s power are not exclusive. The Bible itself is a report of God’s activity containing covenants, genealogies, and other statistics and specific records of events kept to demonstrate His faithfulness and power.
From the first chapters in Genesis, we find God keeping records of His power at work — what He did on day one through day seven of creation and how He looked back at each day’s activities to assess what He had done. From these records and other accounts of His creation through Scripture, we learn:
- God keeps track of what He has made.
Lift up your eyes and look to the heavens: Who created all these? He who brings out the starry host one by one and calls forth each of them by name. Because of his great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing. (Isa. 40:26)
- Based on these records we can conclude that nothing is too hard for Him.
Ah, Sovereign LORD, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for you. (Jer. 32:17)
- We are without excuse to properly respond since we not only can review records of His power but can see it in the outcome.
For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities – his eternal power and divine nature – have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse. (Rom. 1:20)
Continuing on in the opening books of the Bible we read reports of God’s power demonstrated on behalf of His people — plagues in Egypt, the parting of the sea, provision of manna from heaven, water from a rock, etc. From these records of God’s work on behalf of His people, we learn:
- He is a God worth following and worshiping. Why bow to others?
O Lord GOD, You have begun to show Your servant Your greatness and Your strong hand; for what god is there in heaven or on earth who can do such works and mighty acts as Yours? (Deut. 3:24)
Has any god ever tried to take for himself one nation out of another nation, by testings, by signs and wonders, by war, by a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, or by great and awesome deeds, like all the things the LORD your God did for you in Egypt before your very eyes? You were shown these things so that you might know that the LORD is God; besides him there is no other. (Deut. 4:34-35)
But the LORD, who brought you up out of Egypt with mighty power and outstretched arm, is the one you must worship. To him you shall bow down and to him offer sacrifices. (2 Kings 17:36)
And, we also find many chapters with genealogical records, detailed records of the laws, offerings, festivals, construction of the tabernacle and temple, wars, etc. From His dealings with His people, we learn:
- Since He is God and they are His people He has the right to expect them to conform to Him and not the other way around.
For you are a people holy to the LORD your God. The LORD your God has chosen you out of all the peoples on the face of the earth to be his people, his treasured possession. (Deut. 7:6)
- He is a faithful God, capable of bringing about what He promised.
He is the one you praise; he is your God, who performed for you those great and awesome wonders you saw with your own eyes. Your ancestors who went down into Egypt were seventy in all, and now the LORD your God has made you as numerous as the stars in the sky. (Deut. 10:21-22)
And the LORD has declared this day that you are his people, his treasured possession as he promised, and that you are to keep all his commands. (Deut. 26:18)
Into the New Testament we come across genealogical records of Jesus who was born of a virgin. We find records of the family lines of those He made His surrogate parents, tracing back to the lineage of Abraham and David, showing that nothing is impossible with God (Lk. 1:34-37). From these records we learn:
- God is powerful enough to fulfill His promises, to do what He said He would do.
I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you. (Gen. 12:3)
Of the greatness of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the LORD Almighty will accomplish this. (Isa. 9:7)
The days are coming,” declares the LORD, “when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, a King who will reign wisely and do what is just and right in the land. (Jer. 23:5)
This is the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah the son of David, the son of Abraham: (Matt. 1:1)
Some accounts of miraculous displays of Jesus’ power record numbers such as the small quantity of loaves and fish that fed a multitude of 4000 and later 5000 men plus women and children and how much was left over after all were fed. From these records we learn:
- God is powerful enough to do great things with little resources.
Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you. (Matt. 17:20)
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. (Eph. 3:20-21)
Yes, the power of God and record keeping go hand in hand throughout the Bible. From that we can learn lessons about our own record keeping:
- We should not view record keeping and faith in God as exclusive. He used records as reminders of what He has done and what He will do to help us know that we can rely on Him.
- Yet, we should not keep records merely for the sake of having records. God kept records for us to learn from them. Our record keeping should therefore be purposeful.
- Records are most helpful when we make them more about what God has done or is doing in our midst than our own accomplishments. Remember we are a continuation of His might at work, like letters from Christ “written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God (2 Cor. 3:3).
- We shouldn’t be limited by the data in front of us for our Almighty God is capable of doing far more than what seems humanly possible.