It looks like the ideas are starting to come together. Across the years from the early fifth century to the mid nineteenth century a way of looking at Creation echoes over and over. From the pen of the early fifth century theologian and teacher Pelagius comes this fragment written to a friend.
Look at the animals roaming the forest: God’s spirit dwells within them.
Look at the birds flying across the sky: God’s spirit dwells within them.
Look at the tiny insects crawling in the grass: God’s spirit dwells within them.
Look at the fish in the river and sea: God’s spirit dwells within them.
There is no creature on earth in whom God is absent….When God pronounced that His creation was good it was not only that his hand had fashioned every creature; it was that His breath had brought every creature to life. Look too at the great trees of the forest; look at the wildflowers and the grass in the fields; look even at your crops. God’s spirit is present within all plants as well. The presence of God’s spirit in all living things is what makes them beautiful; and if we look with God’s eyes nothing on the earth is ugly.
More than a thousand years later, and with a little less poetry is this fragment from William Penn, the Quaker.
If we better studied and understood God’s creation, this would do a great deal to caution and direct us in our use of it. For how could we find the impudence to abuse the world if we were seeing the great Creator stare us in the face through each and every part of it? —