Sunday, January 20, 2008

CREATION: “Ah ha!”

"In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth."
Genesis 1:1
They call it the “Ah ha!” experience. Kathy Hummel, media and production director of the National Scrabble Association says, “It comes from creating something out of nothing, you stick your hand in a bag and pull out seven random letters and build words.” The game is known as Scrabble.

In the beginning, Alfred Mosher Butts, an unemployed architect from Poughkeepsie, NY, decided he wanted to create a new game. He analyzed many games and found they fell into three categories: number games, such as dice and bingo; move games, such as chess and checkers; and word games, such as anagrams.

Wanting to create a game which would use both chance and skill, Butts combined features of anagrams and crossword puzzles. First called Lexiko, the game was later called Criss Cross Words. To decide on a letter distribution, Butts calculated the letter frequency on the front page of The New York Times.

In the depths of the Depression, Butts and entrepreneur James Brunot rented an abandoned schoolhouse in Dodgington, Conn., and turned out twelve games an hour, stamping letters on the wooden tiles.

In 1949, Brunot made 2,400 sets and lost $450. Then in the early 1950s, as legend has it, the president of Macy's discovered Scrabble on vacation and ordered some for the store. Within a year, demand was higher than supply and Scrabble had to be rationed to stores. Recently, Hasbro began selling Scrabble on CD.

I doubt it would be good to call the creation an “Ah ha” experience but, “In the beginning God” also created something out of nothing [we call it ex nihilo; Romans 4:17]. However, I believe if you and I had been there it might fairly be called the “Oh, my!” experience.

God didn’t have to reach into a bag to do it, either; He simple spoke it into existence [Hebrews 11:3]. But He did have trouble selling the idea … and still does. You see saved-man lives by faith and not by sight [2 Corinthians 5:7], while the unsaved insist on “seeing is believing.”

Also in the beginning was the Word. Only this Word was not made up of seven letters, it was made up of the Son of God [John 1:14]. And no one had to go to the front page of anything to see which words should be used in composing His Word.

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