Session 5: God the Creator!
Lord, you have been our dwelling place throughout all generations. Before the mountains were born or you brought forth the whole world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God. Psalm 90:1-2
Key personalities: God and the formation of matter, time and space out of nothing.
Can you imagine a more profound opening than, in the beginning, to start an epic adventure?
The theme is that God is LORD GOD. He is solely unique and there is only One. He is the omnipotent, eternal Creator who brought all things into existence while He always exists with no beginning or end. God has unique 'being' and absolute control, being pre-existing in nature and over creation, and He is our final authority and object of faith and practice. He has eternal wisdom and purpose that was before the creation of matter and life. This Book of Genesis covers the first two thousand years of human existence and perhaps billions of years of space time.
The first eleven chapters of the first book in the Bible are beyond epic! Genesis is a history of the primeval activity of the universe and the creation of everything. We have five main parts: 1. a prologue (1:1-2:3.), 2. a close-up of what was created humanity-- (2:4-4:26), 3. Adam and Eve (5:1-6:6), 4. the spread of the population of humanity and its corruption and God redeeming Noah and his family, (6:9-9:29) and finally, 5. the corruption of Noah's family and the continuance of sin and the intertwining work of God in our midst (10:1-11:9), (Job 38; Psalm 8; 104; 136:1-9; Prov. 8:22-31).
We have a Great Personal God who has always existed. He is eternal and Majestic. He is Perfect and Holy. He thinks, He feels, He names and He acts, and He is the Divine Artist of power and control who crafts a majestic epic mural of creation in absolute perfection; the universe is His canvas. He is involved in all, and He moves through time and space in absolute sovereignty and precision. All one needs to do is look to the sky, look to a microscope or telescope and see the majestic fingerprint of God, if only one looks. He has always existed and exists everywhere, and He is perfect. He is the Creator. He is not an impersonal or fictitious force like the Star Wars force nor is He an all inclusive like pantheism; rather, He is involved and creates the universe, then created us to rule over the world to be His stewards of care to the environment and all the He has made.
Key Happenings: In the beginning
We are told that God created the universe--all that is and will be--in six days; all is brought into existence. Then, He took a day off.
- Vs. 1:1 shows is a God that is eternal, always was and is, who fulfills His purpose and plan. He is Holy and worthy of our sacrificial worship and praise (Psalm 33:6-9; Col. 1:16-17; Rev. 4:11).
- We are given a depiction of the majesty and character of God. He is real. He is Truth. He speaks. There are no other gods. He is an eternal Person. His name is in a plural form, meaning divine majesty and reverence and there is more than what we see and know. He is not a mere philosophical idea or theory. He is real (Deut. 4:29; Psalm 19:1-3; Isa. 40:21-28; 43:10; John 1:1; Rom. 1:20; Col. 1:17; Heb. 11:1-22).
- Only God creates! All that is, all that will be is formed and shaped by God. God is able to make matter out of nothing; science can only manipulate what has already been made by God.
- All that exists is His, made by him and for Him, and of creation points to Christ's supremacy predating time and history. He is the Eternal Creator. He has always been and always will be, in contrast to the universe which was created. Christ is displayed throughout the universe. However, the universe is not God; that would be pantheism (Psalm. 33:6; 102: 25-27; Prov. 8:30; Rom. 1:18-20; Heb. 1:1-4; 11:3).
- Genesis points to Christ! God is the One who sustaining all things and upholds the universe . Christ is the One who not only made the universe, He holds it all together (Col. 1:17; Heb. 12:26-28; 2 Pet. 3:4-7).
- What is Sovereignty and why is it so important? This is the nature of God: that He is The Supreme Creator and has total providence and absolute authority as ruler of all that exists in the totality of creation. He is immutable; this means He is unchallengeable, fully, absolutely, and totally in control! Whether or not we acknowledge Him, His nature remains the same! Whether or not we acknowledge Him, we are dependent upon Him for every breath and every step we take ( Psalm 50:1; 90:2; 115:3; Isa. 40:15; 45:9; 46:10; Dan.4:35; Rom. 9:20-21; 2 Cor. 6:18; Eph. 1:11; Col. 1; 1 Tim. 6:15 )!
- Vs 1:26 Shows us more of a glimpse of the plurality of God--He is the Trinity, One God, with Three distinct natures or Persons in communion with One another (Gen. 11:7; Isa. 6:8; Mat. 3:16-17; 28:19; John 17:24; James 2:19).
- Vs. 1:31, shows us that all is good. Before the fall that is, by Gods decree and by man's approval, all that was originally made is good.
God's creation is of order and wonder, is practical and beyond complex; all is formed in logical order of the necessity as each one begets the needs of the other to function. First was nothing, emptiness, with only God's Spirit was about. Then, He spoke into exists, Day one, let there be light and energy comes--a must before anything else can arrive on the scene without destruction or for its function. The separation occurs, a prime principle of Gods creating powers, making heaven and earth, a vault of division to the light of day and night--a necessity for stars and planets to form and for life to function. The separation of water by sea and water by moisture and clouds in the air, a division of land and sky, as our planet earth is formed. The seasons come, and life in the sea comes before life on the land, as the zoological categories of 'kinds,' just as science has observed. All that is, is in order to exact factual science fact, not mysticism or fable. Finally, humanity is created (more on this in our next lesson).
What about evolution? This work is an introduction to what is in the Bible, not an apologetic. Yet, we must know there is a battle between perceived science of what is purely observed and what is only taken by faith. Yet, all that is in the Bible can be backed by science, and science can't truthfully quantify how matter came from nothing, or how a proton can move from 0 to 186k miles an hour to 0, or how thought works, love, even the complexities of microbiology or how subatomic partials work. Real science is a matter of proof and thus is limited. Both science and faith call us to test and trust in a system that is not totally tangible in reality, yet visible in observation. A microscope will show the details of a cell and the transforming power of the Gospel changes a person--both are for all to see. It comes down to what we accept, and as Christians, we can accept science as what is proven, and evolution has no transitional evidences or substantial proof. Yet the greatest scientists have been God fearing Christians who observe God's wonders.
The Hebrew word for the day is Yom--time period, not necessarily a literal day. So the great debate: Did God create the entire universe in six literal twenty-four hour periods or in billions of years? He certainly could have done it in six nanoseconds, He is God. However, the Hebrew text tells the narrative as periods, meaning they could be one day, many thousands of years, or millions and billions of years. Why does this not matter? Because God is beyond time and space; His view of time is not our view. 2 Peter, 3:8 tells us, a day is like a thousand years, this means God lives outside of space and time and is not governed by our physical or temporal laws of physics or humanity or confined to our limited reason or the creation He made . So, He lives outside of space time and we live within it and are bound to it.
For God, time is totally relative and in the scope of eternity. God's view and perspective of things is not our view and the converse thereof. This is an aspect of His sovereignty. When we fuss over whether God created the universe in a day or a billion years, we miss the point and waste our time in meaningless arguments. Yes, the argument from science can be made at both ends. Archeology and astronomy are used as the proof of an old earth and the case can be made against it, too. The point? All this is fascinating and invigorating and worthy of debate. But, let's not forget that God purposely made you and I, all that is and wants to be involved in us as He is in the universe (Psalm 90:4).
The Holy Grail in physics is the "unified field theory," a formula that states how all disciplines of physics and physical law, all forces in nature from the subatomic particles to mega galaxies and space time, are unified in a cohesive mathematical formula. The answer is in Genesis!
A character of God is His providence, in which He acts in His free will. He does not have to create or give us life, yet He does. He does not have to be involved, yet He is. God is not incomplete without us or creation; we are only complete when we are in Christ (Psalm 33:9; Col. 1:16-17; 1 Thess. 2:13; Rev. 4:11).
God is indeed involved and relates to us and what us to relate to Him. The Israelites and pagans struggled with how to relate to God, by building shrines, so one can come to worship and see what God-or a god has done here. The worship of the God of the place verses the place of the God. The difference? One honors the past and becomes complainant, one honors to God who is still here moving amongst us to move for Him. Being consumed over what God has been and touched over Who God is and what God inhabits all of the universe. The devotion of pagans and the spiritual immature is about what we can craft and control, instead the reality is that God is in control. Like shrines and relics of old, to church buildings and ministry past accomplishments, resting on laurels and not being a continuing kingdom impact today. We attend where God has been, not go where God tells us to go and be.
God is sovereign and in control! God's mighty hand was in the environment and in humanity before the beginning of time, and continues today and on to eternity. He will judge the quick (alive) and the dead (Acts 10:42; 1 Peter 4:5; The Apostolic Creed). He made the universe; He made you for a plan and a purpose. You are no mistake; therefore, you are wanted and have a destiny. Thus, we are called to realize that and not let false teachers, scoffers, and/or connivers distract us from seeing Christ and applying His Lordship to our lives.
Key Takeaway: God's ability and authority to command, create, and be Lord must be not only observed but worshiped. By God's own Word, the universe was created out of nothing. We were created and then we fell; we are queued to be saved. God is unchangeable. This is o ur Great Comfort that God is, indeed, in Control and we can trust and obey Him! He is a God of involvement and action. He is not passive as the deists teach; there is no reason or need to doubt God. This means we are totally dependent on Him for life and liberty, for faith and even the air we breathe (Gen. 1:1-30; Psalm 33:6-9; Heb. 11:3).
Questions to Ponder
1. What are some of the things God has called into existence you enjoy and why? What are some of the things God has called into existence you do not enjoy and why?
2. He is indeed involved in creation and with us. How does the activity of God make you confident in your faith?
3. Notice the personal pronouns God uses, I and you, what does that mean? Consider, He is personal and involved and caring.
4. How does it make you feel that God the Creator is not some impersonal force like the Star Wars force?
5. What does it mean to you that God is to be worshiped and that He is Sovereign?
6. How does the fact that you are no mistake; you are wanted and have a destiny motivate you for life and faith? How would this affect your church?
7. Why do some Christians negate the Old Testament? How and why is this God the One who we worship?
8. Why is God's sovereignty so important?
9. What does God's work in creation show you, His character? His care? His....? Because God fulfill His purpose and plan, I can respond by?
10. What are the directives and call given to us do you see in this passage? (look at Gen. 1:28-30)
11. How must we respond to this passage?
12. As all things point us to that He is Worthy, what can you do better to know worship and glorify the Creator?
© 2012 R. J. Krejcir, Ph.D., Into Thy Word Ministries www.intothyword.org