Summary: Where did we come from? Do our lives matter? Is this all that there is? Our passage answers such questions.
Genesis 1:1-31 God, Man, and Nature
1/10/16 D. Marion Clark
Where did we come from?
Do our lives matter?
Is this all that there is?
Our passage this morning answers such questions.
God the Creator
In the beginning,
The beginning of Scripture takes us to the beginning of everything. Where did we come from? Where did everything come from? The answer is, from God.
If God alone is in the beginning, what do we ascertain from this fact? God is eternal. Unlike us and everything else, God has no beginning. God is self-sufficient. Everything owes its existence to something/someone else. God owes his existence to no one. Furthermore, God needs nothing and no one to maintain his existence. He needs nothing outside of himself to sustain him, to make his life meaningful, more complete, or happier. Isaiah speaks of this:
Have you not known? Have you not heard?
The LORD is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint or grow weary;
his understanding is unsearchable (40:28).
We grow faint without sufficient food or drink. We grow weary from too much activity. We have limitations with our bodies and our minds. But God of no beginnings never becomes weak, never tires, never is without complete knowledge.
There is no beginning for God, but God begins everything. God is the Creator.
God created the heavens and the earth.
Where did everything come from? From the one God. There is no other creator; there is no other god. Again, listen to God speaking through Isaiah.
Thus says the LORD, the King of Israel
and his Redeemer, the LORD of hosts:
“I am the first and I am the last;
besides me there is no god….
Is there a God besides me?
There is no Rock; I know not any.”
Thus says the LORD, your Redeemer,
who formed you from the womb:
“I am the LORD, who made all things,
who alone stretched out the heavens,
who spread out the earth by myself… (44:6, 8, 24).
Let’s now consider a phrase that occurs throughout our text: And God said, “Let…”
3 And God said, “Let there be light…
And God said, “Let there be an expanse in the midst of the waters
9 And God said, “Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together into one place
11 And God said, “Let the earth sprout vegetation
14 And God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens day.
20 And God said, “Let the waters swarm with swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the expanse of the heavens.”
24 And God said, “Let the earth bring forth living creatures according to their kinds
Moses highlights the activity of God speaking and specifically of God speaking forth creation. He could have written, “God determined that…” or “God made/created…” Instead he introduces each activity of creation with the spoken word of God.
This idea that the word of God spoken has power is replayed in Scripture.
By the word of the LORD the heavens were made,
and by the breath of his mouth all their host.
7 He gathers the waters of the sea as a heap;
he puts the deeps in storehouses.
8 Let all the earth fear the LORD;
let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him!
9 For he spoke, and it came to be;
he commanded, and it stood firm (Psalm 33:6-9).
“For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven
and do not return there but water the earth,
making it bring forth and sprout,
giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater,
11 so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth;
it shall not return to me empty,
but it shall accomplish that which I purpose,
and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it (Isaiah 55:10-11).
God the Creator speaks and creation comes into being. God the Ruler speaks and his will is carried out. Such is the almighty power of God.
One other thing that we see in this presentation of the Creator God is that he is outside of his creation. Creation is not an extension of God. Furthermore, God is above creation. To put it another way, God remains in control of his creation. He is not Frankenstein (the name of the doctor-creator, not the monster) who fashions a creature and then loses control over it. This is the message of Isaiah 40:26:
Lift up your eyes on high and see:
who created these?
He who brings out their host by number,
calling them all by name,
by the greatness of his might,
and because he is strong in power
not one is missing.