Summary: Genesis 1:1 is the foundation of our faith and understanding of God. Here's why...
“In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” Genesis 1:1 ESV[i] is a straightforward account of the origins of the universe. This verse is so simple, a child can understand it. Yet in all its simplicity and clarity, men in recent centuries have struggled to accept this simple verse by faith. By its very position as the first verse of God’s inspired word, Genesis 1:1 is the cornerstone of the foundation of our faith and our understanding of God. God’s claim of worship, sovereignty and power are directly linked to the truthfulness of Genesis 1:1. If God did not create the heavens and the earth as recorded in Genesis 1-3 then He has no power and neither is He worthy of worship. In this lesson we will explore the implication of “In the beginning, God…”
IN THE BEGINNING, GOD EXPLAINS OUR ORIGINS:
Genesis 1:1 is not an ambiguous statement. It is here that God explains how everything was supernaturally created in six days. There is no hint of a natural process involved in God’s creation. The Psalmist affirms the truth of Genesis 1:1 when he said, “By the word of the Lord the heavens were mad and by the breath of His mouth all their host” (Psalm 33:6). The Hebrew writer also reminds us that God spoke all things into existence saying, “By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible” (Hebrews 11:3). These two passages confirm for us the truth of Genesis 1:1 that God spoke the universe into existence by the word of His mouth.
Yet some Christians feel the need for science to explain the creation account; however, science can add nothing to God’s explanation of our origin. Think back with me to your science classes. What two things were we taught that science needs in order to be legitimate? Observation and verification through repetition. Science can do neither of those two things when it comes to the creation. Scientists can observe and verify what exists now, but how something exists now cannot explain the miracle that took place to create it. Let me explain.
Let’s say you were there the day Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead (John 11:38-44) and you wanted to explain how Jesus brought Lazarus back from the dead. What would you do? I guess the place to start would be to look inside of him, take some DNA samples, maybe do some blood work, or do a brain scan. You would want to observe his daily routine, from how much he slept to what he ate; everything he did would need to be documented. Our list could go on and on, but there is one problem; nothing that we would learn from studying Lazarus’ post-death life (or pre-death life for that matter) would shed any light on how Jesus raised him from the dead. The reason is, a miracle cannot be explained; or else it would not be a miracle. Just as science could not explain how Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead, it offers no help in explaining the origins of the universe, only Genesis 1:1 can provide that explanation. It is a mistake to think that the man-made theories of creation science, intelligent design, or day-age theory can add anything to God’s authoritative account of our creation beginning with Genesis 1:1.
To those who would seek to espouse their “so called knowledge” God says, “Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell Me, if you have understanding. Who determined its measurements – surely you know!” (Job 38:4-5). All who would seek to add science to the creation account of Genesis 1:1 would do well to pay special attention to Job 38-40:5. In the context of dressing down the thinks-he-knows-it-all Job, God crushes the pride of scientific understanding regarding the origins of the universe by rhetorically asking that only God can answer. Many would do well to follow Job’s example when he answered God by saying, “Behold, I am of small account; what shall I answer You? I lay my hand on my mouth. I have spoken once, and I will not answer; twice, but I will proceed no further” (Job 40:4-5).
Rather than looking to science, whether it is the atheistic version, or its deistic adaptation, as an aid to explaining our origins, let us, by faith (Hebrews 11:3) accept God’s authoritative explanation of our origin; “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” Nothing more needs to be said, God has given us a wonderful, awe-inspiring explanation of our origin. To seek to add anything else to Genesis 1:1 is to rob God of glory, honor and power.
IN THE BEGINNING, GOD TEST OUR FAITH: