“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth” (Gen. 1:1).
There are many deep truths in that simple text, one of the most profound being that the universe itself had a beginning. While that idea might not seem so radical to us today, it goes against the long-held belief in an eternally existing creation. Not until the twentieth century, when the “Big Bang” model of origins took hold, did the notion that the universe had a beginning gain general acceptance. Until then many believed that it had always existed. Many people resisted the concept of the universe having been created because that implied some sort of Creator. (In fact, the name “Big Bang” was intended to mock the notion of a created universe.) But the evidence that the universe had a beginning has become so strong that nearly all scientists have accepted it, at least for now (scientific views, even those once deemed sacrosanct, are often changed or refuted).
Read Hebrews 11:3. What does that tell us about God and the creation of the universe?
As with Genesis 1:1, Hebrews 11:3 is full of mystery and things that are unexplainable by our present knowledge. Yet, the text does seem to tell us that the universe was not formed from pre-existing matter. The universe was created by the power of God’s Word; that is, both matter and energy were brought into existence by God’s power.
Creation from nothing is known as creation ex nihilo. We often credit humans with the creation of various things, but humans are incapable of creating from nothing. We can change the form of pre-existing matter, but we have no power to create ex nihilo. Only the supernatural power of God can do that. This is one of the most dramatic differences between God and humans and reminds us that our very existence depends on the Creator.
In fact, the verb created in Genesis 1:1 comes from a Hebrew root word that is used only in reference to the creative activity of God. Only God, not humans, can do that kind of creating (see also Rom. 4:17).
Why is a supernatural Creator, One who exists above and beyond the creation, the only logical explanation for the Creation? Bring your answer to class on Sabbath.