Editor’s Note: On October 13, 2012, I will go before a council of pastors and attempt to pass an ordination exam. As a way of preparing for the examination I wanted to sharpen my articulation of major Christian doctrine and be able to clearly, succinctly state what I believe and why. I’m self imposing a five-hundred word limit and not allowing myself to reference any outside material except for the Scriptures. As a way of helping me in this endeavor I’d appreciate your questions regarding my positions, feedback, pushback, etc. Thank you.
Welcome to the world. How did it get here? I believe that God created everything in the heavens and earth ex nihilo out of divine fiat. Now that I’ve used fancy words what do I mean by that?
First, I believe that, as Genesis 1:1 says, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” This passage is irrefutable in directing us to the source of universe. God himself created sky and ground. Cosmos and concrete. The depths of space and the subterranean depths and everything in between. God has made it all. God demonstrate that He is the creator when he speaks to Job and questions him, “Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth?” (Job 38:4). The Bible has no qualms with declaring that God is the one that made it all. What is interesting is that often in Paul’s preaching of the gospel to the Gentiles he included the doctrine of God as creator of all things (Acts 14:15, 17:24). We must not disagree with this cardinal doctrine.
But what did God make all things from? This is the second part of my definition. God created everything in the heavens and earth ex nihilo or, out of nothing. God used no pre-existent material, no primordial soup, nothing of any sort in creating all things. He made everything out of nothing. The writer of Hebrews declares 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, emphasis mine). What are the things that are not visible to create the visible? Nothing. God creates out of nothing everything that is.
So how did God create all things? Much ink is spilled and with the rise advancement of the Enlightenment perspective of Darwinism and Evolutionary Development our modern world attempts to answer this question through the vehicle of scientific research. The Scriptures give us a clear answer to this question. He made it by divine fiat or by His Divine Word. God spoke, it was created. This is the emphasis of the creative days of Genesis 1. Today we focus so much on how this creation is scientifically possible rather than seeing that the emphasis of this first chapter is on God’s creative Word. God spoke, it came into existence. His Word is authoritative, powerful, creative. Furthermore, Scripture reveals to us that Jesus is this Creative Word of God (John 1:1) and that “by him [Jesus] all things were created, in heaven and on earth… all things were created through him and for him (Colossians 1:16).
The point of this development is to see that God is the Creator of all things, making them out of nothing by His Divine Power as He spoke His Divine Word. Because of this belief I may be considered a Neanderthal in my thinking. So be it. Here I stand.