THE CREATION OF THE UNIVERSE
An Expression of God’s Love
The biblical narrative gives us a look, from our own unique standpoint, at the connection that exists between humanity and its God. This is a connection that is, above all things, rooted in God’s identity. We are told, God is love (1 John 4:8). Not that He loves, but that He is love. Something much more than God’s character or temperament, it describes the fundamental nature of the creator who refers to Himself as our Father. By His very essence God is social because love is completed with an expression of itself toward a beneficiary. Humanity is the beneficiary of that relationship. We are the object of that love, created to share in that love and a proof of this is that all the universe is created in support of the human race.
Imagine looking down on yourself hovering just 9 or 10 feet above your head while you stand on the beach. Notice that, as you get higher and higher above yourself on the beach, you appear to get smaller and smaller. At just 600 feet or so you are already looking like a stick figure. At a quarter of a mile, you are reduced to a dot on a patch of tan – a small dot. At a mile high, the beach appears to be a thread separating the blue waters from the street grid of the city in which you live and from five miles, the altitude of a low flying commercial aircraft, only large properties such as parks, an airport, interstate highways and main traffic arteries are distinguishable.
At 50 miles altitude, you have reached the Karman Line, the boundary between aeronautics and astronautics – the edge of space. From here the curvature of the earth can be seen on the horizon and the sky is dark and at 4,000 miles continents and the whole globe of the earth is visible.
You may want to take a break; it is another 238,000 miles before you pass the moon. From there you can see the earth tilted and slowly spinning on its axis. While the distance between the earth and Mars is constantly changing because of each planet’s elliptical orbit around the sun, you pass our first planetary neighbor at about 171 million miles. Now the earth is a dot in your view.
Picking up speed now, it is 9 billion miles to the edge of our solar system where the small inner planets are no longer visible. You can only see the large outer planets and the sun looks to be the size of a marble. Looking further out, maybe you can see a spiral galaxy or two like our Milky Way.
The cosmos has been producing a complex pageant, performed throughout the ages, across a celestial stage that grows ever more beautiful as we advance in our ability to gaze upon it. Planets orbit their own stars of varying age, size, and type forming solar systems that make up galaxies as far as the technology enhanced eye can see. We then came to realize that little of the show would be seen at all if we were not on the outer ribbon of this galaxy, situated in this particular solar system. God placed us in row one, center stage so that the show can unfold for us. He placed us exactly where we needed to be to see the splendor of the cosmos as if to say, “Come over here to see what I made for you.”
Turning to go back, maybe you had a ring side seat for some of the action. Those gargantuan planetary satellites, orbiting in a persistent ellipse around that tiny sun, provide gravitational stability and protection from space debris that is continually careening into our solar system. Consider the sun, now appearing to get larger: it is exactly the distance from the earth it needs to be, it provides powerful, life-giving energy to the entire earth in more ways than we know.
Back past Mars toward our earth soon the moon will be seen like a ping pong ball revolving around a beach ball regulating tides that are critical to the existence of the food chain. The tilt of the earth on its axis is perfect, its rotation, its orbit, the thickness of its crust, the temperature of its core, the makeup of its atmosphere all play their role perfectly being fine-tuned to sustain human life. But why should the sunrise and the sunset be spectacular events of unparalleled beauty performed for our benefit every single day? Because our maker is love.
Looking away, now, from the telescope and turning our attention inward with the microscope we enter a world of complex molecular machines, an elaborate network of interlocking assembly lines designed to manufacture proteins according to detailed instructions encoded in DNA. There is more organized data in a single strand of DNA than is contained in the entire Encyclopedia Britannica. DNA is present in almost all the living cells of all living things and so we begin to see that it is all connected. From the quark (a subatomic particle) to Pluto and beyond, everything is interrelated.
The interrelationship of everything is reflected in our human bodies, the body of Christ, humanity’s connection with the earth, and the earth’s connection with itself in all the ways necessary to sustain human life – the crown of God’s creation.
“By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.” (Hebrews 11:3 NIV) We are joined together with every other believer to form the body of Christ? (Romans 12:5, 1 Corinthians 10:17; 12:14-26) Every part of creation is so interlinked together that even nature itself is affected by the fall of humanity and groans waiting for the redemption of the children to be liberated from its bondage to decay (Romans 8:21).
We are hardwired to desire belonging. The success of man-made organizational units such as businesses, sports teams, military units, and other organizations depend on the leader’s ability to create a culture of belonging. The team concept finds its roots in interconnectedness. Everywhere we look we see it and it testifies to the fact that all things were created by Him. If God created the earth’s crust, DNA, the sun, puppies, and the Australian Aborigines, doesn’t it make sense that these things are all interconnected?
God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though he needed anything, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us: for in him we live, and move, and have our being…(Acts 17:24-28)
The Psalmist asked, “What is man that thou art mindful of him?” (Psalm 8:4) Creation was spurred by God’s love. Creation of the world and humanity was an expression of his desire to share his love with us and all of creation is moving toward the fullness of time (Ephesians 1:9-10), the end of the ages when God, having subdued all things under Christ, will reconcile all things unto Himself by the blood of the cross (Colossians 1:20). Then the Son will be subject Himself to the Father so God will be all in all (1 Corinthians 15:28).
It is astounding to think that even God becoming all in all speaks of interconnectedness. All of humanity, everyone who has ever experienced a heartbeat, appears to be necessary to the plan of God. From Adam and Eve to the last child to draw a breath, we are all a part of the plan to become all in all with our creator. So then, regarding the return of Christ and final judgement, the question may not be, “When is He coming?”, but, “How many?” How many people are required to accomplish what God set out to do? Could it be that God, in His incredible wisdom devised a masterful plan, whereby every individual is integral to the final version of what He, being all in all, has set out to do before the ages began?