Last time we considered the Holy Spirit in our exposition of the AoF. Today, we’ll consider Article 6 – Creation.
The triune God, according to His sovereign will, created out of nothing and out of things that He had made, by immediate and mediate action, the worlds and all that is in them.1 He is the Governor and Upholder of the creation by His wisdom and by the word of His mighty power.2
While this article may be brief, it is loaded with a lot of details. And while some may feel the details are unimportant, the nature of our creation is that which is vitally important.
Accordingly, the article tells us that the triune God created everything. A few important elements are here. First, that the act of creation is a joint effort among all three members of the Triunity of God. The Father obviously acts a direct cause of creation, yet we see the Holy Spirit involved as well “hovering over the deep,” and we know of Christ’s direct involvement from Colossians 1:16 and 17. As an outpouring of a unanimous and harmonious decision of the will of God, God created all things from nothing.
We cannot fathom nothing. Even the vast expanse of outer space still contains microscopic particles. Yet, before the entire universe existed, before all matter existed in the space-time-mass continuum, God took the nothing and made it something. The universe as we know it was spoken into existence from no prior matter by God. The article also reminds us that God used matter to create as well. We, as humanity, are the prime example. God took dirt and made man, and took the rib of man and made woman. Not only is the powerful sovereign God of the universe the one who can create from nothing, He can also take matter and fundamentally change it into something completely different.
Not only did He create all things, but unlike the God of deism, He continues His active involvement in all things as well. While God’s creation of the laws of physics allows electrons to spin and build the basic foundation of matter, it doesn’t mean God isn’t upholding those same laws. An atom spins because God wills it to spin. This means that God didn’t just start things off and send us on our way. He’s intimately involved in our lives and in our world and cares about how things operate so as to maximize His own glory.
Now, the article doesn’t tell us how God created all things. This allows for some flexibility on these issues. But, I would be remiss as your pastor to not tell you that I believe that the Scriptures teach and that science verifies, that God created the universe in 6 24 hour day periods from nothing. He did not do it over millions of years nor use evolution to bring us to this point. This position is what is known as Young Earth Creationism.
For some good resources on the issue, consider the following:
Mortenson, Terry, ed. Coming to Grips with Genesis: Biblical Authority and the Age of the Earth. New Leaf, 2008.
Snelling, Andrew. Earth’s Catastrophic Past. 2 vols. Institute for Creation Research, 2009, 2010.
Kelly, Douglas F. Creation and Change. Christian Focus, 1997.
Pipa, Joseph & David Hall, eds. Did God Create in Six Days? Tolle Lege, 2005.