Tuesday: Beginning with God

Romans 12:2 In this week’s studies, we learn that if we are to avoid conforming to the world around us, we must learn to recognize God’s truth and pursue it.
Beginning with God

Where do we start if we want not to conform to this world? There is a sense in which we could begin at any point, since truth is a whole and truth in any area will inevitably lead to truth in every other area. But if the dominant philosophy of our day is secularism (which means viewing all of life only in terms of the visible world), then the best of all possible starting places is the doctrine of God, for God alone is above and beyond the world and is eternal. 

What does that mean for our thinking? 

Well, if there is a God, that very fact means that there is literally such a thing as the supernatural. “Supernatural” means over, above or in addition to nature. In other words, God is. God exists. He is there, whether we acknowledge it or not, and He stands behind the cosmos. In fact, it is only because there is a God that there is a cosmos, since without God nothing else could possibly have come to be. 

Several years ago at the Philadelphia Conference on Reformed Theology, Professor John H. Gerstner was talking about creation and he referred to something his high school physics teacher once said. The teacher said, “The most profound question that has ever been asked by anybody is: Why is there something rather than nothing?” 

Gerstner said that he was quite impressed with that at the time. But later, as he sharpened his ability to think, he recognized that it was not a profound question at all. It posed an alternative, something rather than nothing. 

“Nothing” eludes definition. It even defies conception. For as soon as you say, “Nothing is…” nothing ceases to be nothing and becomes something. 

As soon as you ask, “Why is there something rather than nothing?” the alternative vanishes, you are left with something, and the only possible explanation for that something is, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth” (Gen. 1:1), which is what Christianity teaches.

Study Questions
  1. What is secularism? What is a Christian response to it?
  2. Why is the doctrine of God a necessary starting place if we are to think Christianly?
  3. How does our belief in God change our worldview?

Reflection: How might an unbeliever seek to answer the question, “Why is there something rather than nothing?” How do their answers show that belief in God is utterly rational?

For Further Study: Download for free and listen to James Boice’s message, “Call to True Religion.” (Discount will be applied at checkout.)

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