Creation Worldview

God Created the World just as Genesis describes. But what does this mean for one's worldview? To believe that God created the world is to accept a set of principles by which one interprets experience, knowledge and by which one comes to conclusions about the fundamental nature of reality. To believe that God created the World is to believe something like the following:


God made, from nothing, all that exists and is not God. This means that what is not God is not eternal. God is eternal. Creation has a beginning. The universe, cosmos, creation also refers to the arrangement of all that exists. (order) God has created stuff and its governing principles, laws of nature, physics, logic. Everything is what it is because, in some sense, of who God is.

God governs creation. Creation is utterly dependent upon its creator. Even the laws of physics that order the motion of planets are created laws.

God is not part of creation. Creation and creator are distinct. And that means that God is ultimate/necessary while creation is derivative/contingent. God is complete without creation and has no need of it; it does not add to Him. God creates freely and without compulsion. God relates to the world as its creator

God is incomprehensible. If God is utterly distinct from creation then it would be impossible for us, being part of creation, to know God without God revealing himself to us. So knowledge of God is dependent on God. God reveals himself through creation (general revelation) and through scripture (special revelation). He reveals himself supremely in the person of Jesus of Christ. 

It would also be impossible to know anything like God since there is nothing in creation that is like God (can you think of anything that is omnipresent, omnibenevolent, omniscient?) God does not share his essence with anything created. To know God, God must reveal himself to us in the relation he establishes with creation.

The important point is that God is not comprehensible by creation (inc humans). There is mystery in God. Can you figure out the Triunity of God? The incarnation of God? These are, in some way mysterious to us. By the way, this points to the finitude of human knowledge. However, because God is all knowing it does not point to the finitude of knowledge itself. 

Creation is good. Gnostics taught that matter is inherently evil, a lesser thing than spirit and to be denigrated. Creation being made by God implies the goodness of creation. As Paul writes: “For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving; for then it is consecrated by the word of God and prayer.” (1 Tim 4:4-5).

It is also what makes us think that human life has intrinsic value. The goodness of what God has made in his own likeness determines our view of reproductive ethics. Is abortion wrong? If follows from a Christian view of creation that, yes, abortion destroys God given life.

There is no human autonomy. If God created everything, then nothing is self-made. If everything depends on God for sustained existence, then nothing is independent. And if everything that is created is made for a particular purpose decided by the creator then nothing is autonomous. A modern humanist might say that the essence of fruitful human life is freedom from all authority, but a Christian says that God’s law is the condition for freedom.

Creation has a purpose. As Wolters writes, “The given reality of the created order is such that it is possible to have schools and industry, printing and rocketry, needlepoint and chess... The whole vast range of human civilization is neither spectacle of the arbitrary aberrations of an evolutionary freak nor the inspiring panorama of the creative achievements of the autonomous self; it is rather a display of the marvelous wisdom of God in creation and the profound meaningfulness of our tasks in the world.” (Wolters, 38)

Genesis 1: In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.

And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day.

And God said, “Let there be an expanse in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters from the waters.” And God made the expanse and separated the waters that were under the expanse from the waters that were above the expanse. And it was so. And God called the expanse Heaven. And there was evening and there was morning, the second day.

And God said, “Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together into one place, and let the dry land appear.” And it was so. God called the dry land Earth, and the waters that were gathered together he called Seas. And God saw that it was good.

And God said, “Let the earth sprout vegetation, plants yielding seed, and fruit trees bearing fruit in which is their seed, each according to its kind, on the earth.” And it was so. The earth brought forth vegetation, plants yielding seed according to their own kinds, and trees bearing fruit in which is their seed, each according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. And there was evening and there was morning, the third day.

And God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night. And let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years, and let them be lights in the expanse of the heavens to give light upon the earth.” And it was so. And God made the two great lights—the greater light to rule the day and the lesser light to rule the night—and the stars. And God set them in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth, to rule over the day and over the night, and to separate the light from the darkness. And God saw that it was good. And there was evening and there was morning, the fourth day.

And God said, “Let the waters swarm with swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the expanse of the heavens.” So God created the great sea creatures and every living creature that moves, with which the waters swarm, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. And God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.” And there was evening and there was morning, the fifth day.

And God said, “Let the earth bring forth living creatures according to their kinds—livestock and creeping things and beasts of the earth according to their kinds.” And it was so. And God made the beasts of the earth according to their kinds and the livestock according to their kinds, and everything that creeps on the ground according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.

Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

So God created man in his own image,
in the image of God he created him;
male and female he created them.

And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” And God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit. You shall have them for food. And to every beast of the earth and to every bird of the heavens and to everything that creeps on the earth, everything that has the breath of life, I have given every green plant for food.” And it was so. And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.


*Most of the material from this blog comes from two sources: Creation Regained by Albert Wolters and Philosophy for Understanding Theology by Diogenes Allen. 

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