EARTH DAY Some apologetic implications of genesis 1.1 public
SOME APOLOGETICIMPLICATIONS OF GENESIS 1:1byKevin BallIt is the motivation of this writer to honor and glorify the One and Only True God asrevealed in Scripture by publishing the truth about Him and what He has done for thebenefit of believers, as well as those who are not yet believers.
PRESUPPOSITONSThis presentation presupposes that the Bible, comprisedexclusively of the thirty-nine books of the Old Testamentand twenty-seven books of the New Testament, is theWord of God. Every word is “God-breathed,” the productof divine inspiration and as such is divinely authoritative(2 Tim 3:16). Since Scripture was "God-breathed," it iswholly inerrant and true in everything that it affirms (John17:17), whether in doctrine, practice, history, science, orgeography.
PRESUPPOSITONS (Con’t)This inspired text has been preserved for us in the totalityof manuscripts and versions containing Holy Scripture.The Bible is perspicuous and the understanding of it isby normal and ordinary means, using the plain sense ofhuman language. This method, variously called "normal,"or "grammatical-historical," is the only hermeneuticconsistent with the doctrine of perspicuity.
PRESUPPOSITONS (Con’t)Furthermore, the transcendent and final nature of itsauthority prohibits the subjection of its truth claims toanother authority (Ps 119:89; Isa 42:8, Heb 6:13).Instead, the Word of God is self-attesting and self-authenticating (John 10:35, 17:17) and the certainty of itsauthority is imparted to believers through the illuminationof the Holy Spirit (1 Cor 2:4-5, 14; 1 John 2:20-21). TheWord of God is final. There is no higher authority, nor isthere an equal authority necessary to complement it (Ps119:89). As such it is sufficient for the believer in allmatters pertaining to life and godliness (2 Tim 3:15-17, 2Pet 1:3-4).
PRESUPPOSITONS (Con’t)Lastly, Scripture is a progressive revelation of God and hisplan (Heb 1:1-2) for time and eternity intended for thegood of His creation. The ultimate and unifying purposeof this revelation is the glorification of God.Consequently, this presentation of the Apologetic Importof Genesis 1:1 is within a distinctively doxologicalframework.
THE NEED FOR THIS PRESENTATIONThere is a tendency on the part of Christians toadvocate apologetic strategies and methodologiesthat are less and less derived from Scripture.Philosophical and other purely rationalapologetics fail from the start.As a result, many Christians loose the battle for thebeginning at the beginning and they fail to dojustice to the character of God and HisRevelation.
THE NEED FOR THIS PRESENTATION (CON’T)“Of absolutely radical importance for the developmentof Christian apologetics is the biblical doctrine ofcreation. Indeed, so much is this the root of the matterthat apart from it no effective apologetic is possible;for the doctrine of creation is the indispensablefoundation of our understanding of all existence. Thisdoctrine affirms, first of all, the absolute primacy orpriority of Almighty God, and thus the eternity andtotal independence of his existence.”Cornelius Van Til
I sing the mighty power of God, thatmade the mountains rise, That spreadthe flowing seas abroad, and built thelofty skies. I sing the wisdom that ordainedthe sun to rule the day;“I Sing the Mighty Power of God”
The moon shines full at God’s command, and all the stars obey.I sing the goodness of the Lord, who filled the earth with food,Who formed the creatures through the Word, and thenpronounced them goodLord, how Thy wonders are displayed, wherever I turn my eye,If I survey the ground I tread, or gaze upon the sky.“I Sing the Mighty Power of God”
There’s not a plant or flower below, but makes Thy gloriesknown,And clouds arise, and tempests blow,by order from Thy throne;While all that borrows life fromThee is ever in Thy care;And everywhere that we can be, Thou God art present there.“I Sing the Mighty Power of God” (Con’t)
Given the key nature of Genesis 1:1, it isonly proper then to study itscontents carefully,hence an exegetical study. For thepurpose of this presentation, onlydefinitive or conclusive exegeticalhighlights will be presented. Thiswill be followed by SomeApologetic Implications of Genesis 1:1.INTRODUCTION
“In the beginning Godcreated the heaven and the earth”
“In the beginning”Is in the ABSOLUTE state (meaning In the absolute beginningof time God created)This adverb is used frequently as an antonym for the “end”(Job 8:7; Eccl 7:8)• All ancient versions, Masoretes, LXX, most all early Jewishand Christian writers,Barrick, Buzenitz, Craigen, A. Ross,Matthews, Hamilton, Calvin, Luther, Rooker, Kidner,Ridderbos, Young, Childs, and Hasel.
“God”Has revealed Himself in the Scripture.He made everything (Exodus 20:11, Neh 9:6, Psalm 104:24,Isaiah 44:24)In him all things were created, in heaven and upon the earth,things visible and things invisible and all has been createdthrough Him and unto Him (Col 1:16)All men are His creation (Prov 22:3).This God who created all things rulesover all (Ps 103:19; Matt 11:25)
“Created”The subject of in Scripture is always the Godof the OT and never pagan deities.It refers to past completed action.Context (absolute beginning and no preexistingmaterials implied) and theAnalogy of Faith (Ps 148:5; Rom 4:17; Heb 1:3),not word itself command creation ex nihilo
“The Heaven and Earth”Is a Merism describing theAll that God Created in the Universe*Heaven and Earth and everything in betweenlike Day and Night and everything in between.
Herbert Spencer in 1862 in a work entitled“First Principles” identified time, force, action,space, and matter as ultimate scientific ideas.The five categories, according to Spencercomprise everything subject to scientificexamination.
Genesis 1:1 encompassesall of these categories:“In the beginning”—that’s time. “God”—that’sforce. “Created”—that’s action. “Theheavens”—that’s space. “And the earth”—that’s matter.In the first verse of the Bible God laid out plainly what noscientist or philosopher cataloged until the nineteenthcentury.”MacArthur, John. The Battle for the Beginning : The Bible on Creation and the Fall of Adam,Nashville, TN: W Pub. Group, 2001, Page 40.
“That free act of the triune Godby which in the beginningfor his own glory he made,without the use of preexisting materials,the whole visible and invisible universe.”A. H. StrongCreation
Implication # 1 Genesis 1:1Presupposes God!Genesis 1:1 “In the beginning God!”Note: There are no formal proofs in the Bible for God’sexistence. It is and understood fact.Application: Concluding from creation that Godprobably exists is blasphemousApplication: God has no antecedents, and no equals
Implication #2 Genesis 1:1 Presupposedthe God of Scripture!He is identified later as the Lord God (Gen. 2:7)He owns everything (Ps 24:1) “whatsoever is underthe whole of heaven is His” (Job 41:11; cf. Gen14:19)His sovereign rule extends over the earth …overevery soul (Ezek 18:4) unto all generations(Exodus 15:18, Psalm 10:16).
This God who created all things rules over all (Ps103:19; Matt 11:25)Application: Concluding from creation even that a“god” definitely does exist isequally blasphemous.Note: Sinful man is content with a God of their owndevising but not with the God who is,the God of Scripture.Implication #2 Genesis 1:1 Presupposedthe God of Scripture! (Con’t)
Implication #3 Genesis 1:1Establishes that God is in ChargeGenesis 14:19“God Most High, Possessor ofheaven and earth”
Romans 9:21“Does not the potter have powerover the clay…”Daniel 7:27”His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,And all dominions shallserve and obey Him.”
Daniel 4:25“…till you know that the Most High rules in thekingdom of men…”* There is not one square inch of the world, nota split second of time that is not dependent on,controlled by, and subservient to God.That is why all are commanded to praise (Ps150:6) and serve Him (Ps 72:11).
Implication #4 Genesis 1:1 Presupposes theGod of Scripture is Eternaland Prior to All(God is Transcendent)Before God created there was onlythe Eternal God (Aseity of God), matter, man,time, space are all subsequent toand proceed from God.*Failure to realize this tends to temporalize theCreator/eternalize the created.
Implication # 5 Genesis 1:1 (i.e. Creation)Proclaims God is Glorious (Great)Psalm 19:1The heavens declare the glory of God;And the firmament makes know the work of His handsDay to day pours forth speech,And night to night reveals knowledgeThe idea is the constancy of theheaven’s testimony.There is no place that it is not observed(“to the end of the world”)
Psalm 8:3-4“When I consider Your heavens, the work of Yourfingers,What is man that You are mindful ofhim…”*NOTE: General Revelation is God’s witness of Himselfto all men. It is given to mankind in general and gives ageneral knowledge of God. It is a universal witness toHis existence and something of His character. There isnothing in G.R. about the love of God, the character ofsin, the need for faith and repentance, the person andwork of Jesus Christ, or the promise of forgiveness
Implication # 6 Genesis 1:1 (i.e.Creation) Proclaims God is PowerfulRomans 1:20“For since the creation of the world His invisibleattributes are clearly seen,…even His eternalpower and Godhead, …”God has made known to all men things about HimselfGod Himself is the Revealer/Teacher(He has shown it to them) andHe has revealed His eternal power andGodhead are clearly seen
Implication # 6 Genesis 1:1 (i.e. Creation)Proclaims God is Powerful (Con’t)Genesis 1:3“Then God said, “Let there be light”and there was light.”No one creates like this but God! God’seffortless, totally free act of creating is amanifestation of His sovereignty.Commonly described as creation by divine fiat..
Implication # 6 Genesis 1:1 (i.e. Creation)Proclaims God is Powerful (Con’t)By His exhaustless power, God can do all thingsconsistent with His nature and purpose. “Power” is the ability to produce effects.Genesis 17:1“God Almighty”Jeremiah 32:17“God made heaven and earth by His great power.Nothing is too difficult for thee.”
Implication # 7 Genesis 1:1 Postulates (thatis, demands) that God is the eternal,exhaustive, and exclusive source of life.John 5:26“For as the Father has life in Himself,so He has granted the Son to have life in Himself”Psalm 36:9“With thee is the fountain of life”*Indeed all that we are is derived fromthe Uncreated One!
IMPLICATION # 9 GENESIS 1:1 GOD ISTHE FOUNDATION OF ALLKNOWLEDGEGod’s knowledge includes all things past,present, and future, immediately, simultaneously,and eternally,whether things actual or possible:God is all-knowing.This is true because He is the eternal, exhaustive,and exclusive source of all other knowledge.
IMPLICATION # 9 GENESIS 1:1 IMPOSESA CREATOR / CREATURE DISTINCTION*There exists a sharp divisionbetween the eternal andthe temporal.
As Christians and especially as leaders weare called by God to defend and contendfor the faith. This demands that weunderstand the Bible’s cosmology becausethe faith is in a major way tied to andpredicated upon it.CONCLUSION
We must do the work of exegesis, arrive a solidconclusions and then boldlyproclaim the truth!CONCLUSION (Con’t)“casting down arguments and every high thing thatexalts itself against the knowledge of God,bringing every thought into captivity tothe obedience of Christ”2 Corinthians 10:5
CONCLUSION (Con’t)And Ezra said: “You are the Lord, you alone;you have made heaven, the heaven of heavens,with all their host, the earth and all that is onit, the seas and all that is in them; and youpreserve all of them; and the host of heavenworships you.Nehemiah 9:6
Give God the Glory He is Dueand Praise Him for HisAwesome Creation