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Creation: The WTF of It All

I read through the first chapter of Genesis recently. What struck me about wasn’t i’s beautiful poetry. It wasn’t its consistent rhythm through repetition, flow of the writing, or the images it pictorializes. What struck me as I read through the chapter was a question: “Why the hell does this chapter even exist?”*

Seriously. Why did God even go about creating everything anyway? I think I’ve thought about that question before and I have some silly, insignificant, and inadequate intellectual answers to it. But I never really thought about how unsatisfactory my answers were. How unsatisfactory every answer seems to be. It doesn’t make sense to my soul.

From my highly limited human perspective (let’s remember I ultimately came from dust, whose predecessor was nothingness), I don’t see why God would have a reason for creating this universe, this world, these people. He doesn’t need it. It’s not like He’s bored. He’s infinite. It’s not like He’s lonely, He’s inherently communal and inherently adequate in and of Himself. There is not any sort of thing he is missing or lacking or needing or negative feeling that creating the Universe fixes. He’s perfect, complete, whole, and just peachy without this universe, this world, these people. But, out of nothing, He created it anyway.

It makes me feel really small. Not in a bad way, but in a true way. What a fleeting existence I live! Just a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. I live in a world where everything was created by a word and could disappear from existence for all of timelessness through another word. And I am just a microscopic part of this physicality. Whatever I do is quite irrelevant. It doesn’t really matter. I’m a small person in a small universe that exists because someone created it who has no need for it. Everything I do, everything I can change, and everything I can have a positive effect on are all things that don’t exist to fill any real need anyway.

But my logic is too twisted. I think that arising out of nothing with no need for our existence means our existence is meaningless. But I’m wrong. Because everything I do does have meaning. Meaning that transcends this small universe and yet is intimately related to it. It all has meaning because the God who created everything says it has meaning. He made life and He gave life real purpose. In Genesis we find that after creating everything, His special project was not the massive and beautiful universe, but humanity. Special life was given to humanity, God’s Spirit. Special meaning was given to humanity, doing God’s work on Earth.

Even though I think my existence is insignificant because we weren’t needed, God’s reason for creating is actually much more powerful because it comes from no need. He created because of desire. He wanted this universe, this world, these people. Only out of desire for us did He create us. That’s stronger than a need and more beautiful than an obligation or an accident. It’s so unnecessary for YHWH to do what He has done, and that is what makes it so incredible.

The most fascinating part about the Creation to me is what follows it. It is incredible that there is a God powerful enough to speak the world into being, but what is just as incredible is that a God that overwhelmingly awesome would also be so humble in his intimate closeness to humanity throughout the course of history. What follows creation is God relating with people. Frustrating people like me. Terribly naïve and shortsighted individuals and groups… like me. YHWH constantly interacts with messed up people who have a need for Him just to take their next breath, but they don’t desire Him. And a perfect God who has no need for the obstinate people He created, but He desires them anyway. I can’t communicate it, but the God I know is just unbelievable. But I believe and I’m alive.

*It doesn’t really exist for any reason related to hell.

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Categories: Miscellaneous Tags: , ,
  1. Drew Leitzke
    July 20, 2011 at 12:15 am

    This post set me on a train of thought like this: As a human, I have the capacity for meaning, I understand varying levels of meaning. Certain events in life seem more meaningful than others… A creator would indeed give his creations the capacity to know and value meaning if he intended them to be both freethinking and live meaningful lives. This condition of ‘having the capacity for meaning’ is, in itself, a prompt from God to search for and live meaningful lives…

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