Thursday, May 19, 2011

The Self-existence of God

Attribute of God:  Self-Existence!

Novatian said, "God has no origin." Although we would agree with very little else of what Novatian believed, he was absolutely right on this point. This very idea distinguishes that which is God from whatever is not God.

God is self existent. Everything else in this universe is created and therefore necessarily had an origin. There is not one thing material or immaterial, corporeal or incorporeal that is self-caused. We are taught that anything that exists must have had a cause that antedates it and was either equal to or greater than itself.

Almost every child at some point asks the question, "Where did God come from?" This question shows that even in the youngest of minds everything that exists stems from a cause. Everything is created by some cause.

It is extremely difficult to wrap our mind around the concept that God has always existed with having had no beginning. In our finiteness we find it unsettling and even uncomfortable to imagine anything that is so indescribably self-existent, self-dependent, self-sufficient and who is responsible to one one. Philosophy and science are proof of the antagonism toward God. To quote A. W. Tozer the reason is, "that they are dedicated to the task of accounting for things and are impatient with anything that refuses to give an account of itself."

Frederick w. Faber tried to capture the idea of a God who is independent of both matter and space in these lines:

Timeless, spaceless, single, lonely,
Yet sublimely Three,
Thou art grandly, always, only
God in Unity!
Lone in grandeur, lone in glory,
Who shall tell Thy wondrous story?
Awful Trinity!

Regardless of far back into time we can force our minds, God had no beginning. Since God is infinite and we are finite we can not go back far enough and imagine what it really means that God has always existed. We want to start His existence at some point due to the problem of not being able to understand infinity.


welcome to my world of poetry said...

Wonderful comforting words there Gregg, Thanks for sharing them with us.

Have a good day.

Pat Donovan said...

No begining, No end, The great I AM. In the begining there was God.

Michael Wright said...

My, what a wonderful God we serve! Beautiful thought, and great post.

Have you ever read Stephen Charnock's "Existence and Attributes of God" Bro. Gregg?

Gregg said...

@ Michael - no I haven't. It is on my wish list. I would love to get a copy!

Michael Wright said...

I'm still laboring through it (joyfully). It's quite a read, I'm in vol. 2, (I bought the older Baker two-volume edition, since I mainly buy used books) and it is well worth your time and money. This post just reminded me of the book.

Cathy M. said...

That hurt my brain. I just can't think about infinitude. (Titus 1:2 also makes my brain hurt.)

RonJoeWhite said...

My little pea brain has a hard enough time trying to figure out whether I should have 1 or 2 cups of coffee with my bran muffin in the morning.

Thinking about God having no beginning or no end is something I never think about... I just believe it.

Penned Pebbles said...

Cathy is right, it makes my brain hurt just to get near the concept of infinity, let alone trying to figure it out. But it is very comforting and humbling to know that God always is. Blessings!

Diane said...

From Everlasting to Everlasting. Our comfort and our joy.
Thank you Gregg.

bluepurpleandscarlett said...

This is a super tough concept to grasp, like the trinity, but maybe even harder for me. I love Faber's lines, though. There's another quote I love by him, though I'm not sure where it's from-I've had it in my bible cover for years:
Thou art a sea, immense
Thou art a sea which can contract itself within my narrow heart...