Where Those Things Come From
Acts 17:25 “He himself gives everyone life and breath and everything else.”
To me, having four children doesn’t make for a shockingly large family. It wasn’t so long ago that such a family would have been on the low end of average. To many people, however, the number of people in our little tribe comes as quite a surprise. “Haven’t you figured out where those things come from yet?” we sometimes hear.
The answer is, “Yes we do. They come from God.”
When we hear of creation, no doubt we think first of the first chapters of Genesis. God spoke the words and new material objects, new phenomena, and new forms of life suddenly burst into existence. But God’s work of creation still has as much to do with why you and I are here today as it has to do with the origin of our world. “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb,” King David confesses in Psalm 139. “I believe that God has made me and every creature, and that he has given me my body and soul, eyes, ears, and all my members; my reason and all my faculties,” we learned to say in the Small Catechism.
In the Bible, creation is the special work of God. The Hebrew language even has a special word for creating which is used only of the creating work which the Lord does. You and I might sometimes think of imaginative ways to rearrange the “stuff” of which our world is made. We refer to people who are gifted at such rearrangements as “creative.”
But only God himself can literally make something out of nothing. Only he has the brilliance to produce something absolutely unique and original. You and I are living examples of his originality, brilliance, and power.
That God is the maker of all things, that some intelligent being is behind this wonderful and complex world of which we are a part, ought to be obvious to everyone. “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from has been made,” the Apostle Paul once wrote to the Romans.
And yet, there is no way of proving God’s creating work to someone who doesn’t want to recognize it. “By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible” (Hebrews 11:3). We can point out that evolutionary theory is more the product of naturalistic philosophy than scientific investigation, but those who have not come to trust Jesus or his word may still prefer to believe that they have apes in their family tree.
While others continue to believe that they are the children of chimps, however, we can revel in the reality that we are the children of God. Not only has he made us the very crown of his creation, but he has also created us a second time. He bought us with the blood of his Son. By water and the Word he not only washed away the sins of our old creation. He made us a new creation—people of faith and the Spirit. The Gospel of Jesus Christ has the power to create us all over again, answering the question, “Where do God’s children come from?”
They come from the same place our children do. They come from God.