Everyone on the planet without exception has a father. And his or her father had a father.
The term father refers in the most basic sense to someone who is responsible for the physical pro-creation of children. But it also implies the concept of fatherhood – the personal care, protection, and provision that one has responsibility to provide for his offspring.
Fatherhood is an attitude, one of love and care and affection for his offspring. Fatherhood is a status, with responsibility expressed in the atmosphere of loving affection.
But who is God’s father?
Among the pagan deities there existed a hierarchy. Not all gods were created equal, and even among those that were, there existed different rankings of status and recognition of power.
Some gods had children, often birthed in horrific ways or through immoral circumstances. Rarely were the relationships depicted in mythology between the god and his/her offspring peaceful.
Unlike the gods of the nations who had beginnings and births, Isaiah declares that Israel’s God was everlasting (Isaiah 40:28).
No beginning. From the beginning. In the beginning.
“Everlasting God…First and Last” (Is. 41:4, 44:6, 48:12). All this speaks to the eternality and exalted status of Israel’s Father-God.
He had no beginning.
He was first – before Him there was nothing. Even in a statement like this, there is the linguistic suspicion that there must be a state that existed before God who came first.
But the reality is that all reality springs from God. There is no reality – whether that reality be physical or metaphysical, concrete or conceptual – there is no reality apart from God!
God had no beginning because all reality springs from Him.
And God states this to His people through His prophet. All these idols had beginnings. They all exist inside the framework of someone’s history or consciousness, whether individual or corporate. In fact, their reality and influence depends directly on the memory and activity of their worshipers. Another way of saying this is that idols come and idols go. Every idol has its day – and this is so because all idols have a beginning.
There was a time when they were not. There will be a time when they won’t be.
Even in their day their appearance is a mirage. And then they are not. They have no reality apart from the demonic-inspired thinking in the minds of their worshipers.
But Israel’s God was present at the beginning. Every conceivable beginning finds both its source and reality in Him.
He is from the beginning.
There has never been a time since the beginning when God has not been present. When His presence has not been shaping, controlling, directing, and sustaining all things to ends designed according to His purposes. Both purposes He explicitly reveals and those known only in the secret chamber of His own divine counsel.
He is in the beginning.
Not only was God present at the beginning and not only has His presence continued, He is the source and creative energy to “the beginning.”
The beginning of beginnings found its genus in God. It sprang forth from Him!
And this beginning of all beginnings replicates itself in a host of smaller beginnings which, like the first, have their source in God.
The birth of a life, a nation, an idea, a season, or an opportunity can all be traced back in some way to God. The dawn of spring that we see all around us. The new baby we bring home from the hospital. The new job. The new invention.
Though at times tainted by sin or deformed by broken thinking or action, all beginnings come from the One who is everlasting.
He is in the ending.
God is also related to the “end” of all things. He is the first – and the last!
This is true chronologically in time – just as He was before, from, and in the beginning of human history, so He will be at the end of that history. But this is also true from the perspective of significance and importance. God is both the first and the last word on any subject or in any matter.
Until He speaks a matter is not a matter. It is of little significance.
When He has spoken, a matter has been settled and all other words are irrelevant. When God spoke, light was created. As Ken Ham assured us at our conference last week, when God speaks in His Word, we can take that as fact. The matter has been settled. He said He created everything in six literal days. When God speaks, it is settled. No matter what “science” or worldly wisdom says.
This everlasting God has spoken, and in that Word all things came into being. All things are assigned their meaning by that Word. By power of that Word all things are sustained. And according to their response to this Word all things will one day be judged.
All things are created by Him, through Him, and for Him.
And this everlasting God – far greater in every way than the fleeting idea of an idol that is quickly forgotten and passes out of the mind of those who bow down before it – is the true God.
And He is the loving Father of His people.
Both then and now.
Behold our God!