January 08, 2024

Creation Reveals the Creator

Sinclair Ferguson
Creation Reveals the Creator

Just as the work of a great artist reveals his characteristics, everything in the universe bears the stamp, “Made by God.” Today, Sinclair Ferguson considers how God reveals Himself in all creation.


Let me begin this week with a biblical word-association test. You know how these work. I say a word, and you say the first word that comes to mind. You ready? Revelation.

Now, if you’re not a Christian, “revelation” might prompt you to think of all kinds of things. I remember a friend of mine getting a suitcase for her twenty-first birthday which had the manufacturer’s name embossed on it—Revelation. So, I could imagine somebody might, remembering that, think suitcase. Or, somebody with a guilty conscience might think, hide. Or if you’re a Christian, you might think of all kinds of things. You might think of Jesus. You might think of the book of Revelation. The word millennium might come to mind.

But if you study the Bible for any length of time and know anything about theology, you know that “revelation” is a word that describes the way in which God has made Himself known to us. And He’s done that right from the very beginning—I mean the beginning, Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning, God.”

I wonder if you’ve felt as I have in recent years that while scientists want to explore the nature of the cosmos, there are some scientists in particular who seem to want to get right back to the beginning of things, to the alpha point, and then go over the border of that alpha point in order to prove that there is absolutely nothing there. And their deep motivation actually is to deny the existence of God. And of course, not all scientists have that kind of disposition. But some of them are, like I remember as a youngster, Yuri Gagarin, the first Russian cosmonaut going up into space and coming back down and saying, “I went there to the edge of the universe,”—which of course he didn’t—“and there was no God.”

If that ever did happen, I think we might be justified in saying, “We Christians have been telling you that for centuries. We’ve been telling you that when you get to edge of the cosmos, you will find nothing, because God has created all things out of nothing. And, after all, the eternal God is not going to be subject to your little scientific experimentation.” No, the age-old question that philosophers have always asked and scientists still seek to penetrate—“Why is there something and not nothing?”—is a question that’s answered right in the very first chapter of the Bible, right in the very first verse. It is because God has revealed Himself in creation. The uncreated God has made all things.

And if you think about it, that inevitably means that everything that God has made reveals Him. If something is created by a creator, then that created thing reveals the creator, just as the work of a great artist reveals himself, just as art experts can tell you, “I see the characteristic signs of this great artist in this particular painting.” And so, the Scriptures teach us, if we have eyes to see, then we will recognize that everything in the universe bears this stamp, made by God, and revealing Him.

Paul puts it like this in Romans 1:19, God’s invisible attributes have been clearly perceived ever since the creation of the world in the things that have been made. John Calvin puts it, I think, delightfully when he says this: “The acts of creation were like God putting on His outside clothes in order that we might see who He is, what He is like, and what He has done.”

It’s in this way that the invisible God makes His invisible attributes known to us in visible things. And that’s revelation. But we’re blind to it because of our sin, and our eyes are opened to it by the grace of Jesus Christ. That’s why the hymn writer Anna Letitia Waring once wrote, “Something lives in every hue that Christless eyes have never seen.” As Christians, we certainly don’t know everything, but the great thing is we know something about everything. We know that it’s been made by God. We know that we are living in His world. And we know that we are secure with Him.