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ExNihilo

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Posted by Keith Wilson/">Keith Wilson on October 1, 1998 04:31:03 UTC

I hope you will allow me to discuss this and other topics relating to God. I come from my own study, not from the product of others. Following is my understanding that we come from God; I cannot conceive that we came from nothing. This note is, if you will allow, the first of a few that I would like to post.

ExNihilo "Let there be light: and there was light."-GOD

From ancient times, thoughts concerning the origin of the world have been associated with a deity who made the light and subsequently the heavens, the earth, and man. The God who separated light from darkness has been considered a life giving force, the first cause, and because of this act of love, the foundation and the very existence of man.

The new theories of the origin of the world, as seen by modern cosmogony seem perplexing to the human mind. Through the centuries, as mankind gradually accumulated knowledge about the various observed phenomena taking place in the world system, a scientific method began to take shape, concluding that the way to the discovery of a first cause would be through historical data-hence, the theory of the big bang and a new era.

There have been many from the Church and the physical disciplines who have characterized the scientific era by searching out an understanding of the origin of the world's emergence totally from natural causes. For example, a reasonably complete and consistent theory of planetary formation. This comes through knowledge of the workings of our solar system and the progress of observational astronomy. However, though the universal picture has been broadened, difficulties remain-explaining the origin and evolution of the great galactic families of stars is one. Understanding the nature, size, and shape of one galaxy and then comparing it to another may suggest to us which one is older, but alas, everything is relative. How old is the oldest?

There is no scientific absolute that can explain a cause. The big bang is a belief based on hypothetical circumstances. It is thought to have resulted from a continuous evolutionary process that started in a highly compressed homogeneous material a few billion years ago. I ask, where were you when that happened? Then I say, it must be hypothetical.

Some scientists believe the same circumstances require a hypothesis that says the existing universe has been somewhat the same throughout eternity. The "steady-state universe" theory claims the continuous creation of matter in intergalactic space.

Cosmogony is generally left in the hands of the theologians. It concerns the creation, origination, or manner of coming into being of the world or universe. More specifically, a biblical cosmogony that is generally accepted in the monotheistic Protestant tradition is: the doctrine of the origin of the universal cosmic order by the creative power of God. Ex nihilo is a cosmogony that means the universe was created out of nothing, or,-not from previously existing material. In order though, to introduce my thoughts on biblical cosmogony, I find it necessary to insert a short piece I wrote some time ago.

Creation out of nothing-ex nihilo-infers there is no God. Can there be something from nothing? It is "nothing" that does not exist, for God is all in all. All in all connotes existence-God exists!

If we separate the physical from the spiritual, without regard to a continuum, then that which is physical would come from nothing-ex nihilo-and the bodily ascension of Jesus Christ would be without reason. If however, we consider there is one spiritual entity, the "all in all," and we come from and reside within that spirit which exists in its eternal state, the Light, then the reason is that we have come from something. God created us means we come from something. God is spirit. God is something. "Nothing" then, would not exist. And, it would be reasonable for the physical body of Jesus to make the change and ascend into Glory.

Let's reason together. If we put "nothing" in a box over here, and put "something" in a box over there, a duality exists. If God is "all, and in all" there is no duality-there is God and that which is created-the singularity of one within the other.

Because we choose a linear historical frame of reference for our academic pursuits, in the deep recesses of our mental and spiritual understandings we can only see darkness. The great authoritative kabbalist Nahmanides in his commentary to the Torah of creatio ex nihilo suggested that in its literal sense it is the free creation of the primeval matter from which everything was made. However, he implied by his kabbalistic allusion in his commentary to Genesis 1, that the true mystical meaning of the text is the emergence of all things from the absolute nothingness of God. Essentially, the kabbalists thought that this nothingness is the barrier confronting the human intellectual faculty when it reaches the limits of its capacity. There is a realm they think, that no created being can intellectually comprehend, which can only be described as "nothingness." Most Christian denominations agree to creatio ex nihilo, believing that the only source of the doctrine of creation out of nothing is found in the Bible. However, this theological cosmogony creatio ex nihilo is in line with most scientific thought. The prevailing cosmological and astronomical proofs of this line of reason, i.e. their singularity theorems, suggest that at some definite time in the past the universe was compressed to a state of zero size and infinite density, called a singularity. As the doctrine creatio ex nihilo leads us to a state of nothingness, so does the written mathematical laws of physics break down into a place of nothingness at a singularity-darkness is to much for the human mind or mathematics to comprehend. It seems that history can only lead us to ... .

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