Westminster Shorter Catechism – Q9

Q9. What is the work of Creation?
A. The work of creation is God making all things out of nothing, by the word of His power, in the space of six days and all very good.

It’s very important for us to follow the logic of the catechism. Remember what God is like? He is infinite in his power, that’s what we were taught in question 4. “My God is so big, so strong and so mighty there’s nothing my God cannot do“. When we come to the doctrine of Creation, it is vital we remind ourselves who is behind it. This is the God without limits on his power and so the work of Creation is astounding. It should leave us in awe and worship. That is the common response of the Biblical writers to Creation.

When I teach this to Children we talk about us making things out of stuff that already exists. For a cake you need ingredients; for a den you need wood and sticks. To make anything you need materials. Stuff. None of us would dream of speaking a cake into being or calling a house into existence.

Even with technology that some of us have which enables us to turn the lights on and off with our voice, this is completely different from being able to actually create the light with our words. No one is able to do that and that is the point: only God can. He creates by speaking shown in that common refrain in Genesis 1 ‘And God said let there be…and there was.’ God’s Word is living and active, it is powerful.

God chose to create over 6 days. He could have done it all in 1 day, but he chose to create in 6. The 4th Commandment tells us that God in creating in 6 days was setting a pattern for our week (Exodus 20:8-11).

It would seem to me that we should read Genesis 1 & 2 in the most natural terms. A day is a day, as unpopular as that opinion might be. It’s vital to keep in mind that wonderful verse in Hebrews 11 ‘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..

When God created the world out of nothing, by the word of His Power in the space of 6 days, what was it like? It was very good, there was no death, no sin, no pollution, nothing to hurt or harm. Everything fit for purpose.

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