Monday, 4 November 2013
For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever. Amen. Romans 11:36
Three Greek prepositions are used in this last verse of Romans 11 – ek, dia, and eis – “of,” “through,” and “to.” It is an all-encompassing statement concerning God, His creation, and all that creation holds. It is God, not a “big bang,” which created the universe. In fact, a big-bang is a logical contradiction. For the universe to “bang” into existence means that it would have to have existed before it existed because nothing cannot create something. The universe is not a self-existent entity, and therefore if there was nothing, there would still be – for all eternity – nothing.
But there is a self-existent God who is the Source of all things. And despite the constant assault against Him and against His authority, He owes nothing to man. Though we argue against His goodness, claim that we deserve His favor, and act as if He isn’t even there until we get into a bad patch, none of our actions changes His sovereign rule.
“For of Him” indicates that He is the Creator and the Source of everything. Genesis 1:1 says, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” If there was a beginning, and there was (thanking Einstein for demonstrating this), then there must have been a beginner. For of Him are all things.
For “through Him” indicates that God is the Sustainer of all things. He is the unseen agency of our continued existence. “And *he* is before all, and all things subsist together by him” Colossians 1:17 (Darby). He is the One who holds all things together. But even more, He is the One who allows all things to continue from moment to moment. This is why Jesus, speaking to the leaders of Israel, was able to make this statement –
“But Jesus answered them, ‘My Father has been working until now, and I have been working.'” John 5:17
God’s creative effort ended on the sixth day, but His sustaining effort does (and must) continue on without ceasing. Without this continued sustaining power, all things would simply cease to exist. For through Him are all things.
For “to Him” shows that He is the end-purpose and goal of all things. He is the final and ultimate reason of every created thing. As the Source and Sustainer, this can be the only logical conclusion. Because He created time, He is therefore outside of time – eternally before and after. All things find their conclusion in Him. And, amazingly, because he participated in His creation by entering the stream of humanity, all things are directed toward their completion in the Person of Jesus. Hebrews 1:2, speaking of Christ Jesus, says that He is “appointed heir of all things.” Christ is the recipient of all power, rule, and authority; a state which will exist as long as God exists, which is eternally. For to Him are all things.
“To Him be glory forever” can be analyzed and spoken of until words run out and yet there will be more to say. The praises shall never end, the marvel shall never cease, the awe at beholding the incomprehensible greatness of God will never get old. From Him flows an eternal stream of delight and majesty. In the new heavens and the new earth, we shall behold this with our eyes and the praises of God will know no end. And it was all made possible by His own wisdom and splendor, displayed in the most amazing way of all –
“He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist. And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence. For it pleased the Father that in Him all the fullness should dwell, and by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross.” Colossians 1:15-20
Life application: If you are planning on boasting, do so in the cross of Jesus Christ.
From Your wisdom came the universe and all it contains. By Your skill, You created man in Your image. With Your approval, we exercised our free will against You. In Your mercy, You withheld our demise. In Your goodness, You entered into Your creation. And with the greatest display of love, You went to the cross to redeem us. May I boast in nothing but the cross of Jesus Christ. Amen.