“And God said…” Genesis 1:3
Science describes the beginning of space and time as a big bang. But in fact, scientists don’t think it made any sound at all. The Bible gives us another account entirely. God said (Gen. 1:3).
Here approaches of science and Scripture now move in opposite directions. Science begins with what we can observe and extends these natural laws into the unknown.
Scripture begins with the assertion that God exists beyond what we can see, but gives purpose to everything that exists. (See my posts on Peering Into the Unknown and Who’s There?)
In the first two verses of Genesis these approaches can be kept separate. But now Scripture breaks that separation. God acts in space and time in a decisive, audible way, and it changes the physical world.
When God spoke, he gave purpose and meaning to the universe.
This is something beyond what we can grasp, and beyond what science can explain. We have no way to describe how something can be spoken into existence out of nothing. Here science may conclude that the Bible cannot be true.
Science is authoritative in how things work in the physical world. We acknowledge this when we drive a car or fly in a plane. We accept that the things science has designed by the laws of nature will work as they should, even as we pray to be safe.
But God can intervene in creation and supersede these natural laws. These are miracles in which God acts outside of the usual way he designed the physical world to operate. But God never acts outside his purpose for his creation.
God had a purpose for creation before it began, which was to show his character and glory in saving those who trust in him. Everything God does, and allows to happen, is part of this plan.
The book of Ephesians says God acted “before the foundation of the world…” to choose those who would have a special part in his purpose (Eph. 1:4). This plan is the most important thing in understanding the Bible, and will affect how we reconcile it to science.
If we conclude that God speaking is a minor point that can be overlooked, we’d be wrong. The claim that God speaks to change things is found all throughout the Bible (Heb. 11:3).
Science can tell us much about the universe, but it cannot tell us why we are here. The Bible tells us why we are here, and shows us the way to know what is beyond.
And leads us there by giving us a voice to follow.