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Tough Questions: Who created God?


“If God created everything, then who created God? This question was asked by the 10-year-old grandson of a couple in our congregation, but it should not be dismissed as a childish question,” says The Rev’d Charlie Lacey

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If God created everything, then who created God? This question was asked by the 10-year-old grandson of a couple in our congregation, but it should not be dismissed as a childish question. Indeed, the world’s best-known atheist, Richard Dawkins, uses this question as a central pillar for his argument against the existence of God in his popular book, The God Delusion.

However, the question itself reveals that the person asking it has misunderstood an important facet of God’s nature, namely aseity; that is to say he was not created. The God Christians worship is eternal. Created gods are a delusion, which is why the Bible warns so strongly against all forms of idolatry. The very definition of idolatry is worshipping that which has been created, instead of worshipping the creator himself.

The Bible makes clear that there are two categories of “thing” in existence, there is God and there is everything else. God has always existed and everything else has been created by God. As a Christian I believe that God created everything from nothing. Admittedly, that is not an easy concept, but it is, I think, more plausible than the materialistic view that nothing created everything from nothing.

Of course, it is not easy for us to get our heads around an omnipotent (all powerful), omniscient (all knowing) and omnipresent (everywhere at once) being who has always existed. The human mind struggles to grasp that which is eternal (let alone God’s other attributes).

When we think about God being eternal, we tend to place him on some kind of time scale and then attempt to conceptualise what “forever” might look like on that timescale. As far back as the 4th century, St Augustine postulated that God is outside of time and many contemporary physicists and philosophers question the existence of time itself. If either or both are correct it would suggest that trying to imagine an infinite period of time before creation is a deeply flawed way to think about the eternal nature of God.

Another misconception, which for the sake of clarity I will caricature, is the assumption that at some point in eternity, God got really bored and so created the universe and with it sentient life. The uniquely Christian doctrine of the Trinity is an attempt to understand God as an eternal fellowship or relationship. If I, as a human being, want to have a relationship I need at least one other being to interact with. That is not the case with God, who is three equally divine persons (Father, Son and Holy Spirit), making, in total, one God. Therefore, God did not create human beings because he lacked relationship, indeed the relationship between Father, Son and Holy Spirit has always existed and will always exist.

In conclusion, the question, “Who Created God?” doesn’t apply to the one true God because he has always existed. This may be difficult to comprehend, but when we start trying to understand God, we should expect to find something new.

First published on the St Andrew’s, Springfield website on 29 October 2022.

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