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Sometime back I wrote about how nature itself testifies of God, providing Scriptural evidence of this as well. This time I want to zero in on one specific item in His amazing creation: The atom. We have heard about atoms most of our lives, studied about them in school, and so on. Let’s take another look at atoms and see their connection to God.


Atoms are the basic building blocks of physical matter. The atom has a nucleus made up of two types of particles of nearly equal mass—the proton, which carries a positive electrical charge, and the very slightly larger neutron, which carries no charge. Depending on the element, the numbers of these particles in the nuclei vary but are nearly always evenly divided between protons and neutrons. Orbiting the nucleus at various distances are electrons, extremely small particles which carry a negative electrical charge.


Hydrogen, in its natural state, alone among the elements has just one proton and no neutrons, although variant forms of it (isotopes) have either one or two neutrons along with the single proton. It also has one electron, unique as well among the atoms of the various elements. The number of electrons orbiting an atom determines whether or not it can combine with atoms of other elements, and if it is able to combine, how easily it can do so. Beyond this elementary sketch, things get complicated.


What is interesting is this: Every element has its own set of characteristics. Some are solid, some are liquid, and some are gaseous. Some are relatively harmless while others are dangerous, even radioactive in a few cases. They all have different freezing, melting, and boiling points, et cetera. Also, atoms of different elements can come together in various combinations to form chemical compounds. For all this variety, all the elements and compounds have one thing in common: Their building blocks are all the same things—atoms.


Here are but three examples of the remarkable variety found in different elements and compounds that are all made by these same building blocks. First, water. It is made of hydrogen and oxygen. Hydrogen is a colorless, odorless, highly flammable gas. Oxygen is also highly flammable, colorless, and odorless, but unlike hydrogen, oxygen is vital for human and animal life on earth (plants breathe carbon dioxide and give off oxygen). Two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom combined together form water, which, along with breathable air, is among the most vital substances in the world. Humans, animals, and plants all consume water to survive, and water vapor in the air provides all the different precipitation types. Rain and melted snow, in turn, help in the provision of drinking water, and they also make crops and other plants thrive.


Next, if you add just one oxygen atom to the mix you get peroxide, which, among its other uses, has a cleansing and disinfecting effect. Remember how you put it on minor cuts and scratches. Now for our third example: Table salt, made of sodium and chlorine. Sodium is a soft metal which explodes in the presence of water. Chlorine is a yellow-green, highly toxic gas which can cause serious lung damage and even death if inhaled. If one atom each is combined you get table salt, which is essential to life.


These three examples alone are mindboggling. How is it that atoms, the building blocks of physical matter, can, in various sizes and combinations, produce such an astounding variety of results? God. All this did not evolve, it did not just happen. God created it all! We now turn to the Bible and notice some interesting passages which give us a picture of this process. First, to chapter 11 of Hebrews, the great faith chapter in God’s Word:


Hebrews 11:3:  By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.


That is very interesting. How did Paul, the writer of Hebrews (as attested in Eusebius’ Ecclesiastical History), know that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible? By the inspiration and revelation of the Holy Spirit, of course. There was no other way someone living in the ancient world could have known with such certainty any details at all about how things are made at the most basic level. Ancient philosophers in Greece and India theorized of matter being made of tiny, invisible particles, but coming from pagans, this was born of intellect, not holy wisdom as in Paul’s case. While we are on this passage of Scripture, note the statement “word of God.” In the New Testament Greek, “word” here is rhema (HRAY-ma), a word that is spoken. This is important, as by speaking God created everything. All three persons of the Godhead—the Father, the Son (also known as the Word), and the Holy Spirit—were present at and involved with the creation of the universe.


Genesis 1:1-3:  In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light…


We can see God speaking and creating here, and certainly the Spirit of God is mentioned, but where is Jesus? In the very first verse there is an unspoken pair of Hebrew letters, alef and taw, the first and last letters of the Hebrew alphabet. These correspond to alpha and omega, the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet. What is one of Jesus’s titles? The Alpha and the Omega!: See Revelation 1:8. And we see God speaking the creation into existence. Remember, Jesus Christ is also called the Word, and He is not only the creative Agent of all the universe, He is also the One who holds it all together:


John 1:1-3, 14:  In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made…And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.


1 John 5:7-8:  For there are three that bear witness in heaven: the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one. And there are three that bear witness on earth: the Spirit, the water, and the blood; and these three agree as one.


Colossians 1:17:  And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist.


Hebrews 1:1-3a:  God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds; who being the brightness of His glory and the express image of His person, and upholding all things by the word of His power,…


First we see the term for “word” in the Greek in the John and 1 John passages is not rhema, but logos (LOG-os), which in its simplest form means a word uttered by a living voice which embodies a conception or idea. In Christ, the Word, is embodied a myriad of concepts and ideas in connection with God and His interaction with all of creation: The making of all created things, the salvation of man, and so on. In the Colossians passage the word “consist” in Greek is synestemi (soon-EHS-tem-ee), which in this context carries the idea that in Christ all things are made. In the Hebrews passage the word “upholding” derives from the Greek word phero (FER-o), which in this context means to bear up, that is, uphold (keep from falling), showing that Christ also preserves the creation, the entire universe and everything in it.


In the Scriptures we covered we have seen the implied existence of what we now know to be atoms, the fact that God spoke all things into existence, that Jesus Christ is His creative agent, and that Jesus not only was the One through which God the Father made everything, He is also the one who holds it all together. When you read the Genesis creation account and see God saying, “Let there be light” and it is, and speaking the various other parts of the creation into being, whatever He calls and says about them, they are what He says and they do what He says. Land cannot be anything other than land and it cannot do anything other than what land does, sea creatures cannot be anything other than sea creatures and they cannot do anything other than what sea creatures do, and so forth.


We can conclude, then, that all elements and compounds are what they are and do what they do in spite of being made up of the same building blocks is because they are being and doing what God said they are and told them to do. Think also of how Christ holds all of creation together and of the terrible energies released when a uranium atom is split (atomic bomb) or when hydrogen atoms are combined (hydrogen bomb). Think of the power of the Holy Spirit as He operates. God is most definitely the Creator of all things, and the atoms are truly His building blocks.



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