Heidelberg Catechism Devotional Q26

Q.26. What do you believe when you say, “I believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth”?

AThat the eternal Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who out of nothing created heaven and earth and everything in them, who still upholds and rules them by his eternal counsel and providence, is my god and Father because of Christ his Son. 
I trust him so much that I do not doubt he will provide whatever I need for body and soul, and he will turn to my good whatever adversity he send me in this sad world.
He is able to do this because he is almighty God; he desires to do this because he is a faithful Father.


When most of us think of creation, we immediately think of the Genesis story and the first seven days that are recorded.  But there are many Scriptures that speak of God as the creator.  Read Psalm 33:6-9.  In this Psalm, God’s power is extolled as the one who created the world, but not like we create things.  Human beings are more in the assembly process, we take the things we see and arrange them into new configuration so that we can use them.  We are like children sitting down with a tub of Legos® and making a car or a plane or a spaceship.  But God is remarkably different, he didn’t sit down with already existing materials, he created the materials.  He spoke and the elements of our physical and spiritual world came into existence.  Nothing existed and then it all existed, not just in elemental form but in completed array.  There is nothing like it that we can compare in our physical world.  God is wholly different from us and that is why we must worship him.  Read Acts 14:15-18.


Continuing with our Lego® analogy from yesterday, when a child makes a toy from these blocks, they are protective of it.  They play with it, ensure that it is safe and refuse to let another dismantle it until they are ready to move on in the next phase of creation.  This is similar to God, since God created everything he cares about the universe he brought into existence.  Since his powerful word is able to bring things into being and to cause them to cease to exist, then he must be actively involved in this world. He rules over and shepherds the creation towards his ultimate purpose – the glorification of Christ.  Read Psalm 104 to find a list of thing that God continues to do in this world and after that read Matthew 6:28-30 and be assured of his concern for your personal needs.


What is truly amazing is that God, who created everything out of nothing, chooses to be in relationship with us and to be our God.  This was first explained very explicitly to Abraham.  Read Genesis 17:6-8.  In this passage God acts in his world by establishing a relationship with Abraham to be his God, his protector, his benefactor, but that same relationship is extended to us through Christ.  The God of heaven and earth chooses to relate to us in blessing through Christ.  Read Galatians 3:29 and Ephesians 1:4-6.


Because God relates to us and says we are his children in Christ, how should we respond?  We should respond just like all children raised in caring families do, by looking to God for our needs and trusting that he will supply all our needs.  A few days ago we read one of Jesus teachings on God’s provision, today we will read Luke 12:22-31.  Christ affirms our value in the eyes of God as his created children.  We are of great worth, so we must trust that precious things will be cared for and nurtured, protected and provided with all they need for a life of love.  Since God created the world and everything in it, he knows what our bodies and our souls need, so he provides food and clothes as well as spiritual refreshment in Christ and the Holy Spirit.  There is nothing missing since ‘every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms’ is ours ‘in Christ.’ (Ephesians 1:3).


Yesterday’s teaching sounds wonderful but what about the hardships and difficulties we all face in this world: The sickness, the emotional pain, the betrayals, the financial difficulties, even the loss of loved ones, to name but a few?  Even these things come from the hand of God.  That is a hard teaching to swallow, but if we remember that God provides what is needed for body and soul, these trials can be seen in a new light, for each of them casts us upon God in greater and greater dependence.  Each of them turns us toward God and causes us to lean further into his arms of mercy and grace, they cause us to repent of our sin, to acknowledge how often we try to live on our own power and to skate by without every ascribing glory to the God who feeds us and allows us to live and breathe.  Read Romans 8:26-28.


We have covered a lot of territory this week, but we must close by turning back to God.  As creator, he is almighty and has plenty of power to make all things work for our best interest and to draw us into his cosmic plan of redemption.  Furthermore, he will do this because of his love for his children.  He loves us as a Father loves his children, or a hen her brood.  We are his offspring, the fruit of his good pleasure.  Read Romans 8:31-39 and Matthew 7:9-11.


About Scott Roberts

pastor of Hope in Christ Church, Bellingham, WA
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