Faith for the Journey of Life

My Thoughts on Faith, Life, and 2,000+ Years of Catholicism / Christianity

01 October 2006

In the Beginning...

With one exception, everything and everyone has a beginning: the universe, the earth, people, civilizations, nations, ideas, movements, and so on. The one exception is He who began everything and His Son and His Spirit.

The universe and the earth began by God simply willing them into being. "In the beginning, when God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was a formless wasteland, and darkness covered the abyss, while a mighty wind swept over the waters. Then God said, 'Let there be light,' and there was light." (Genesis 1:1-3). "Of old you laid the earth's foundations; the heavens are the work of your hands," the Psalmist declares (Psalm 102:26). God had no material that He crafted into stars and planets and what not. He simply willed it to happen.

Since the creation of the earth and man, civilizations and kingdoms and empires and nations have begun. Ancient Sumeria began in Mesopotamia and ancient Egypt began along the Nile River over 5,000 years ago. The Roman Empire began with the end of the Roman Republic. The Byzantine Empire began with a split from the Roman Empire in the Fourth Century A.D. The colonization of the New World began with Christopher Columbus. The United States began with a Declaration of Independence in July 1776.

Great and small movements, beneficial and infamous ideas, and epochs of history have also had their beginnings: the Renaissance, the Enlightenment, the French Revolution, the Industrial Revolution, democracy, fascism, Communism.

We people have our beginnings. We begin with God and by God for God created each of us. "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you" (Jeremiah 1:5). Despite what the abortionists and the aetheists say, God begins our lives at conception in the wombs of our mothers with the cooperation of our parents.

All things and all people have beginnings. The one exception is God - Thrice Holy, One in Three Beings. God has no beginning because He simply exists in a way that no one outside of the Trinity can understand. God cannot have a beginning because to begin means to be within time and God exists outside of time. He created time so He cannot exist subject to time.

Similarly neither Jesus nor the Holy Spirit have beginnings. God did not create Jesus. Jesus has always been one in being with the Father. As St. John tells us, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God." (John 1:1-2). Emanating from God the Father and God the Son, the Holy Spirit also has no beginning.

Though Jesus has always existed one in being with the Father and has no eternal beginning, Jesus had several beginnings during his earthly life. He began his earthly journey at the Incarnation, conceived by the Holy Spirit in the womb of the Virgin Mary (Luke 1:26-38). He entered into his earthly life born of the Virgin Mary in Bethlehem (Luke 2:1-14; Matthew 1:25) . He begins his public ministry by preaching the Good News and by calling ordinary men to be his disciples (Matthew 4:12-17; John 1:35-51). He began his Church on the night before his Crucifixion when he instituted the Holy Eucharist (Luke 22:14-20).

We all begin with God but that does not mean we are with God today. When we enter this world, there a million things and people trying to separate us from God. There are countless distractions in this world: money, fame, sports, careers, entertainment, sin, etc. There are people and evil spiritual beings who purposefully try to wrest us from God. They try to deceive us and lead us astray and too often they are successful. Sometimes, we get separated from God through no fault of our own because there is no one to help us know God. Sometimes we just wander away from God because we take Him for granted or we get pre-occupied with the things of this world. Sometimes we get angry at God and willfully run away from Him.

If anything in the preceding paragraph applies to you, all is not lost. You can begin again with God. If you never knew God, you can begin a relationship with God. If you have turned away from God, you can have a new beginning with God. Open your heart to God and let Him begin to be a part of your life.

If you begin with God and stay with God, you will not have an end with God.


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