- Rick LoPresti
The goldilocks God
Einstein's famous theory of relativity is considered the greatest revelation of science. It is also known as the theory of relativity or the space/time continuum, and is expressed by the equation e=mc2. It has to do with traveling near the speed of light over vast distances, and the effects of gravity on the perception of time. This theory is hard to understand because it describes reality in a way we are not used to perceiving it. Yet God is beyond this theory because He created time and space (Gen 1). He is eternal and infinite (Ps 139). We cannot comprehend eternity or infinity, but that is where God lives (Is 57:15). He has no beginning or ending in time or space. To God, there is no yesterday, today, or tomorrow. There are no clocks or calendars. To Him, 1,000 years is like a day, and a day like 1,000 years (Ps 90:4, 2Pet 3:8). There are no distances to God. Traveling at the speed of light is nothing to God, for He created light by speaking it into existence. He is light (Jn 8:12, 1Jn 1:5). We talk and pray about God moving, but that is not literally possible for God. He cannot move because He cannot go to a place where He is not already. In a certain sense, He is even in hell (Psalm 139:8), which He made (Mt 25:41). God does not move. He concentrates His presence in certain places at certain times. He manifested Himself on Mount Sinai so that the mountain shook and burned (Ex 19:18). Yet He was also at the base of the mountain with the children of Israel. God’s ultimate manifestation is His coming in the flesh as a man, the Lord Jesus Christ (Jn 1:1-3 & 14, Jn 14:7-11, 2Cor 5:19, Col 2:9, 1Tim 3:16). While He walked the earth in the flesh, He did not cease to still be the God that fills all space (Jn 3:13). The same is true to a different degree in all who have been filled with the Holy Ghost. The Spirit of God is in all these people, but still is everywhere else as well.
There is another scientific theory called quantum mechanics, pioneered by Max Planc. It also seems strange to us because it is not the way we perceive reality, but it deals with the way things work on the extreme opposite end of the scale - the sub-atomic. It has to do with the way electrons move in the tiny space inside of atoms. It seems to indicate that the electrons do not travel in strict orbits around the nucleus but have the probability of moving through space and appearing elsewhere differently than what we experience. Einstein did not like this theory because it seems too random to explain an ordered universe, but so far it appears to be true. Just as Einstein’s theory shows us our perception of time can be altered, quantum mechanics shows us our perception of space can be too. How do angels move, appear, and disappear? How did Jesus pass through walls and disappear after His resurrection (Lk 24:32 & 36, Jn 20:19). Is it possible that these scientific theories seem strange to us because they are taking glimpses into the spiritual world which cannot be explained with natural means (Rom 8, 1Cor 1-2)?
Yet God also created all of that by speaking. All of these things are no mystery to Him. The Bible even says God humbles Himself just to look at the universe (Ps 113:6). God is not outside space and time, but He is above them. He operates in them, but is not contained by or subject to them. Even when He walked the earth in the flesh, He could decide when to operate in His divine power and when to subject Himself to the limitations of man (Philippians 2). He slept in a boat as a man, but awoke to command the storm that was troubling the water as God (Prov 30:4, Mk 4:35-41). We can only comprehend this in measure by faith (Heb 11:1-6), the revelation of the scriptures, and the Holy Ghost.
We are never more foolish than when we think we are smarter than God, and we are never more faithless than when we think something is too big or too small for Him. God sees things differently than we do. His thoughts and His ways are so far beyond ours that we cannot comprehend them (Is 55:8-9). We experience life in space and time, and we are limited by that perception of reality. God is not. The Syrians thought God could only help Israel when they fought in the mountains; and if they fought them in the valleys, He could not (1Ki 20:20-28). God showed them otherwise. A Roman centurion asked Jesus to come and perform a healing in his house, but then asked Him to just speak the word from where He was (Mt 8:5-10). He realized space did not matter to God. Abraham was 75 and his wife Sarah was 65 when God promised Him he would become a father (Gen 12:4, Gen 17:1 & 17). Yet they had no children. God waited another 25 years before He fulfilled this promise. By that time, it seemed even more impossible to Abraham and Sarah. They thought time had eliminated the possibility of God doing what He said. God showed them He was not subject to the effects of time, and Isaac was born after all.
God is not too big to consider our needs, no matter how small they seem to us compared to Him. There is also no problem bigger than God. To illustrate just how big God is: the moon is about 240,000 miles from the earth. You have to travel at the speed of a bullet for four days to get there. Yet that is nothing. The sun is 93 million miles from the earth. Yet that is nothing. The sun is a star. Then next closest star to the earth is called Alpha Centurai. It is a group of stars four light years from earth. You have to travel 186,000 miles per second for four years to get there. Yet that is nothing. Astronomers estimate there are 100 billion stars in the Milky Way galaxy. Yet that is nothing. They also estimate there are 100 billion galaxies in the universe. God made everything off earth out of nothing in one day by speaking, and it is described with only six words in Genesis 1: “and He made the stars also”. He is the goldilocks God – not too big to help us, and not too small to handle anything. We just need to trust that He loves us and can handle it all.