Life In Himself – Brian Gates
“For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son also to have life in himself” (John 5:26).
Where did God come from? Or, who made God? It’s a very good question. An important question. I dare say most of us have wrestled with it on occasion. We might rightly tell the curious child asking such things that no one created God- He always was and always will be.
But we can’t fully answer the question. Our finite, created minds are too limited to truly grasp the Infinite, the Eternal. Yet it is something that we must come to grips with if we are to make some sense of things.
Theologians use the term aseity, which comes from the Latin a se meaning “from Himself”, to describe the self-existence of God. The term itself isn’t important. What is important is understanding that Lord is of and from Himself. He has no origin; He is un-caused. As the John 5 verse states above, the Father has life in Himself. And not only the Father, but the Son also. Self-existence applies to all three persons of the Trinity, for they are One.
Think about how awesome the words of Exodus 3:14a are: “God said to Moses, ‘I AM WHO I AM.’” Yahweh just IS… We would always do well to let that sink in a bit.
This is an attribute of the Lord that is necessary for His other attributes to be what they are. How can God be all-powerful, holy, unchangeable, all-knowing, perfect, etc, if He also had an origin?
“The God who made the world and everything in it, being Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in temples made by man, 25 nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything” (Act 17:24-25, emphasis mine).
While we are dependent in all things, He is self-sufficient and self-independent. The Lord is complete in and of Himself, lacking nothing.
That He self-exists also means that He is outside of time. He has no beginning and no end. He created all things that exist, including time (John 1:1, Genesis 1:1). Thus, He does not change over time (immutable). Being outside of time, He sees the beginning from the end (omniscient).
Considering this, what grace has been given to us that our perfect Savior humbled Himself by becoming human for our sake!
These things can be difficult to wrestle with, but like finding a precious jewel after long digging, our efforts are rewarded. Our desire as believers in Christ is to know Him more and more supremely. As we study and meditate on Scripture, the Spirit teaches us and gives us understanding. And, while we’ll never be able to fully comprehend all these things this side of glory, we begin to understand more and more, and our view of Him is enlarged. The more we see Him as He is, the more we see His resplendent glory. Then the more our souls cry out praise to our King!
Lord, may our view of You become greater as we read your Word. Increase our understanding of Yourself that we would see You higher and proclaim the glory of Jesus, our Lord.