How can God have no beginning and no end?
Published 12:52 pm Wednesday, May 10, 2023
“He’s just really old,” says Anna, age 11.
The prophet Daniel referred to God as the ancient of days, but you won’t find any birthday parties for God in the Bible. Kevin, 10, says it’s not age but form: “God is kinda like a circle, except he has power.”
“It is very hard to understand how God can have no beginning and no end,” says Marci, 9. “But here’s the trick: God is everlasting. He can keep on making the days and live through every one of them. He can never die.”
No tricks necessary, says Sarah, 11: “He is the alpha and omega, the beginning and the end. He has been, and He always will be.”
It’s difficult for finite creatures to imagine life free from the limitations of time and space. It’s a bit like fish in the ocean trying to understand the lives of land creatures. Because we’re confined to time and space, we tend to impose those limitations upon God.
Try imagining a realm outside time and space, and you may come to the same conclusion as Tyler, 11: “Our brains aren’t designed to think that greatly.” Furthermore, adds Kyle, 12, “My brain cannot comprehend God’s majesty.”
I nominate Tyler and Kyle for the Nobel Prize for Humility. I agree that God’s majesty is too great to totally comprehend, but let’s look at two ways in which we can reason our way from finite creation to an infinite, intelligent God.
The cosmological argument for God says that everything in the universe is an effect of some cause. Therefore, the universe must have a cause. Aristotle called the first cause of the universe “the unmoved mover.”
The teleological argument for God says that intelligently designed things must have an intelligent designer. The world has an intelligent design. Therefore, the world has an intelligent designer. If watches must have watchmakers, the world must have a world-maker.
“God is before the beginning and after the end,” says Alex, 9. Thank you, Alex, for this profound statement.
If you could watch a parade from a high mountain, you would have a different perspective from someone viewing it on the ground. You would see the beginning and the end at the same time.
When Moses asked God his name, he said, “I am who I am.” When Jesus said, “Before Abraham was, I am,” his inquisitors picked up stones to throw at him. Why? They knew only God could make such a claim. Later, the Apostle Paul wrote of Jesus, “All things were created through Him and for Him” (Colossians 1:16).
The question “How old is God?” doesn’t apply since God is not limited by time. He’s no older this year than he was last year because infinity plus one is still infinity, says theologian Millard J. Erickson.
Neither is God limited by space. While some may imagine God as a divine superman flying from place to place faster than the speed of light, in reality he has access to his entire creation at the same time.
What a comfort to know that God is all over the world across different time zones answering prayers, taking care of his people and providing for his creation. How can the one who has no beginning or end do all this?
“Because He is God!” shouts Derin, 9.
Think about this: God is.
Remember this truth: “Jesus said to them, ‘Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM’” (John 8:58).
Ask this question: Does God’s eternalness bring you comfort?
(Kids Talk About God is designed for families to study the Bible together. Research shows that parents who study the Bible with their children give their character, faith and spiritual life a powerful boost.)