Russell and Duenes

Nothing of What Exists Had to Exist

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I was looking at one of my sons the other day, and as I looked at him, I found myself just pondering his existence in wonderment. I was struck by the fact that, biologically speaking, he exists because of a man and woman’s seed. Yet, the seed alone cannot explain his existence. He is so much more than a mere biological product. For our seed did not produce his mind and soul, did not imbue him with personality and character, did not create in him spiritual yearnings and desires. The coming together of a sperm and egg did not confer on him him his utter uniqueness in this world, both physically and spiritually. He did not have to exist . . . and yet he does. And he does simply and utterly because God chose to bring about his existence. In love, God brought him into being. God used means, of course, but those means do not change the reality.

And they do not change the fact that absolutely nothing, other than God himself, needed to exist. When I look outside and see the snowflakes beginning to fall, the trees, the squirrel running across the yard, the houses and other buildings; when I see the sun, moon and stars, the fish in the ocean, the majestic mountains and the raging rivers, the bolts of lightning and the torrential rains, and the various works of man’s hands, there is no reason they should exist, rather than not exist. Their existence is, thus, a great mystery and glory, a truth beyond rational discovery, an unknowable wonder, a “divine, magical, terrifying, and ecstatic reality,” to put it in C.S. Lewis’ terms.

It is this wonder of sheer existence which, as John Piper says, helps us become alive to life.



Written by Michael Duenes

November 15, 2014 at 8:34 am

Posted in Duenes, Reflections

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