WCF 2.2

The Westminster Confession of Faith

2. God has all life, glory, goodness, blessedness, in and of himself; he alone is in and to himself all-sufficient, not standing in need of any creatures which he has made, nor deriving any glory from them, but only manifesting his own glory in, by, to, and upon them. He is the only fountain of all being, of whom, through whom, and to whom are all things, and he has complete sovereign dominion over them, to do through them, for them, or upon them whatever pleases him. In his sight all things are open and manifest; his knowledge is infinite, unerring, and independent of the creature, so that nothing is contingent or uncertain to him. He is most holy in all his counsels, in all his works, and in all his commands. To him is due, from angels, mankind and every other creature, whatever worship, service, or obedience God is pleased to require of them. (WCF 2.2)

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to try and count all the sand on the beach or all the stars in the sky? Well I’d say that if you’ve had that idea, I could pretty much guess your next thought and that would be “that’s impossible!!!”. Well to try and take our thoughts into the realm of the Godhead is a close comparison. We can think on these things, talk on these things, even speak theologically correctly on these things but getting a clear picture in your mind’s eye of all that is taking place is pretty much near impossible (Isa 55:8-9, Rom 11:34, 2 Cor 12:1-4). This week, by considering the whole council of scripture, the confession takes our thoughts again heavenward, pulling back the curtin so that we might think on our God and His perfect ways in Himself and His world.

First, we see that all that there is, all that has been and will be, seen and unseen, in this world and in the next, comes from God Himself. That’s because God is life and all life comes from Him (Jn 1:1-5, 5:26; Acts 17:28a). And the life that comes from Him is good (Gen 1:1-31, Jam 1:17).

Second, God is completely independent from both His creatures and creation. In other words (or as theologians call it) this paragraph is talking about God’s “aseity” which is to say God is in no way dependent on His creatures or creation. No, He is not dependent on us to “make” Him what He is or (let’s say) to think Him good; He in no way needs us to be God. He is life, life comes from Him and it is good because He is who He is (Ex 3:14, Ps 119:68, Rom 9:5) and thus with that said, He reveals His goodness through all of what He has made (Rom 11:36, 1 Cor 8:6, 1 Tim 6:15-16).

Third, because God is the creator of all that there is, He is in complete control of it all (Matt 10:29- 31, Rom 8:28, Rev 4:11). Now this can be incredibly hard for us “mere creatures” to wrap our minds around, but this universe is in no way random or sporadic with many different options or endings where we get to “choose our own adventure” (Eph 1:11). No, God who created all that there is, has only one end in mind and He is working all things out to that end and for his own glory (Rom 11:36, Col 1:16-17). However with all that said, fourth, we run into a grave error if we think that God is like some divine watchmaker who just wound up the clock and let it tick. No, the whole council of scripture reveals that God is somehow intrinsically working with and within his creatures. This is incredibly complex to think about. On the one hand, no one is a preprogrammed robot and living against their will, yet on the other hand, there is no one independent of God working outside of His will, no we all act according to our nature yet nothing is contingent or uncertain to him (Ez 11:5, Acts 15:18 c.f Heb 4:13).

Fifth, no matter who you are or what you are for that matter (a spirit or human), we owe our good life giving God the worship He is due and that is to give Him all that we are (Deut 6:5, 30:2b c.f. Rev 5:12-14). We don’t see that as a reality right now in our world, but there will come a day where every knee shall bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the Glory of our Heavenly Father (Phil 2:10-11).

Published: March 25, 2024

Updated: March 25, 2024