Presbyterian theologian Samuel Baird comments on Genesis 1:1

In the beginning God…

“With this announcement the Spirit of God commences the sacred volume. He is about to put upon permanent record a revelation, intended to answer to answer all those questions which spontaneously spring, in the depths of the human soul, concerning our highest and eternal interests, – a revelation respecting the nature of God, the cause and the remedy of our ruinous estate, the purpose for which life is given, the immortality of man, and the alternative states of eternity, – themes which have perplexed and bewildered philosophers and sages in every age. The first line of the first page of this blessed book announces Him, whose nature and whose works are the theme of the whole. It unveils in sudden light a glorious One, whose luster increases through every page; like a morning sun, growing continually in radiant majesty, pouring abroad a flood of unapproachable glory, alone in a starless firmament. When the student of the sacred volume reads, in that first line, the sublime announcement, ‘In the beginning, God’ – he, at one bound, ascends a height as far above that lofty Olympus where fabled Jove sat enthroned, as the heavens are higher than the earth… Gazing abroad from this mountain pinnacle, – on the one hand is nothing but the eternity of God; on the other is the creation, just launching forth upon cycles, each one of which is the unfolding of a new chapter, in the revelation of the high and lofty One who inhabits that eternity.”

–Samuel Baird, The Elohim Revealed in the Creation and Redemption of Man. (Philadelphia: Parry and McMillan, 1860), pp. 51-52.

God’s Motive in Creation

“When, in the council of the blessed Three, creation was decreed, where shall we look for the motive of this determination? Certainly not to the creatures which as yet they have no existence. To operate as a motive, to exercise an influence, implies existence already possessed… Plainly, the motive in such a case, must be sought, not in the possible creatures, who may, as the result receive existence, but in the Being who is at once sole Existence and only Cause… Thus originating in the Creator’s will, as its only cause, the creation has been by him destined to one great end, the revelation of God, the shedding abroad of his own glory.”

–Baird, Elohim Revealed, pp. 83-84.

God’s Glory spoken in Creation

“To the instructed ear the universe is full of voices, telling each its own story, of the power, the wisdom, and the goodness of Him by Whom are all things. To the intelligent heart, which is attuned to such harmonies, nature is one grand instrument of many chords, which pours continually forth sublimest anthems burdened with his praise….and when, amid the descending shadows of evening, the voices of nature are hushed, and the tranquil stillness invites to contemplation or repose, even SILENCE herself takes up the strain, and the starry hosts unite in the general chorus of unending praise.”

–Baird, Elohim Revealed, pp. 91.

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Filed under Bible, Christian Theology, Quotable Quotes

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