El poder de la Palabra de Dios

The power of the Word of God

"In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." These are the words with which God begins His revelation to humanity (Gen 1:1). The biblical story begins by confirming the existence of God, who has been present for eternity. As soon as this is established, the power of His word becomes evident. History allows us to see how His word not only has the power to create, but also the power to organize what is created (Gen I), because "the Word of God is not only powerful, but it has a purpose." It is one thing to create, and quite another to create in an orderly manner. God (and therefore His word) is not only powerful, but omnipotent, and He is not only omnipotent, but also intentional. In theology it is said that God is simple (not simplistic); that is, everything that God is is throughout His entire being. If God is infinite—and He is—then His love is infinite, as are His grace and the rest of His attributes. If God is omnipotent, then so is His word. And because God is intentional, when God speaks, what He communicates is a word full of purpose and power, which will always accomplish what He desires. This is how the universe originated: first in the mind of God and then through the power of His word. Just as God organized the universe with His word, so He would organize the nations. The creation of nations and the establishment of their moral foundation was His idea in the first place (Gen 11, Acts 17:26).

When God speaks, there is response to His word because His word is both an expression of His will and “an expression of Himself.” When God speaks, things move, events happen, mountains shake, waters recede. The word of God is effective and fulfills His purpose. When God said, "Let the waters under the heavens be gathered into one place," the waters were gathered into one place and the dry land was revealed. There was no chaos under the sky when the waters moved. This is the organizational power of the word of God. When God said, "Let the earth produce vegetation," trees appeared where they should and produced fruit. When God said, "Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night," the sun and moon were created of the size and distance necessary to sustain life. A slightly larger or slightly closer moon would have caused tides so high that they would flood the planet and shift its axis dangerously. There was no confusion before the voice of God. When God finished creating the universe, he looked at everything he had made and concluded that "it was very good" (Gen 1:31). This was to be expected, since "the works express the mind, spirit, will and character of the creator." Thus, what God had made was good because it reflected Him. When God speaks, He emanates a power capable of creating what He intends. That's what God said through the prophet Isaiah in 55:11: "So shall My word be that comes out of My mouth; it shall not return to Me void unless I have accomplished what I desire and accomplished the purpose for which I sent it." This was true at the time of creation, and it was also true at the foot of Mount Sinai, when God gave His law to the people of Israel.

With this we can conclude that the word of God is powerful, but it is not simply a force. It is not like the force of gravity that attracts things downward but without ordering them as they fall. The word of God is not only powerful, but it is purposeful and of unquestionable authority. No voice is like His and no other power force has these characteristics. It is unique. When God spoke, what he created was not just a material universe, but a cosmos in perfect and intentional balance. Thus, the world became the stage where God planned to display His glory (theatrium gloriae), in the words of John Calvin.

Chance could not have created this because it lacks the intelligence to design, the purpose to organize, and all the qualities that an infinite Being possesses to create something from nothing. In fact, chance is only a possibility once events have occurred. Nothing had happened until God created the way he did. Chance has no power because it has no existence. But in the beginning there was God. He is the cause behind the effect, as he should be. If something exists, someone somewhere must have the power of existence, and that someone is Elohim, the creator God. His word is not only responsible for creating everything, but also for sustaining everything. The power of existence resides in God. This is what was revealed to us in Hebrews 1:3: "He is the brightness of His glory and the exact expression of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power."

Now, that same divine creative word is the same one that established the formation of the people of Israel on Mount Sinai. Nations are not capable of existing without an organizing and sustaining power that provides them with direction, stability, integration and hope. This is what a congruent worldview must detail. When a worldview is articulated and defended before an unbelieving world, many pay attention. This worldview can even open the door to the presentation of the full gospel.

The Ten Commandments represent the ethical principles necessary for the organization of society. More than two million Jews wandering in the desert were organized as a nation based on these commandments. Although the people did not obey them to the letter, these commandments taught the people how to live and created a framework to help them live in a civilized way, as later happened with the nations of the West. These commandments are part of the word of God, which is power in action. God "upholds all things by the word of His power" (Heb 1:3). The apostle Paul, speaking to the citizens of Athens, who did not know God, told them that "from one he made all the nations of the world" (Acts 17:26) and in context he adds "for in Him we live and move and we exist" (Acts 17:28). The power that sustains the entire universe, including humanity, resides in God.

God and His word never exist separately. His word is a perfect reflection of who He is. As John Frame states:

So the word is God. Wherever we find the word of God, we find God. When we find God, we find His word. We cannot find God without His word, or His word without God. The word of God and God are inseparable. In fact, His word is the presence of God. Wherever the word of God is preached, read or heard, there God will be.

There are two things that represent the essence of God: His name and His word. For this reason, the psalmist says in Psalm 138:2, "For You have magnified Your word according to all Your name."

This article was adapted from a portion of the book The word of God to transform a nation , published by Poiema Publicaciones .
You can download a free sample by visiting this link.

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