In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.
And God said, "Let there be light," and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. God called the light "day," and the darkness he called "night." And there was "evening, and there was morning" the first day. (Genesis chapter 1 verse 1-5 NIV)
So wait... God spoke "let there be light," and there was light?! There was nothing, then He spoke and there was something? Hmm... let's back-track a bit. I'm just going to take a bit of creative license in this rhetoric, feel free to follow.
So God had created this formless, empty, dark deep called earth, and then this new idea came into His mind. It twisted and evolved as ideas developed on other ideas, moulding elements into a growing shape. He continued to mull over this notion, checking different angles and theories until the entire concept of light, with all its laws, repercussions and realities, was fully constructed.
Then the scripture reveals a deep truth, a transient power that we, humans created in God's likeness, have rarely tapped into. He spoke this idea into existence. He spoke this concept into reality. He spoke, with the full power of a completely developed thought behind the words, and the power of this completed thought met the power of spoken word, and reality was changed. He didn't just say the word "light" and creation figured itself out, developing by random steps to become what we now know as light. No,
He thought up the entire concept of light and then expressed its absolute reality in spoken word, and that power is what we call creation.
Maybe our words have more power than we realise. Maybe when words have the weight of deep thought behind them, they have the power to change things. Maybe the first step for an idea to become a reality is to fully understand it, to deeply know it, and then speak it. Maybe creation is far simpler and far more profound than we realise. Maybe I should stop saying maybe.
So I'm a musician. It's what I do, it's who I am. Now, for centuries musical philosophers and writers (Yes, musicians that think! Hard to believe...) have been intrigued with this idea of the power of sound. Surely it's deeper than just frequencies hitting our ear, which tells the brain different patterns that it discerns as sound. Look at how God created â with sound.
Then, of course, there is string theory: (a far too complicated subject that I know far too little about to divulge in this article) basically a scientific hypothesis that particles are joined with tiny string (about a millionth of a billionth of a billionth of a billionth of a centimetre), and like the strings on a guitar, this string is stretched under tension and vibrates at a certain pitch.
It's very theoretical, but the idea that every particle in the universe is vibrating at a certain pitch, resonates particularly with the Christian musician who believes God created the world through sound. And I like to think this unlocks such incredible possibilities for us, as beings created in the likeness of God.
As a song-writer, what am I tapping into when I bind my deepest beliefs to lyrics, and fix them upon a melody that beautifully expresses my heart? When Paul says in Romans chapter 10 verse 10 (NIV) "For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved", what is he revealing about the power of these two phenomenon's united?
I believe when we take the power of internal belief and spoken word, and tie that to a beautiful melody, it is inexplicably and immeasurably powerful.
God said, "Let there be light," and there was light. What say you?
Daniel J. Mathew is studying music at Sydney's Wesley Institute and serves as a volunteer for the senior high youth ministry of Hillsong Church, City Campus.
Daniel's article archive may be viewed here www.pressserviceinternational.org/daniel-mathew.html