“Instead of the accustomed idea of a mindless and endless evolutionary change to which we can neither add nor subtract, I shall suppose the universe guided by an Intelligence which, as Aristotle said of Greek drama, requires a beginning, a middle, and an end. I think this will save me from the cynicism expressed by Bertrand Russell before his death, when he said, “There is darkness within, and when I die there will be darkness without. There is no splendor, no vastness anywhere, only triviality for a moment and then nothing.”
Intelligence requires a beginning, a middle, and an end. No thought is fully conceived without these three parts. All of life is a drama, and these are its fundamental parts: beginning, middle end. The Bible and all of creation start at the very beginning–“In the beginning God created…” If any thought is to prevent cynicism, surely this is it!
God requires a beginning, a middle, and an end of all of us–in our lives, in the universe. We all have a set storyline, a pattern and a path to follow. Knowing that there will be an end that has been planned from the beginning gives us hope and allows us to enjoy the vastness and the splendor we see here. My heart breaks for Bertrand Russell, who, in his blindness, could not see the beauty and the evidence of God in nature. I think of the places I have been where I see vastness and splendor–the Isle of Skye, the American West, the ocean and the endless skies, and I am amazed. God has granted us these things in order that we might see their splendor and praise the one who is more splendid. We should enjoy the vastness on this earth, even if this earthly majesty truly is only a triviality in the face of an eternity that is grander than any we could create or imagine.
“Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways!
‘For who has known the mind of the Lord,
or who has been his counselor?’
‘Or who has given a gift to him
that he might be repaid?’
For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen.”