There is an order to the universe
As we leave behind the hot summer months and enter the fall season, we naturally shift gears as families and individuals. The school year and all its activities have begun.
I remember as I was growing up being a little sad as summer was coming to an end. But I also remember settling into the school year and how much I enjoyed reconnecting with friends I hadn’t seen over the summer.
Another one of my memories of this time of year is the challenge and excitement of the classroom. Once I was back in school, I always enjoyed learning about new things. There is such a richness to the world and all its wonders. There is so much to learn about the universe, history, science, languages, literature, art and so many other areas of knowledge.
Over the years our culture has changed in significant ways as it has become much more secular. Many of the things we value have been redefined and attitudes have shifted. As new and conflicting ideas compete for our attention, some basic confusions have taken hold. One of these confusions is that objective truth does not really exist. Reality is increasingly seen as fragmented and even random.
One of the great truths that gets lost in our secular way of life is that the universe is intelligible. In other words, there is an order to the universe. If this were not so, science would not be possible, physics would not be possible, architecture and engineering would not be possible, the practice of medicine would not be possible, and the list goes on and on.
There is an intelligibility to reality and to human existence because of the Creator. When God made the heavens and the earth — all things visible and invisible — he did so through his Son, the Word. The Word (in Greek, Logos) is the ordering principle through whom all things came into being. Because of this ordering principle, reality is intelligible. The physical universe can be measured and observed by scientific inquiry.
The spiritual world is no less ordered, but our ability to penetrate it on our own is more limited. However, because God, in his great love for us, has chosen to reveal himself to us, there is much that we do know and can reflect on. We know, for example, that the Word through whom all things were made became incarnate of the Blessed Virgin Mary and lived among us. He spoke to us of the meaning of human existence. He showed us the Father’s love and taught us to repent of our sins. He went to the cross to defeat sin and death for us.
He rose from the dead and spoke of the coming of the Holy Spirit. Jesus Christ is the key to creation and the key to human existence. As we begin another school year,we rejoice that we can unlock the secrets of the universe through our study of science, mathematics, literature, the arts, and other disciplines. We also rejoice that the Word became flesh and rescued us from the misery of sin and death in his saving sacrifice on the cross and his glorious resurrection!
Do not let our now secular culture confuse you about this basic truth. There is an order to creation and redemption, and the key to both is a person, Our Lord Jesus Christ.