Man exists in a physical world. He can see, feel, measure, weigh and analyze those objects and forces that surround him. For example, man today, with the help of complex scientific instruments and techniques, has discovered some of the intricate mechanisms of living organism. With each advancement in his knowledge, man watches the organized complexities of life grow progressively more awesome. What better evidence for the existence of a Creator!
But why can’t God’s presence be directly determined? Why can’t man see God as He really is? Why can’t we demonstrate with physical instruments that God exists? What is the composition and structure of God?
God’s appearance is revealed as being like that of man’s. Or, more correctly, God made man in His image, as stated in Genesis 1:26-27. And, according to Webster’s dictionary, an image is “an imitation or likeness of any person or thing, a copy or counterpart.”
God is further described in Rev. 1:13-16. His head and hair are a brilliant white, and His two eyes are like a flame of fire. His two feet are like burnished bronze or fine brass. He has two hands. His voice can thunder like the roar of Niagara Falls. And His face shines like the sun shining in full strength.
But, again, we pose the question, of what is God composed?
In the vision given to Peter, James, and John, Christ was transfigured into a being whose face shone like the sun (Matt. 17:2). God’s light was so great that Moses had to be placed in the cleft of a rock before God allowed Moses to see His back (Ex. 33:22). Moreover we read that the New Jerusalem of God’s Kingdom will need no sun or moon because God’s glory, His brightness will supply the needed light (Rev. 21:23).
Is God then composed of light?
It will now be shown that light, as science has defined the term is actually matter. Thus light is a physical, and not a spiritual entity.
As indicated below, the “light” which science has proved is a physical entity is not at all the same as the spiritual light which radiates from God and Christ or the symbolic light which Jesus of Nazareth brought into the world (John 1: 4-9).
Light is composed of tiny particles called photons. These photons, or light particles, travel in waves – like a ball being carried and beaten about by the waves of an ocean. More accurately a photon is both a particle and a wave at the same time. A specific-sized particle contains a certain quantity of material and thus is called a “quantum.” Also each specific quantum or photon travels with its own wave length. As a result the number of different quanta is equal to the number of all the different possible wavelengths of light, which is almost infinite. The actual pathway of the quantum (photon) is a spiral or helix, but on a flat plain this spiral becomes a wave. But there is nothing strange or peculiar about these properties because all atomic particles, such as electrons, protons, neutrons, etc., travel in waves. This is the principle behind the electron microscope which can be used to take pictures of atoms.
In going from the shortest to the longest wavelengths of photons we have gamma rays, x-rays, ultraviolet light, visible light, infrared light and finally radio waves. We can’t see ultraviolet, X-rays, or radio waves but we can see
“visible” wavelengths of light from purple to red. A fly or bee can see from ultraviolet to perhaps green, but it can’t see red light. Again the ability to see light and thus see various objects is a physical phenomenon. Sight involves physical and not spiritual substances.
One can visualize the photon as a “snowball.” The larger the “snowball,” the shorter will be its wavelength. Thus the X-ray, being composed of larger particles, would have more “snowflakes” in its structure than the smaller radio wave. Yet all photons, all light would travel with the same speed in a vacuum. But can the larger “snowball” or photon be broken up into smaller ones? Or can the smaller ones form larger ones?
In 1923 an American physicist, Dr. Arthur Compton, discovered that when an X-rays struck some object (matter), it was scattered. The scattered wave was longer than the original X-ray. One can visualize this phenomenon by continuing the analogy of the snowball for the photon. As the snowball, the photon hits the object (such as an electron), part of it is captured by the electron and the remainder is bounced off into space. As a result the original “snowball” is thus reduced to a smaller “snowball” because a fraction of it became a part of the electron. Consequently its wavelength is lengthened: for example, the original X-ray has now been transformed into visible light. The electron which was hit by the photon has become energized and thus it is hurled off into space in the same manner that a satellite would leave its orbit if its rocket engine were ignited. And in its race through space, the fraction of the original X-ray photon or “snowball” which was absorbed by the electron is released periodically. Thus the original “snowball” is broken up into many smaller ones. Consequently, photons appear to be composed of many component parts which can be broken up or combined together.
Light: A Different Form of Matter
If you burn a piece of wood, you can see flames of fire being released from the wood. As the carbon atoms in the wood combine with the oxygen atoms in the air, the outer electrons of these atoms fall into a “lower orbit” (lower energy levels). In doing so, they release photons. These photons radiate in all direction, and when some hit our eyes, we then “see” the fire. The different colors in a fire come from the presence of other elements which can make different-sized photons or “snowballs,” from those photons released by the burning carbon. Thus energy (that is, photons) is released and the total weight of the materials involved is reduced ever so slightly. Thus photons are a part of matter and can be released from matter.
Now apply this absolute law to the extremely high temperature situation as in the interior of the sun, where the energy of a photon can be equal to or greater than the total mass of two electrons. When such a photon passes by another particle, such as a proton or electron, then something extraordinary happens. The photon is converted into an electron (which is matter) and into anther particle called a positron (which is antimatter). The presence of a third particle is necessary in order that the extra momentum can be taken up.
The interconversion of energy and matter: Two particles collide and are completely transformed into energy (light and heat). One particle is matter (the electron) and the other is anti matter ( the positron).The explosion which results is much greater than either the hydrogen or atomic bomb where only a small part of matter is converted into energy. This proves that light is a physical substance, merely another form of matter.
If now an electron and a positron are shot towards each other, for a split second they will rotate around each other like a small atom and then finally collide. The collision annihilates both particles and produces pure energy (two photons or gamma rays). Thus photons can be converted into matter and anti-matter and, conversely, matter and anti-matter can be converted into photons.
Similarly, the snowball can be converted into a puddle of water. The building block is the same, but the appearance and physical makeup of the water is different. The same is true for the conversion of a photon into matter. Consequently, matter is made of altered photons. Or conversely, photons are altered particles of matter. Thus photons can be said to be basis of all matter, of the entire physical universe since photons can be both transformed into, and generated from, matter. As we have seen, Einstein’s classic equation E=mC2, theoretically demonstrated the equivalence of matter and energy. The atomic explosion at Alamogordo in 1945 experimentally proved it.
What Is God?
So where are we? What have we accomplished? We wanted to determine whether God is composed of physical light, since this is how He has appeared throughout the Bible.
We can safely answer in the negative. Because light (photons) is just as much a physical entity as flesh and blood are physical quantities. And God is not physical. He is Spirit (John 4:24).
Perhaps you have been taught or have just intuitively held opinion that Moses actually saw God (the One who became Jesus Christ) in all His glory and in His real form, but those who saw Jesus in the flesh did not. The logic for this conclusion is that God supposedly manifested Himself to Moses as pure light, whereas in the body of Jesus He manifested Himself only as flesh and blood. This reasoning is wrong. The Form that Moses saw was just as physical as the man Jesus; the only difference was that Moses saw closer representation, a more direct physical manifestation of the full spiritual glory of God.
God states in Isa. 45:7 that He forms (creates) light. Light is part of God’s physical creation. Scientific studies have shown that even though light can travel about 670 million miles per hour (186,000 miles per second), it would take a beam of light billions of years to travel across the universe. Therefore, God can’t be composed of light, otherwise how would He have been able to create the universe in any reasonable span of time? If God had to travel at – and be limited by the speed of light, it would have taken Him billions of years to create the universe. And when He had finished creating the final portion, other earlier parts would have already burned themselves out.
Furthermore, God could not be in full control of His creation, He could not be the Sustainer, if He were limited by the speed of light. The reason? If would necessitate multiple billions of years for each two-way communication – “between communiqués,” if you please, from one side of the universe to the other. Consequently, God would always be billions of years behind on His job. Which is, of course, ridiculous!
God and Christ must travel faster than the speed of light – essentially instantaneously, and therefore they cannot possible be composed of physical light. Light is limited by the restriction and boundaries of physical law. And God and Christ are not! They are not composed of physical material, but rather of spiritual material.
But now how do we explain the description of God in the Bible as being like light! To do so, we must first reiterate the nature and mechanism of light.
Light (photons) is physical material just as matter (for example flesh and blood) is physical material. And we see flesh and any other material object only because light (photons) is emitted from or absorbed by these objects. Thus Moses saw God only in a physical form, the release of photons. In other words, God made Himself visible to Moses by allowing physical light (photons) to come into the eyes of Moses and impinge on his retina, thereby triggering electrical impulses to his brain. Moses’ brain then was able to interpret these signals as the form and appearance of a Great Being.
Consequently, in order to impress upon Moses His strength, God manifested His form in physical light. God can thus make His appearance to man either as a human being or as a being which emits light. But remember, both are physical forms.
Christ said, “He that has seen me has seen the Father” because God’s structure and personality were revealed through Christ in His physical form. Consequently Moses did not see God (the One who became Christ) in His true spiritual form any more than did Christ’s disciples. It is impossible to see, as we normally define the operation of seeing, God or any spirit being unless they choose to manifest into photons or other forms of matter, or unless our eyes are changed in some supernatural fashion as in the case of Elisha and his servant (II Kings 6:17).
In His “real reality” not just in His manifested reality God is Spirit, and is therefore not composed of photons or other physical substances. Consequently, the presence of existence of God or of any other spirit beings cannot be ascertained by physical instruments or techniques. That is, science by its physical nature, by its inherent limitations, cannot detect the presence of, or changes in spirit.
But by examining God’s creation, we can conclusively infer that God does exist (Rom. 1:20).
And this Great Creator God is not composed of physical light. But He does radiate a fantastic spiritual light! And in God’s soon coming Kingdom we will be able to see God’s spiritual light, His “real reality” because we will be like Him.