How many days did God wait before He created the world?

This little question was asked by a girl at church yesterday. Her simple question raises deeper questions for which good answers are hard to find. What was God doing before the universe began? How long did God exist before He created the universe?

The Bible teaches that God is eternal. “From everlasting to everlasting, thou art God.” (Psalm 90:2) God existed eternally before He created the universe. He did not spring into existence a day before creating everything. He has always been. He has no beginning. He existed in eternity before the universe began. This is simple to state, but hard to understand. Any serious attempt to understand the eternity before space, time, matter or energy were created is more than the mind can handle.

How long did God wait before creating? He waited all eternity and He waited no time at all. He did not wait any days, because days did not exist until He created Day on the First Day. “And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.” (Genesis 1:5) He did not wait any time because time did not exist until God created it. Though He waited no time before creating, His eternal existence means He existed eternally before anything else existed.

This deceptively challenging question wrestles with the true nature of creation and eternity. Everything exists because God created it. Time exists only because God created it. God’s eternal existence cannot be understood by the finite mind of man. Eternity cannot be measured by the age of the universe. God always has been and always will be. He alone has no predecessor, no creator and no beginning. The Eternal Creator created Day, Night, Seasons and Years. He did so when He chose, and at His choosing time came into being.