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Who Created G‑d?

Who Created G‑d?

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Question:

I’ve often heard the argument that there must be a G‑d, because creation is so well designed that there must be a designer. For example, the human brain is so complex, it must have a creator, so G‑d must exist. That makes sense, but by using the same logic, I can ask the question: Who created G‑d?

Answer:

Your question can be answered by following a few logical steps.

Before creation, there was nothing but G‑d. Nothing. When we say that G‑d is the Creator, we don’t just mean He created solid objects, like planets, trees and aardvarks. We mean He created everything. Any thing you can think of, every single existence on every plane and in every dimension, was once not, and G‑d made it be.

That means that even concepts were created by G‑d. G‑d not only created the concrete universe, made up of gases, solids and liquids; He also created all of the abstract realities, such as love, goodness, purpose and logic. These concepts did not exist before He created them.

One concept G‑d introduced is the very concept of creation. G‑d came up with the idea that you can have nothing, and make something out of it. The very notion that something has a beginning, a point at which it comes into existence—that notion itself was created by G‑d. The concept didn’t exist before. Just like there were no trees before G‑d created the first tree, so too there were no beginnings before G‑d created the first beginning.

So your question is based on a false premise. You can’t ask “Who created G‑d?” because the whole concept of creating was G‑d’s idea in the first place. There was no such thing as creation before G‑d came up with it. Just as it is obvious that the person who made the first cartoon was not himself a cartoon, so too G‑d, who invented the concept of creation, is not Himself a creation.

G‑d, the Creator, never changes. He is always the same; He always was and always will be. Humans, created beings that we are, do not remain the same. We once were not, were brought into being, and will one day be no longer. And that is why humans are so special. Because as creations, we—you and I—​have the power to change. That’s the gift of being human.

Aron Moss is rabbi of the Nefesh Community in Sydney, Australia, and is a frequent contributor to Chabad.org.
Sefira Ross is a freelance designer and illustrator whose original creations grace many Chabad.org pages. Residing in Seattle, Washington, her days are spent between multitasking illustrations and being a mom.
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Abraham Milky Way Galaxy September 14, 2017

I think there is something missing here. This question was asked by many philosophers thousands of years ago,in many variations (such as, can god create a rock that he can't throw, can god uncreate god)... and till this very day, there isn't an answer that a true seeker of spiritual truth will be fully satisfied with- but the seeker of ultimate truth must also be mindful that if god didn't leave room for doubt, a chance for the mind to say: "logic says it can't be the created doesn't have a creator) , then god wouldn't be giving every human the chance to rise above the limitations of Intellect and choose faith and soul over logic and the mind. The question purposely doesn't have a good answer , because it is giving us the chance to believe in spite of the doubt- that is the glorious divine intention; obviously god could have chosen to create a world where faith is knowledge, where believing is knowing, but then you wouldn't have free will. Reply

Yochanan Netherlands September 8, 2017

This morning after Shacharit (I always ad a few personal thoughts in Dutch before I take of Tefillin and Thalit) and than I sit down a while enjoying the inner rest I always feel afterwards. Today a funny thought entered my mind that I like to share although I know it is wishful thinking. I said before science say we only use like 15% of our brain, I thought mayby the moment the our whole 100% someday is activated is the moment all beings become one and that could be Massiach becoming one with the universe. Wishful thinking I know but it gave me a great feeling only hours away from Shabbes ! Shabbat Shalom to all. Reply

Vivian Warshaw Los Angeles CA September 1, 2017

Bina - everything in life cannot be proved. For example there is no proof that the sun will rise tomorrow. There is a pretty good statistical chance that it will but proof? Nope. The only thing we can be sure of in life is that sometime in the future we will die - hopefully, not now. Reply

Jules Scher Monroe Twp, NJ September 1, 2017

Tally, I like your response to the Rabbis "proof", especially in that it basically concurs with my comments made on August 24th. Reply

Guillermo Vazquez Plasencia N Palm Beach September 1, 2017

Wisdom is, saying nothing .We do not need to prove there is or there is not a G-D . Some jobs must be left only to G-D ...He or she should be scratched when describing G-D ......lets teach how to control ill advised inclinations. Have a wonderful Shabbat . Reply

Bina August 30, 2017

Are you serious? Way to dodge the question!
"We believe in what we're saying, we say it because we believe it!"
Enough declarative statements!
Show some evidence! Reply

Robert Utah August 28, 2017

WoW,I'm so glad that G_D was,G_D is,& G_D will Always Be! Glad to be along for the Trip! Reply

Taly Israel August 28, 2017

Dear Rabbi. It takes courage to attempt to answer this question
The opening sentences are surprising:
"Before creation, there was nothing but G‑d. Nothing." And after creation there is something other than G-d? This seems totally illogical if we accept the axiom that only G-d Is.

Axiom: The beginning (time and everything else) was created by G-d. So by laws of logic, one may not ask what happened before the beginning. Since 'before' the beginning contradicts the axiom that the beginning was created by G-d. Science recognizes today that time was a product of the big bang. So one cannot scientifically ask what happened 'before' the big bang. Doesn't mean you understand it. It means that it is not in your playing field. From G-d's perspective, nothing else exists. From man's perspective, G-d, as Torah defines him, doesn't exist. But we can "accept" His truth. And we see from trial and error (science) that accepting His truth, makes creation a better world. Reply

Yochanan Holland September 1, 2017
in response to Taly:

The perfect entity we call G"D withdrew space (according to Kabalah) in order to create a fanclub to adore it (why would a perfect being needs worshippers) then whatches from the side line the destruction of each other and themselves ! In our human perspective is an individual who witnesses tragidy an has the power to prefend or stop it but does nothing actually an acclomplice to the crime. There are many questions we do not (yet) understand. (According to science we still use less then 15% of our brain capacity so maybe creation is not fullfilled yet) But in the end I put on Tefillin every Shacharit, pray Mincha and Arvit every day trusting that in time (while the prayers to me work as mantras to increase my consciousness every day) the answeres will apear ! Without hope or trust only chaos exist. We Jews have one thing in common with all other people ( including the most even not yet discovered tribes) we all believe that our G"D is the only and true creator. It is in our genes ! Reply

Jules Scher Monroe Twp, NJ August 28, 2017

Nancy, I agree that the scenarios you cited can not be comprehended, at the time.
However some day, especially with life expectancy increasing, we will be able to comprehend the complexities of the universe, and how it all began.
It may be a million years from now, but it will be.
I believe that we'll even be able to teach your cat Algebra, in its life after death. But that's another discussion.
At this time, I think that either you accept the incomprehensible existence of G-d, or you think that everything just somehow coincidentally happened simultaneously.
Flipping a coin is probably the best scientific way to determine the answer, at this time. Reply

Anonymous India August 28, 2017

This is not a perfect answer. I think you felt problem to answer the question and to manage it try in a best way. Reply

Michael NS August 28, 2017

God creates him/herself. It is evident that G_d has at least as much power as it takes to make a universe, and before time there would be no place to store this power. It would have to be in play. Logic is a given as well as understanding and wisdom. Consider this power as a squaring process, but without time to square the increase would have to be all at once. There is only one spirit which can endure this much power all at once and that is love. In the natural if you were to make a graph of a square to infinitum, you would find it curves outward to fold back to the beginning. The magnetic field is picture of the folding but not of the power. Thus G-d is the beginning and end, all in one, before time was made. This is why so much emphasis is placed on righteousness. G-d is subject to his own power and if he were to become unrighteous, it would be the end of all. This is the most important attribute G-d has given us in his image, our subjectivity to sin, Reply

Anonymous berlin August 28, 2017

That´s quite a high level,I like that. You can show that time and causality are the same and just are ways of thinking.So they don´t exist (Kant). So our job is to create the (or a better) universe.That´s why God created us. Reply

Nancy Texas August 27, 2017

Oy ! Trying to explain Hashem to us would be like trying to explain how computers, phones, airplanes, etc work to someone 300 years ago! Even I don't understand how they work... how can I understand something as complicated as Hashem? Face it, it is at this time beyond our comprehension. We're just not advanced enough to understand. (That doesn't mean there isn't an answer, just that we can no more understand it than my cat can understand algebra.) Reply

Anonymous August 30, 2017
in response to Nancy:

Humans invented computers, phones and airplanes. You can learn this by studying, going to school.
If complexity requires intelligent design, god should also!
Far more likely that we are the cause of natural events, rather than a supernatural one. Reply

david auw taipei, taiwan August 26, 2017

Did God created evil and all wickedness? Why only good things
were created by God? Reply

Nathaniel Sam George August 28, 2017
in response to david auw:

It was not He who created it, but anything against His will is termed 'evil' and 'wickedness' . As man was created in His image, we have free will. All evil will be condemned. Reply

Kenneth olen Smith Denison, Texas August 25, 2017

Rabbi Moss, i would in no way question fearing G_d I would be the very last man on earth to do that. I do not have an education as you and write with very poor skills. I know that G_d alone controls the universe and we do have the ability to be righteous, but we all do make mistakes, this is why we have a loving G_d that hears our sincere prayers and forgives our misdeeds. Da'at Tevunot 1-3 Reply

Guy Hoffman South Africa August 25, 2017

We have given G-d human qualities such as love, anger, forgiveness etc. In that sense haven't we "created" G-d so as to make understandable, in human terms, what is in reality beyond our comprehension? Reply

B Benjamins Holland August 26, 2017
in response to Guy Hoffman:

Of coarse you Guy will have questions about existence and religious matters. but you understand that you're not the first one.. Thank Gd that in his wisdom he created people who understood mankind and were inspired enough to devise answers that to us humans, with our imperfect understanding, can give an incline, and as such I would advise you to buy the book, written by one of our Wisest, Maimonides or the RAMBAM, named:" The guide for the perplexed "that will answer many of your queries. As far as the beginning of Creations goes, it would be a great help if you could express yourself in and understand some of an abstract/rational language called mathematics, for then you could picture the universe with all its space- time- and matter dimensions as a multi dimensional globe, which doesn't have a beginning nor an end but which is eternal Reply

Gunther R Bauer Rancho Palos Verdes CA August 25, 2017

"That’s the gift of being human.:"
Really?
I was interned in the Ghetto in Budapest during the holocaust, Most of my mother's family perished.
Hashem, stop monkeying into our life, you are getting to be tired and senile. See you up there, One of your "chosen for your sadistic games." Reply

Sientje Commerford August 25, 2017
in response to Gunther R Bauer:

But that isn't the Lord G-d of Israel that is monkeying in your life, that is mankind being filled with hatred in their hearts to their fellowmen, that caused the Holocaust. Besides I think that mankind those who do not fear or cherish the Laws of G-d would like to do away with Israel and its people, hence no G-d and His covenant with Abraham and his descendants. shalom and G-d bless Reply

Nathaniel Sam George August 27, 2017
in response to Gunther R Bauer:

Don't talk so! It is not "games". he does things so that He will be feared (in the sense of respect) and glorified. He has given you this life. Reply

gunther bauer Rancho Palos Verdes CA August 28, 2017
in response to Sientje Commerford:

The heavenly power. That is what most of the learned Talmud scholars including my Rabbi at the Chabad tells me. At the same time an other learned Rabbi, I can't remember his name, has written. "Hashem is in charge of everything, even a falling leaf from the tree." Therefore it is logical to say, that he is in charge of fallen heroes, in the many slaughters of Jews way before the Holocaust, i.e. his??? chosen people. Chosen for tzores. BTW, Why did Hashem made a tooth ache sooo painful, but mostly a well advance breast cancer painless and found if at all by accident. ??? And sooo many other creation anatomic and physiologic blunders?? Reply

Gunther R Bauer Rancho Palos Verdes CA via chabad.org August 28, 2017
in response to Nathaniel Sam George:

To be or not to be, that is the question? For millions of starving, La miserable, not to be would have been a better solution. Life is to be lived not to be suffered. A baby born with a birth defect, like, Down Syndrome, etc, is no fun. And that baby did not have a chance from conception, WHY? Why Pains, Cancer to the bone, with excruciating pain. Why was that practicing Jew with, American and Israeli citizenship, Journalist Daniel Pearl beheaded by those rots in Pakistan? I have many questions, and lets be honest for a change, none of you know any answers. Reply

Anonymous August 25, 2017

G-d is the "uncaused cause" Reply

Dan August 24, 2017

Under this logic, G-D does not exist, because the mere concept of existence was created by G-D.
To say that G-D created "concepts" seems an overbroad and vague interpretation.
Instead, GD seemed to affirm that language precedes thought and that the Hebrew letters themselves - which conceal g-dliness - are concept-neutral yet via interpretation become generative of ideas. We think in terms of language which means we conceptualize in terms of language. That GD created the Hebrew text which generated or necessitated concepts is more intuitively and doctrinally plausible than the ill-fit claim that GD is pre-conceptual. The latter point forces a contradiction because we often talk about the "concept of GD" which we know through other concepts (ominpresence, etc). But if GD is not a concept then there can be no language from which to identify his attributes. Reply

Ian Rowlands Naples August 27, 2017
in response to Dan:

Why should there be language to discuss the attributes of G-D? Are we seeking to force G-D into man's box? Perhaps G-D has revealed of Himself all He wishes us to know? Reply

Joseph Vinegar August 24, 2017

I myself came up with a treatise on this a while ago. It goes like this:

G-d made the universe (how is beyond me),
which means G-d invented the concept of time,
which means He is beyond time as He had made it,
and just like a man who understands how something will go because he made it,
G-d understands how things will go,
but since He invented the concept of "how things will go",
He understands all realities,
which means His knowledge is infinite,
but since this knowledge is part of Him,
and He is the only consciousness out of our universe,
and He is therefore indivisible,
He is infinite,
so He and His knowledge are the same,
and since the concept of time is His making,
He has no end or beginning. Reply

Nathaniel Sam George August 27, 2017
in response to Joseph Vinegar:

Very true!! Reply

S United Kingdom August 27, 2017
in response to Joseph Vinegar:

Thank you, this verse is lovely. Reply

Anonymous Wisconsin August 28, 2017
in response to Joseph Vinegar:

B"H....Only my humble odd opinion here, but is it not possible that HaShem is both present IN, and OUT-side of the boundaries of this infinite dimensional reality, similar to the way we determine if a master painting is a true original, or a fake, is.that the master artist left certain brushstrokes that are like fingerprints, in certain key areas of his artworks. Is that artist not present in his work? And, Torah does state that They made us in their image. How so? Each of us is different from each other in many ways. If The Creator made US Plural in their plural image. Where do we get. G-d is One? Does it have anything to do with the Latin phrase, "E pluribus unum"? Maybe His curiousity got the better of Him, and in this case, My actions reflect His image? Oy vey is right. Shalom and blessings to all the Seekers. Reply

Bobby Stern Linwood,NJ August 28, 2017
in response to Joseph Vinegar:

God is infinite!!! He did not create time. Man cannot comprehend infinity. Man divided infinity into segments he can understand, that is time!!! Reply

Nicolle Israel August 31, 2017
in response to Joseph Vinegar:

this is a very nice answer Reply

Joseph Vinegar September 1, 2017
in response to Bobby Stern:

In a world where nothing exists but singularity, the second law of thermodynamics cannot exist. This law dictates the change of things over time. Reply

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