Author of Life



Author of Life

Acts 3:15



Think with me for a moment about the conception of a baby.  At the moment of fertilization, a one celled human embryo comes into existence.  Smaller than the dot above the letter “i,” smaller than you can see with the naked eye.  This one cell has a complete set of 46 chromosomes that is uniquely different from that of its mother and father.  This one celled embryo begins dividing and growing very rapidly and establishing a biomolecular communication system with the mother, even before its implantation in the uterus (Ingrid Skop, M.D.).

This one cell contains all the information needed to create the more than two hundred cell types that our body needs.  The information for those two hundred cell types placed into that one cell will produce every organ, muscle, bone, tissue, etc., etc., in the form needed to make the functioning system of a human body.   All the information and organization of the tens of trillions of cells in our bodies was placed in this one original cell formed at conception.  The sheer scale of this developmental process is testimony to all we know about God (Dr. Laurieann Dent).  May I suggest to you, that all of the information placed in that one cell, was placed there by an Author, an Engineer, with specific design purpose?

Author of Physical Life (Acts 3:15)

As Peter was preaching to a crowd in Solomon’s porch in the Temple area, He refers Jesus Christ as the Author or Prince of life depending on your translation.  He is speaking to a crowd of mostly Jewish people after they saw a miraculous healing of a lame man.  He gives credit for the miraculous healing to Jesus.  Certainly, most people in the crowd knew who this Jesus was because of the very public crucifixion that took place a couple of months earlier.

Peter presents Jesus as the Servant of God who they delivered over to Pilate.  Pilate was going to release Jesus to them, but they denied Jesus and asked for a murderer to be released instead.  In verse 15, this is how Peter describes what they did to Jesus.

And you killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses.

I was intrigued by the terms “Author of life” (ἀρχηγὸν τῆς ζωῆς).  The word author is translated from ἀρχηγός archegos {ar-khay-gos'} which means leader, prince, pioneer, originator, or author.  The idea is the one who begins something or authors something.  When the word “author” is used, we usually picture someone writing a book.  But the word “author” does not just refer to a person putting words on a page in a book, an author is anyone who is the originator or creator of something, especially a plan or idea.

Jesus is the Author of life, Peter says.  Actually, we will see in a moment that Jesus is the Author of both physical and spiritual life.  Though some might debate this, I believe Peter is talking about Jesus being the Author of physical life here.  The Jewish people put to death the very One who authored life.  In other words, Jesus was the One who came up with this plan or idea of human beings and beyond that, He wrote all the information needed into that one cell to produce an organized system that will rapidly become tens of trillions of cells working together as a whole body.  Certainly, Jesus is the Author of life both as the Originator and the One who writes the information into the DNA, RNA, genetics, and other information needed for our bodies to develop.  The Apostle John affirms this in John 1.

John 1:1-4, 14

1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. 4 In him was life, and the life was the light of men.

Who is this “Word” that was in the beginning, with God, Maker of all things, and giving life to all things?  Well, verse 14 tells us.

14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Jesus the Son of God is the author of life.  All the information written in that one cell produces these complex bodies we live in.  Some people want us to believe that somehow these complex organized systems came into existence by simple chance and that some kind of chemical reaction in a primordial soup began life and evolved into the bodies we have today.  But when we understand this developmental process, we see that it is impossible no matter how long a period of time you want to concoct in your mind that this took place.  Jesus is the certainly the author of life.  He originated life.  Also, Jesus is the:

Engineer of Organizational Function (Psalm 139:13-16)

An engineer is a person who designs and builds something.  He makes sure that it functions in the way he wants.  In other words, an engineer puts together the details of his design so that all the gears and sprockets work together.  When it comes to our physical bodies, Jesus is the engineer of organizational function.  Psalm 139 is an often-quoted passage when we think of God’s involvement in the creation of human life.  But let me point out a couple of important phrases as we read it this morning.

Psalm 139:13-16

13 For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother's womb. 14 I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. 15 My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. 16 Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.

Once again, we see the concept of God’s authorship of the information placed in that single cell.  The form of our substance as though it is written in a book authored by God.  David says God knit him together, that God has intricately woven him together, and that there is a wonder in this creation of a person in the womb.  God is the engineer of organizational function.

For example, did you know that the first organ to develop in the embryo of a baby is the heart?  One might think the structure of our bodies would begin first, you know, the framework.  That’s how I build stuff!  But God, in His infinite wisdom, engineered the intricate weaving of our bodies with the development of our hearts.  This certainly makes sense as we know that the heart is needed to pump the life-giving blood to multiplying and developing cells in the embryo.

We may think that the heart just kind of grows into a single muscle mass with hollowed out chambers that just kind of automatically happens on its own.  Contrary to how I think a heart should develop, God begins to develop the heart in two regions of the embryo separated by a midline.  Cells on each side of the embryonic midline begin to assemble into tubes.  These tubes have the ability to migrate to the midline and fuse together with each other at the exact same position and place on the midline.  The two tubes of stacked cells are now united in a common heart tube that makes up the left ventricle, the largest and most powerful of the heart chambers.

Dr. Laurieann Dent says that “uniting two tubes from separate regions of the embryo is an astounding feat of genetically regulated cell communication and migration – all to form just one of the four chambers of the heart.”

In a similar fashion, the other three chambers of the heart form and they will all join together into one heart with four chambers in a process they call looping.  It gets a little technical after this so I will not try to describe how this happens.  Before the embryo is 3 weeks old this rudimentary heart will begin pulsating.  Now the embryo’s first blood cells are created.  You see, blood cells are created through a mechanical process of pressure and friction created by the embryo’s pulsating heart.

Heart development is just one of the many developing processes taking place to make organs, bones, muscles, and tissues that are taking place in the embryo.  From the moment of conception, with the information placed in that single cell, there is an engineering marvel taking place in the womb of a mother.  God has intricately woven us together with the information implanted in that first single cell.  As David said in Psalm 139:

I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.

Doctors and scientists who study the human body from conception and through the stages of growth and development must see the miracle of human life.  That life was designed by a Grand Author and Engineer that causes all this to happen from a single fertilized cell.  But many still try to explain all this in terms of evolution and billions of years.  Why do so many attempt to come up with another way?  I think it is simply because the purpose of this grand design is to bring glory to God and some refuse to do that.

Designed for God’s Glory (Isaiah 43:1, 2, 7)

We have knowledge today about DNA, Gene information, cell formation, etc. that is unprecedented in all of human existence.  Never before have we had this kind of knowledge, yet, people like David in the Old Testament recognized the marvel of God’s design and gave God the glory even without this technical information we have today.

In Isaiah 43, God reassures the nation of Israel that there will be a day of restoration for them.  They do not need to fear what may come against them, they are His redeemed people.  He created them for a designed purpose.

Isaiah 43:1, 2, 7

1 But now thus says the LORD, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel: "Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine. 2 When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. . .  7 everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made."

All of this miraculous design, authored and engineered by God, is so that all of us will stand in awe of God and give Him glory, praise, and honor.  When we see the form and function of this intricately woven together tens of trillions of cells, how can we not give Him glory as our Creator?  How magnificent is this and yet we treat it as though it is no big deal.  After all, people give birth every day, approximately 370,000 each day worldwide.  So, what is the big deal?

The big deal is the there are 370,000 miracles happening every single day, but in addition to the 370,000 miracles of birth, unfortunately, there are another estimated 126,000 conceptions that are aborted worldwide each day (  That means that approximate one quarter of the conceptions in our world today will not be born to bring God glory.  The life that God designed for His glory will be snuffed out by abortion.  That is the sobering reality of today and each day in our world.

Often, we hear people question whether it is okay to have an abortion if there is knowledge that their embryo has some kind of disability, disorder, or impairment.  Surely God didn’t create that for His glory too, did He?

We know that we live under the curse of sin.  Ever since Adam and Eve’s original sin in the Garden of Eden, we know that pain and suffering have been a part of the human existence (Genesis 3).  Sin has certainly corrupted the “very good” that God created.  In fact, there would be no meaning to the word disability, if there is no understanding of what is “very good.”  There can be no understanding of what pain and suffering is apart from sin and its corruption.

Knowing those things helps us to understand why there are disabilities, or why we deal with pain and suffering.  But that still leaves us with questions when it comes to how it is that we are designed for God’s glory, with or without a disability.  What does it mean to be disabled anyway?  Personally, I think we are all disabled from the perspective that we all fail to fulfill perfectly the original design to glorify God because of the sin in our lives.  We may not have physical difficulties like some, but we still deal with the disabling effects of sin.

Stacia McKeever has written an excellent article for the Answers Magazine titled “An Unlikely Masterpiece.”  She reveals how God has brought her and her husband to an understanding that even with disabilities, God has created their son for His glory.  At nine months, their son was diagnosed with William’s Syndrome, which is a spontaneous deletion of about 25 genes at conception and that means a lot of developmental issues for their son.

As they grappled with the idea that their son had disabilities, yet at the same time knowing that God says in His Word that their son was fearfully and wonderfully made.  They wondered, how could their son be a masterpiece of God’s creation?  How do disabilities fit into that belief?  In Stacia’s article, she said that it is clear to her that some things a mother does can reap consequences on the unborn child in her womb, like Fetal Alcohol Syndrome.  But what about her child with this interesting deletion of genetic information.

As Stacia mined the depths of God’s Word, He showed them some interesting passages.  One such passage is Isaiah 43:7 where God clearly says that He forms us for His glory.  The passage we just looked at.  Then she shared another very thought-provoking passage concerning Moses’ call to lead the Israelites out of Egypt.  You see, God gave Moses a couple of powerful signs to help the people believe his message, but Moses still doubted God’s call and made the excuse that he had a disability of speech and so certainly God cannot use Him to speak to Pharaoh.  Look at what God says to Moses.

Exodus 4:10-12

10 But Moses said to the LORD, "Oh, my Lord, I am not eloquent, either in the past or since you have spoken to your servant, but I am slow of speech and of tongue." 11 Then the LORD said to him, "Who has made man's mouth? Who makes him mute, or deaf, or seeing, or blind? Is it not I, the LORD? 12 Now therefore go, and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you shall speak."

Stacia says, “In this passage, God is taking credit for making some people blind and some deaf.  Reflect on that with me for a moment.”  What if the thing we call a disability is no disability at all?  What if our disability is a special ability for someone to be used by God in a special way?  The information placed in that first single cell that causes someone to be different from us is not necessarily a disability from God’s perspective, but a special ability.  Maybe those of us who think we are normal are the ones who are disabled when it comes to bringing glory to God!  If we begin to see what we call disabilities from that perspective, we might all want disabilities.

God is the Author of Life.  He is the Engineer of Organizational Function, and we are all designed for God’s glory.

Author of Salvation (Hebrews 2:10, 12:2)

In closing I want to go back to what Peter said to the crowd of mostly Jewish people that were drawn in curiosity because of the healing of a lame man in Acts 3:15.

And you killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses.

Why did the Author of human life allow Himself to be killed by human hands?  Because the Author of human life, was to be the Author of spiritual life through His resurrection.  God raised Jesus from the dead making it possible for every single one of us to experience spiritual life.

That word translated “author” ἀρχηγός archegos {ar-khay-gos'} is used in two passages in the book of Hebrews that I would like to look at in closing.  We have found that Jesus is the author or originator of human life which takes place at conception, but He is also the author or originator of life spiritually.

Hebrews 12:1-2

1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 looking to Jesus, the founder [Author, Originator] and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.

Hebrews 2:9-10

9 But we see him who for a little while was made lower than the angels, namely Jesus, crowned with glory and honor because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone. 10 For it was fitting that he, for whom and by whom all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory, should make the founder [Author, Originator] of their salvation perfect through suffering.

Every single person who is alive on this earth has Jesus as the Author of their physical life.  But not everyone has Jesus as the Author of their spiritual life.  Certainly, He has made this available to all, but not all will receive it.  Because of sin, every person is bound to an eternity of death, an eternity of separation from God and an eternity of suffering.  But the Author and perfecter of our faith, the Author of salvation has made a way for us to have eternal life with Him in the presence of our Creator.

Have you placed your faith in the Author of Life?