Therefore, I will assume that there is a personal Creator as we try to understand beauty and our hunger for it this morning. If there is a personal God who has created all things and has given everything its form and its purpose, then beauty must be defined in relation to God. Try to picture the impossible: what it was like before the creation of anything. Once there was only God and nothing else. He never had a beginning, and therefore what he is was not shaped or determined by anything outside himself. He simply has always been what he is (Exodus 3:14; Hebrews 13:8).
Therefore, if the beauty we behold on earth has its root and origin in God, there must have been beauty in God from all eternity. What, then, is the beauty of God? In one sense this is a hard question, and in another sense it is very easy. It is hard because there is no pattern of beauty of which we can say, “God is like that, and so God is beautiful.” If there were a pattern by which we could measure God, it would be God. No, God himself is the absolutely original pattern of all other beauty. Therefore, the answer is simple: Beauty is what God is. His wisdom is beautiful wisdom, his power is beautiful power, his justice is beautiful justice, and his love is beautiful love.
But what makes each of these attributes beautiful is not merely that they are infinite, unchanging, and eternal. Power, for example, could be infinitely and eternally evil and thus ugly. The attributes of God derive their infinite beauty from their relationship to each other. Just as in paintings it is not the isolated color or shape or texture that is beautiful but rather their relationship with each other, their proportion and interplay; so it is with persons and ultimately with the person of God. It is the peculiar proportionality and interplay and harmony of all God’s attributes (together with their infiniteness and eternality) that constitutes God’s beauty, and makes him the foundation of all the beauty in the world.