Who is God ?

The Bible testimony opens with the words:

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.   (Genesis 1:1)

This presents the eternal existence of God as a fact.
God, enormously creative and artistic, created the world and the universe.
God, a Personality in the invisible world.

In the Western world we have little feeling with the invisible world, which is also called the spiritual world. Science has argued its existence away over the past 2,000 years.

People from Africa, the Far East or South America who, among other things, have been in contact with voodoo and witch doctors, have no problem with accepting the existence of a spiritual, invisible world. They have been confronted with it.

Man lives on the border between these two worlds – the visible, physical world and the invisible, spiritual world.

At a certain moment in time, when God chooses Moses to act as the leader of the people of Israel, Moses asks:

Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ Then what shall I tell them?”   (Exodus 3:13)

God then answers Moses:

I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I AM has sent me to you.’   (Exodus 3:14)

In the Bible (in the NBG translation) God is usually referred to by the following names:

  • Elohiym -  translated as ‘God’.
  • Adonay – translated as ‘Lord’.
  • Yehovah- translated as ‘LORD’.  (in other translations as ‘Jahwe’)

What is important, is that when God is asked what His name is, He replies: “I Am”.
God IS.

What the Bible teaches us about Who God is:

God is light.

This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.   (1 John 1:5)

God is holy.

Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.   (Isaiah 6:3)

God is majestic in holiness.

Who among the gods is like you, LORD? Who is like you — majestic in holiness, awesome in glory, working wonders?    (Exodus 15:11)

God is love.

God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.   (1 John 4:16)

God is peace.

So Gideon built an altar to the LORD there and called it The LORD Is Peace.   (Judges 6:24)

God is faithful.

God is faithful, who has called you into fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.   (1 Corinthians 1:9)

God is righteous (kind, faithful).

The LORD is righteous (kind, faithful) in all his ways and faithful in all he does.   (Psalm 145:17)

God is a consuming fire and jealous.

Be careful not to forget the covenant of the LORD your God that he made with you; do not make for yourselves an idol in the form of anything the LORD your God has forbidden. For the LORD your God is a consuming fire, a jealous God.   (Deuteronomy 4:23-24)

God is the creator of heaven and earth.

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.   (Genesis 1:1)

What God says about Himself.

God had rescued Israel from the slavery of Egypt, under the leadership of Moses.
At a certain moment in time Moses asks:

Now show me your glory.   (Exodus 33:18)

To which God replies:

I will cause all my goodness to pass in front of you, and I will proclaim my name, the LORD, in your presence. I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. But, he said, you cannot see my face, for no one may see me and live. … you will see my back; but my face must not be seen.   (Exodus 33:19-20,23)

Then the LORD came down in the cloud and stood there with him and proclaimed his name, the LORD. And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, “The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin.

Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children and their children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation.   (Exodus 34:5-7)

(God forgives unrighteousness (= forgives unrighteous acts), but their negative consequences can continue working until the great-grandchildren.)

How God reveals Himself in this world.

God is known as the Creator, but He also wants to be known as Father, the perfect Father.

… I thought you would call me ‘Father’ and not turn away from following me …   (Jeremiah 3:19)

Or, as the apostle Paul writes:

… yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom all things came …   (1 Corinthians 8:6)

God reveals Himself through Jesus Christ, His Son, as well.
He Himself says of Jesus:

This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased. Listen to him!   (Matthew 17:5)

And Jesus says of Himself:

I and the Father are one.   (John 10:30)

And:

Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father.   (John 14:9)

God reveals Himself through the Holy Spirit too.
The Holy Spirit is the connecting link between heaven and earth.
He has been known right from the beginning:

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.   (Genesis 1:1-2)

Jesus says of the Holy Spirit:

When the Advocate comes, whom I will send to you from the Father — the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father — he will testify about me.   (Johannes 15:26)

So God reveals Himself as:

  • Father
  • Son  (Jesus Christ)
  • Spirit  (The Holy Spirit)

God is a tri-une God!

Creation will be explained in more detail in the following section of this study.
Attention is paid to the discussion about creation and evolution in a separate document.

 

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Who is God.