Even the word “God” has a degree of vagueness about it. God is too broad a concept to have any actual definition, given that various cultures have different gods and diverse views about gods.
Aphrodite, Apollo, Athena, Hades, Hera, and Zeus were just a few of the gods and goddesses from the Greek pantheon. They were individuals with their unique tales, abilities, and failings. As did the Roman pantheon.
Modern Hindus honor a pantheon of deities, including Lakshmi, Vishnu, Shiva, and Brahma. Many debates whether the multiplicity of gods venerated by the religion refers to several unique gods or expressions of a unitary Supreme Being.
Allah is the name of the God that Muslims honor. Christian creeds exalt the “Trinity” of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
Defining Who God Is As Christians
What “God” means to the Greeks, Romans, Hindus, Muslims, and Christians is different than what it means to everyone else. There are probably some parallels, but the variations are far larger. The word “God” resembles a box. Until something is put into it, it is only a container.
In the Christian Bible, many different descriptions of God are offered. Christians have always considered the Bible as their go-to resource for learning about God. Let’s consider some of the most important things the Bible says about God.
God is a Creator
It doesn’t take very long in the Bible before we discover something significant about God. We learn that “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth” in the very first sentence of the very first chapter of the very first book. This short statement reveals that God is the creator of everything.
God, in his role as Creator, preexists all other things. He has always been there. He created everything from nothing. Therefore, he is both before and the origin of all existence. He is aware of everything and may be found at any time and place.
Given his role as the Eternal One, he needs nothing and provides for himself. God, in contrast to us, does not need anything else. The universe wasn’t made to satisfy some emptiness inside
him, and he doesn’t require anybody or anything else to live.
God is personal because He created us. This concept is challenging to grasp, yet it is an aspect that distinguishes Christianity from other religions. According to certain faiths, gods are more akin to an impersonal force or thing.
God is the creator of all things. He does not require anything from us. He is the giver of life. God decreed that humans would populate the planet and established the periods and seasons for civilizations to rise and fall. So it’s absurd to think he can be confined in whatever image we create.
God Talks To Us
The Bible begins with God. It is claimed that he exists. One reason is that no one ever stated he didn’t exist when the Bible was penned. Why should you respond to a claim that no one is making? Nevertheless, Scripture teaches us that the God who exists communicates and manifests himself in and through creation. “He is there and he is not silent,” stated philosopher and theologian Francis Schaeffer.
There’s no longer any need for this. Many Deists think God may very well have created everything and stood back to observe what would happen next. However, the Bible depicts God as an active participant in the stage of history by communicating, educating, tending to, and saving.
God shows himself because he desires to be known, yet knowing God fully is unattainable for us. “How great is God—beyond our understanding!” declares the Bible.
This should not be shocking. We don’t know anybody or anything entirely. All of our information is restricted since we are finite beings. Indeed, we can’t have a perfect understanding of God, but that doesn’t mean we can’t know anything about him.
“The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.” (Psalm 19:1)
To put it another way, the universe is conversational. It gives us insight into the character of God. In the same way that an artist’s picture or a poet’s sonnet may shed light on their inner selves, God’s creation also sheds light on his character.
Think about it: God has more power than anything we can perceive. God surpasses whatever we could find beautiful or nice. Any time we encounter originality, we may attribute it to God.
God is the Savior of Mankind
In the Bible, God reveals himself as both the Creator and the Savior. God’s magnificence was shown to us in our examination of his role as creator; now we’ll look at God’s role as rescuer to better understand his magnificent grace, which is based on God’s delight in bestowing his favor on the undeserving.
Let’s start at the beginning of the Gospel of John, with chapter 1. His first line, “In the beginning was the Word,” may seem familiar. Does the Bible’s Book of Genesis opening words come to mind? “In the beginning, God created.” If so, you’ve noticed John’s not-so-subtle parallel between his tale and the genesis narrative.
But exactly what is this “Word”? We quickly learn that “the Word” refers to a person — specifically, a “him.”
In this case, “Word” refers to Jesus Christ. In other words, Jesus Christ is the pinnacle of God’s self-revelation, which began with creation. God the Father became one with his creation in Christ.
Although Adam and Eve were expelled from Eden, God sent Jesus “to seek and to save the lost.” As for those who profess faith in Jesus of Nazareth, the Holy Spirit brings them into a living relationship with the God who became a man and walked the earth.
Examining the various ways God’s grace is shown in the Bible is essential for understanding the full scope of what it meant for the triune God to be a rescuing God. There is a common misconception that the God of the Old Testament is a God of vengeance and the New Testament is a God of grace, but as we shall show, this is not the case. Careful study of the New Testament will reveal the entire extent of God’s wrath toward sin.
The ultimate seriousness with which God punishes sin is made clear by Jesus’s sacrifice on our behalf. Jesus took on human form so that we could share in his divinity. The two sides of God’s character, revealed in Christ’s exchange with the sinner, are revealed here: his wrath toward sin and his grace for sinners. But the Old Testament is also full of God’s promises of faithful love and grace. A single narrative thread connects the Old and New Testaments.
Abram, a nomadic man, was the first human God used to initiate his plan to save the world. God extended a generous offer of favor to Abram, promising to make his name known, give him territory, populate the planet with his offspring, and bless the whole planet through him. As a result, God established an eternal covenant with Abram and his descendants. No, it wasn’t deserved. Complete grace.
Even though people have rejected God throughout history and still do today, he is still a God of grace and salvation.
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