believe in one God, Creator of all things, infinitely perfect and eternally
existing in three Persons, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
we need to prove the existence of God? Peter
Marshall a pastor from the 1930’s and 40’s had a favorite thought.
It was that “spiritual reality is a matter of perception, not of
proof.” He went on to say that in
the same way “There are some things that can never be proved.
Can you prove that something is lovely?
Could you prove that a sunset is beautiful?
Of course we cannot.
has revealed His existence in many ways, look for a moment at the following
poem, also a popular hymn. See also
is my Father’s world
to my listening ears,
nature sings and round me rings
music of the spheres.
is my Father’s world,
rest me in the thought
rocks and trees, of skies and seas,
hand, the wonders wrought.
is my Father’s world,
birds, their carols raise,
morning light, the lily white
their makers’ praise.
is my Father’s world,
shines in all that’s fair.
the rustling grass I hear Him pass,
speaks to me everywhere.
is my Father’s world,
let me ne’er forget
though the wrong seems oft so strong,
is the ruler yet.
is my Father’s world,
battle is not done.
who died, shall be satisfied
earth and heaven be one.
D. Babcock 1858–1901)
January 7, 1855 C. H. Spurgeon included the following thoughts in his sermon at
New Park Street Chapel. “There is something exceedingly improving of the mind
in a contemplation of the Divinity. It
is a subject so vast, that all our thoughts are lost in its immensity; so deep,
that our pride is drowned in its infinity. Other
subjects we can compass and grapple with; in them we feel a kind of
self-content, and go our way with the thought ‘Behold I am wise’.
But when we come to this master-science, finding that our plumb-line
cannot sound its depth, and that our eagle eye cannot see its height, we turn
away with the thought that vain man would be wise, but he is like a wild ass’s
colt; and with solemn exclamation ‘I am but of yesterday, and know nothing’.
No subject of contemplation will more humble the mind than thoughts of
God . . .”
understanding of God lies at the upper limits of our human abilities and extends
upwards from that point. God is
fundamentally different than us, which makes it difficult to describe and
understand Him in the language of our everyday experience.
He reminds us of many things—beauty, love, wonder, and others, but He
is more than these.
the same time we have inside us something of God, for we are told in Genesis
1:27 “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created
him”. This tells us that God is in
some way infinite and at the same time a person.
usual conception of reality is primarily physical, that is composed of matter.
This is what we are used to measuring, controlling, and understanding.
Biblical theism, on the other hand presents the Person of God as the
primary reality. All else, even man,
is an expression of divine achievement. The
first four words of the Bible tell us “In the beginning God”.
This gives God the primary position in the universe.
It also will call for us to unlearn some of the thoughts and attitudes we
basic truths about God which Christians have are listed below.
They will serve as a road-map on our lifelong journey to not just learn
more about God, but to know God.
God has spoken to man, and the Bible is His Word, given to us to make us wise
God is Lord and King over His world; He rules all things for His own glory,
displaying His perfections in all that He does, in order that men and angels may
worship and adore Him.
God is Savior, active in sovereign love through the Lord Jesus Christ to rescue
believers from guilt and the power of sin, to adopt them as His sons, and to
bless them accordingly.
God is Triune; there are within the Godhead three persons, the Father, the Son,
and the Holy Ghost (Spirit); and the work of salvation is one in which all three
act together, the Father purposing redemption, the Son securing it, and the
Spirit applying it.
Godliness means responding to God’s revelation in trust and obedience, faith
and worship, prayer and praise, submission and service.
Life must be seen and lived in the light of God’s Word.
This and nothing else is true religion.
best place to look when seeking knowledge about Him is in His Word the Bible.
The Bible was custom designed by God for us.
It is His revelation of Himself and of His plans regarding Himslef and
terms that we use to describe God are called His attributes, they include love,
holiness, sovereignty, etc. No list
of attributes will completely describe an infinite God but they will teach us
much about Him.
God is transcendent and omnipotent, this means that God is independent and above
His creation. God is not subject to
the limitations of the physical world He has made.
God has infinite power and can make something exist by the force of His
will. (Genesis 1) However God will
not contradict Himself, all of His attributes exist in concert.
When we are asked if God can make something so heavy that He cannot lift
it, we should remind them as C. S. Lewis said that nonsense is nonsense even if
we are talking about God.
may however choose to put limits upon himself for a time or a purpose.
Two examples are Genesis 18 where God appeared as a man, or Genesis
32:22–30. Of course God in the
person of Jesus took all of our physical limitations upon Himself by being born
as a baby and being obedient to death on the cross.
God is omnipresent or imminent. This
means that God’s power and presence pervade all of creation.
God has not separated Himself from the world but exists in all parts of
it. This does not mean that God is
nature, or is contained by nature. We
do not worship the “Mother Nature” of the margarine ad but a Holy and
heavenly Father who reigns over all of nature.
Matthew 6:9 The Father is shown to be in heaven.
Ephesians 4:6 shows God “. . . over all and through all and in all . .
.” All other being known to man
including angels, are restricted to a given place at a given time.
is Holy. The Holiness of God
encompasses all of His attributes and is active.
God is holy, therefore He is righteous in His ways.
This is made clear in the Scriptures, another word for God is the Holy
One of Israel. (2 Kings 19:22, Psalm
71:22, Isaiah 1:4) The angles around His throne proclaim His holiness, not His
wisdom, love, or strength. (Isaiah
6:2, Revelation 4:8) Though
infinitely holy, He nevertheless maintains a relationship with His fallen
creatures, a vital nearness. See
Exodus 3:5, Leviticus 19:2, Psalm 99:3,5,9, Isaiah 6:3, 1 John 1:5, Revelation
15:4 for more information on the holiness of God.
is Just. This is a legal term and
refers to Gods governing of His creation. Divine
justice is exhibited in the fact that righteous laws are given to men, that
these laws are sustained by proper sanctions, and that these laws are given an
impartial execution. No favoritism
is ever indulged, though infinite favor is extended to those who come under
righteous provisions for salvation through Christ’s sacrifice for sin.
Read 2 Chronicles 19:7, Acts 17:31, Revelation 15:3, and 1 John 1:9
is Love. Three terms are used in
scripture as comprehensive terms for God. They
are Spirit (John 4:24), light (1 John 1:5), and love (1 John 4:8).
God has not attained love, nor does He by effort maintain love; it is the
structure of His being. Without the
attribute of love God would not be what He is.
As no other attribute, love is the primary motive of God, and to satisfy
His love all creation has been formed. Read
the following verses for a clearer understanding of the Love of God.
John 3:16, Romans 5:8, and 1 John 3:16.
is Goodness. The infinite goodness
of God is a perfection of His being which tells us about His nature.
God’s goodness is the source in the universe of all that is truly good.
God’s goodness encompasses mercy, grace, and love.
God is benevolent to all of His creation, we can think of this as a sort
of generic goodness to everything. It
extends to the sustenance of all His creatures.
God is merciful, specifically towards those who put their trust in Him.
See 2 Corinthians 1:3, Hebrews 4:16, and Romans 9:15, 18.
is truth. God is called the God of
truth. The truth of God is what
gives us certainty in our lives and in our salvation.
God is declared to be a “covenant keeping” God (Numbers 23:19) and
reliable (Hebrews 10:23). Because
God is a God of truth He is also described as immutable.
This means that God does not change in Himself nor does He alter His
promises to us, or expectations from us.
God is infinite. He is without
beginning and end. This is true of
dimension, time, and the quality of the aforementioned attributes.
We cannot truly imagine infinity, we can’t even imagine an infinite
quantity of something as mundane as potatoes.
We can however recognize not only the existence but the desirability of
an infinite God. Thankfully God is
not limited by our understanding of Him anymore than an airplane is limited in
flight by our lack of understanding of aerodynamics.
when you thought you were finished with the tough stuff one more basic fact
remains to be explored about the nature of the Godhead.
This is His existence as a Trinity. The
doctrine is that “God is one in His essential being, but that the ‘divine
essence’ exists in three modes or forms, each constituting a Person, yet in
such a way that the divine essence is wholly in each Person.”
first clue about the Trinity is in Genesis 1:1–3.
Here we see that God and Spirit are active in creation.
Other indications of the Trinity in the old Testament are Genesis 1:26,
3:36, 48:15–16; Exodus 31:3; Numbers 11:25; and Isaiah 11:2, 42:1, 61:1.
concept of the Trinity is not of modern or post Christ advent as some would have
you believe. When Jesus was Baptized
by John the Baptist, the Spirit descended in the form of a dove and a voice was
heard from heaven (Mark 1:10–11). The
Bible’s emphasis throughout however, is on the fact that God is one.
(Deuteronomy 6:4) We must not allow
the scriptural truth of the Trinity to deprive us of the equally important
teaching that there is only one God.
spoke of the Father and the Spirit as being distinct persons from Himself. (Read
John chapters 14–16) But we must
be careful when discussing the Trinity with words like ‘person’ and
‘substance’ because they are only words to help us understand and do not
fully explain the reality.
words fail to express fully even my own incomplete understanding of the Trinity,
but I feel comfortable that it is described in the Bible and consistent with
Gods revelation in the Scripture to us. M.
Coquerel states, “God is the only intelligent being for whom no mystery
exists. To be surprised, to be
indignant at encountering mysteries, is to be surprised, is to be indignant at
not being God”
than try to explain God more fully in my own words I suggest that you read the
verses mentioned above and allow God to speak to you directly through His Word
and illuminate it to you trough the Spirit.
In closing I offer this poem by Christopher Wordsworth (1807–1885)
day of rest and gladness, O day of joy and light,
balm of care and sadness, most beautiful, most bright!
thee the high and lowly, before the eternal throne
‘Holy, holy, holy!’ to the great Three in One.
thee, at the creation, the light first had its birth;
thee, for our salvation, Christ rose from depths of earth;
thee our Lord victorious, the Spirit sent from heaven:
thus on thee most glorious, a triple light was given.
art a cooling fountain in life’s dry dreary sand;
thee, likes Pisgas’s mountain, we view our promised land.
day of sweet reflection, a day of holy love,
day of resurrection from earth, to things above.
on weary nations, the heavenly manna falls;
holy convocations the silver trumpet calls,
gospel light is glowing, with pure and radiant beams,
living water flowing with soul refreshing streams.
graces ever gaining from this our day of rest,
reach the rest remaining to spirits of the blest.
Holy Ghost be praises, to Father and the Son;
Church her voice uprises to thee, blest Three in One.
List some of the ways God reveals Himself to us.
(Clues: Psalm 19:1–4;
Romans 1:19–20; Isaiah 45:1–3; John
1:14, 18, Hebrews 1:1–2; 1 Corinthians 2:9–10;
2 Corinthians 3:2–3).
What was/is/will be the responsibility of each Person of the Trinity in:
Share a way in which your understanding of God has changed in the last year,
Do you want to know God better? What
do you think you can do about knowing God better.
What first made you aware of God?
L. S. Chafer, D.D., Litt.D. Systematic
Theology c 1947
published by Dallas Seminary Press
J. I. Packer in Knowing God c
1973 published by Intervarsity
Paul E. Little Know What You
Believe c 1970, 1985, 1987 by SP
Publications inc. Victor Books