Also known as: The Almighty, Jehovah, the Father, Lord.
Occupation: Sustainer and ruler of the universe.
Sex: Does not apply.
Place of birth: Does not apply.
Social Security: None.
Mother’s maiden name: None.
Education: Does not apply.
Honors received: Too numerous to list.
He doesn’t fit a mold, does he? He is, to put it mildly, unique. One of a kind.
Indescribable, some would say! God is beyond cataloging, and no computer resume, no investigating committee, not even a CIA computer could give an exhaustive profile of who He is and all that He’s done.
Yet we cannot give up! We can’t throw up our hands and dismiss Him as a mystery…we need Him!
It’s amazing in this world the way people respond to God, as they understand Him…it’s very different:
· some grovel before totems
· others bring offerings of chickens and goats
· others kneel five times daily to chant prayers
· others go into trances
· some believe in God so intensely they preach in foreign lands
· others deny His existence by their silence
What is God like? Answers don’t come easy, because of the immensity of the subject. God is huge, filling the universe. Also people might know the right words, but they seem to become hollow shells because they can’t comprehend them.
We say that God is holy, righteous, loving, gracious, Father-Son-Spirit, but we don’t know what all this means.
How do we know the words are empty? We can tell by the way many Christians behave!
· a Christian testifies that God is his creator and then does things that show that he dislikes himself
· a singer rhapsodizes about God’s grace and then worries about sins she committed years before
· a minister preaches about God’s sovreignty and then frets about how he will pay his bills
Our behavior exposes our failure to understand the words coming out of our mouths. We can talk about God, but we do not know Him! God is not like us — He’s one of a kind! God is different from men. Anyone trying to know God and learn to relate to Him must begin with this fundamental truth.
The word holy means ‘separate’ or ‘set apart.’ The Jews expressed that “God is holy” and immediately felt separate from Him, for instance.
· God is infinite: a term which means God is without limits.
· God is free: of time, ignorance, distance, and weaknesses, which confine humans
God is not optional! Unlike everything else, God is absolutely necessary, like water for fish. We can’t just “take God or leave Him” — He is inescapable, even more so than death and taxes. We must not be too
“familiar” with God, or regard Him as optional…we must learn to let God be God.
The Possibility of the knowledge of God
Children know and understand more today than ever before. At any typical gathering of a Christian family, at a Sunday dinner table, young children can discuss the ‘big-bang’ cosmic dust theory in regards to the theory of evolution.
Many young people, reared in Christian homes, have accepted the Biblical account of creation and the Christian religion in general without any serious examination of their claims. They have merely accepted these teachings without any real understanding of why they believed these and other tenets of Christian faith.
Some of these same people at a later time, perhaps while in military service, or attending college, or working in the city, have found their childhood faith seriously challenged. Many questions have been asked to which they have no answers.
Many a young person has come home sometime later to announce he/she has “lost their faith.” Those with no knowledge of their beliefs are easy prey to those who would destroy faith.
No person, no principle, no institution is exempt from a thorough examination. It is for this reason that young people deserve help in examining the claims of Christianity during the questioning period in
their lives. Parents likewise need guidance in order that they may be ready to answer the questions which their children are asking.
It was Jesus who said: (John 8:32) “Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.””
The apostle Paul wrote: (1 Thessalonians 5:21) “Test everything. Hold on to the good.”
Any religion which will not stand careful scrutiny will not long endure, nor should it endure! We confidently believe that the Christian faith will not only survive but will even florish under honest, open-minded inquiry.
The knowledge of God is desirable. Will Durant wrote: “The greatest question of our time is not communish vs. Individualism, nor Europe vs. America, nor even the East vs. West; it is whether men can bear to live without God.”
Unquestionably the knowledge of God is desirable (and even needed); the religious yearnings of mankind testify to that. It would be frightful to imagine a world without a God, a universe without a Creator, sinners without a Savior, and the human race without eternal hope. It is instinctive for man to believe in the existence of a supreme Being. Man is naturally religious, and requires an Object upon which to bestow his worship.
But is it possible?
The Scriptures attest to two facts: the incomprehensibility of God and the knowability of God. To say that He is incomprehensible is to assert that the mind cannot grasp the knowledge of Him. To say that He is knowable is to claim that He can be known. Both are true though neither in an absolute sense.
To say that God is incomprehensible is to assert that man cannot know everything about Him. To say that He is knowable is not to assert that man can know everything about Him.
Both truths are affirmed in the Scriptures: His incomprehensibility in verses like Job 11:7 and Isaiah 40:18:
(Job 11:7) “”Can you fathom the mysteries of God? Can you probe the limits of the Almighty?”
(Isaiah 40:18) “To whom, then, will you compare God? What image will you compare him to?”
His knowability in verses like John 14:7; 17:3; and 1 John 5:20:
(John 14:7) “If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.””
(John 17:3) “Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.”
Faith in God is a fundamental requirement of the religion of the Bible.
(Hebrews 11:6) “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.”
The moral and spiritual situation of man demands the existence of God. Vultaire said: “If there were no God, it would be necessary to invent him.”