A man is walking with his son somewhere in the south of England. Suddenly he hears “Daddy, catch me!” He turns around and sees his son sailing through the air. He had jumped off a big rock, and as he was jumping he said...
Who is God?
Believing in God is the basis of Christianity. But who is God exactly? Can we know Him at all? And what has He to do with us humans?
We can’t know God fully
Calling someone “God” means by definition that this Person or Being is divine. This simple observation already indicates that we humans might not be able to fully comprehend God, since He is beyond our reality. He is not confined to time and space, he is not confined to a material body. "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts" (Isaiah 55:8-9). Our five senses fall short to observe Him as He is – both because we were created as naturally limited humans, and because sin has blurred our view of God. We can know God only in so far as He reveals himself to us.
Knowing God is or life importance
God is a personal Being, and He wants a relationship with humans. Therefore He has revealed himself. The knowledge we can thus have about God is limited, but true and reliable. He tells who He is, and what his will is. This knowledge is a source of deep joy, and the basis for eternal life: "And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent" (John 17:3). “Knowing God” contains more than having some factual knowledge about him, it means having a personal relationship – like you “know” a good friend or your spouse.
God has revealed himself
God reveals himself by his works. By his creation, for example, He shows his power, wisdom, and wonderful creativity. In his reaction to sin, God shows his holiness and righteousness – but also his love in offering people a way to salvation. The Bible offers us extensive reports about what God has done and will do in the future.
Another way in which God reveals himself, is in his Names and in imagery He applies to himself, such as “Father”, “King”, “Rock”, and “Light”. All these names and images offer us a glimpse of God.
Ultimately, God has revealed himself in Jesus. He is the Son of God who became human and showed humanity Who God is (2 Corinthians 4:6). "No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father's side, he has made him known." (John 1:18)
Attributes of God
There are a lot of attributes that belong to God alone. For example, God is eternal – He has always existed and will exist forever. He is unchangeable, sovereign, self-sufficient, omnipresent and almighty. He does not have a physical body, but is a Spirit. And God is triune, which means that there is one God existing in the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. These are all attributes that humans don’t have and show what it means that God is divine.
There are also many attributes of God that can be present in humans at well – to some extent. Think for example of God’s love, his wrath, his wisdom or his holiness. These attributes teach us something about God’s character, about his personality. God is the ultimate standard of goodness; in him all these attributes are perfectly present.
God is one
We could make lists of all of God’s attributes, but in doing so it is important to keep in mind God’s oneness. This means not only that our God is the only God (see for example Deuteronomy 6:4), but also that all of his attributes form a unity. We can’t, for example, only stress God’s love and forget about his holiness, or just talk about his wrath and keep silent about his mercy. That would create a false image of God. He is not partly this and partly that, but that whatever he is, he is so entirely. The best way to get a balanced view of God, is to read the entire Bible regularly and let it shape your world view.
God is our Creator and Judge
God has created the world and all that’s in it – including the first humans (see Genesis 1 and 2). He even created these humans “in his image”, which means that humans have more God-like attributes than any other creatures, like plants or animals. Humans are meant to display or reflect Who God is.
Since God is our Creator, He has the right to reign us. We ought to serve and worship him. But already the first humans, Adam and Eve, rebelled against their Creator. The relationship between God and man was severely damaged. Humans could no longer fulfill their life purpose of reflecting and glorifying God and earned eternal death by their sin.
God is the Savior
And yet, God did not abandon his creation. God the Son came on earth as a human, and bore the judgment for humanity’s sin [insert link to page about Jesus Christ or salvation – under construction] He did this "that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life" (John 3:16). Whoever believes in Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior, is set right with God again. This creates the possibility of a renewed, loving, and personal relationship between God and man, in which God can even be called "our Father in heaven" (see Matthew 6:9).
God is thus the Creator of humanity, it’s Judge, but also the Redeemer and Savior of all who believe in him.