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What is God like?

What is God like?

God’s name is YHWH, which means “I am Who I am” or “I will be Who I will be” (Exodus 3:14). In other words, God is self-defining and independent of everyone and everything else. God is invisible (Colossians 1:15) and beyond our understanding (Romans 11:33). This means that the only way we can know what God is like, is if God takes the initiative to tell us and to show us (John 1:18). This is why God gave us creation (Psalm 19), the prophets, the Bible, and, supremely, Jesus Christ (Hebrews 1:1-3).

God is love (1 John 4:8, 16); God is eternal (1 Timothy 1:17); and God is independent of His creation (Acts 17:24-25). We might ask: “If God is eternally loving, who did He love before He created the world?” The answer is: the One God (Deuteronomy 6:4) is three eternal Persons (Matthew 28:19): Father (Ephesians 3:11), Son (1 John 1:2) and Holy Spirit (Hebrews 9:14), and each by nature loves the others from all eternity (John 3:35). God, then, is unity in diversity: in everything that God does, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit work together in perfect loving harmony (John 5:19-20).

God is a loving Creator

God’s activities are an overflow of God’s love. For example, the Father (Genesis 1:1), the Son (Colossians 1:16), and the Holy Spirit (Psalm 104:30) together created the universe (Psalm 33:6). This means that God is the uncreated Creator of all that exists (Genesis 1:1; Hebrews 11:3) and, because God made everything (Psalm 33:6), He owns everything (Psalm 95:5), and deserves all our worship (Psalm 33:8-9) and all our love (Matthew 22:37). Because God is Father, Son and Holy Spirit, to love the Son is to love the Father (1 John 2:23), and vice-versa (John 8:42). You can’t have One without the other!

God’s love continuously overflows to His creation in His generous gifts to us of food and happiness and sunshine and rain (Acts 14:17). God loves to give good gifts to the world (James 1:17), even to His enemies (Matthew 5:44-48)!

God is a merciful Savior

God’s love for His enemies is most clearly seen in the Gospel. God is holy (Leviticus 19:2) and just (Deuteronomy 32:4), and He has warned us that our sin makes us guilty and deserving of death and hell (Genesis 2:17; Romans 1:32). This leaves us all in danger, because we have all sinned against God (Romans 3:10-12), not even thanking Him for His kindness to us and to others (Romans 1:21), but turning His kind gifts against Him and other people (Ephesians 2:3).

Yet because of God’s great mercy and love (Ephesians 2:4), 2000 years ago, God gave us His one and only, dearly beloved Son (John 3:16), to come into the world as a man, Jesus Christ (John 1:14). Jesus gave His life on our behalf (John 10:11) so that through faith in Jesus alone (Acts 4:12), we can be saved from the punishment we deserve (1 Peter 3:18). God also sent His Holy Spirit, so that we can be adopted back into God’s family as forgiven sons and daughters (Romans 8:15-17), and be made holy and loving, like God (Galatians 5:22-25).

God is a righteous Judge

Forty days after Jesus rose from the dead, He ascended into heaven (Acts 1:9-11), where He is now seated at the right hand of God the Father (Acts 2:33). By His Spirit, God is now present within each of His children (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). However, on Judgment Day, Jesus will return physically to earth (Acts 17:31), to punish all who have refused to believe in His Gospel (2 Thessalonians 1:8-10). He will throw all unforgiven people into the eternal lake of fire (Revelation 20:15). Then, God Himself will come down into the world and live with His forgiven children in a renewed creation, which is free of all sin, forever and ever (Revelation 21:3-4).

How does this Bible passage speak to you? Please share your thoughts below!

Also read What is the character of God?

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Biblword is a ministry of GlobalRize. Marten Visser is the founding director of GlobalRize. Marten is a pastor from The Netherlands with long years of experience as a missionary in Thailand. We now have around 200 people from all over the world involved in GlobalRize’s ministry. Besides the English page, Biblword also exists in 13 other languages on Facebook.

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What is God like?
E-book for the coronavirus crisis
This e-book has lessons for you from the early church relevant to us today.
Download free e-book