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Who is God?
Thank you for this great question, I'm not sure I can think of a bigger one or many more important!
Our society has countless answers to this question. We've been conditioned to think that whatever we want to be true about things like God is true, but we never think of approaching matters of science, history or geography that way, so why this question when it's so much more important?
In contrast to us trying to put together what we know and figure out who God is, one name often given to the Bible is "revelation." We may well be able to work some things out about God, reach out to him or derive things about him from what we know, but how can we ever really know we are right? How much better would it be if God revealed himself to us? The Bible explains our innate need to know God: knowing God is the reason we were made. Adam and Eve walked with God in the garden of Eden and spoke to him face to face (Genesis 3:8), but Adam and Eve disobeying God put a separation between mankind and himself (Genesis 3:23).
With that separation, God gave his word through prophets so we could hear who he is and what he's like, and in the law so that sin could be identified. We see who he is most perfectly in Jesus, who is the ultimate prophet and the fulfilment of the law. Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son (Hebrews 1:1-2). Jesus said of himself, "I and the Father are one" (John 10:30), and, "whoever has seen me has seen the Father" (John 14:9).
Paul calls Jesus the image of the invisible God (Colossians 1:15) meaning that Jesus is the way we see God. In fact, that thought leads on to the realisation that every single time that God is seen in the Bible, it is actually Jesus!
John writes that one title for Jesus is the Word (John 1:18) and so every time that we read of an Old Testament prophet that the word of the Lord came to them (for example in Genesis 15:1-6 where the word of the Lord is an active character in the scene, moving around and talking) it's not them receiving a message, it's them receiving a messenger: Jesus, who speaks to them.
Another Old Testament prophetic figure is called the angel of the Lord, but if you follow the narrative in passages like Judges 6:11-14 you see the angel of the Lord speaking to Gideon, and moments later it is simply the Lord who is speaking. In Genesis 22:15-16 the angel of the Lord speaks from Heaven and says, By myself I have sworn, declares the Lord.
Similarly, in Exodus 3:2-4 we see the angel of the Lord in the burning bush, the Lord seeing how Moses reacts, and God calling out - all the same person described in three different ways, or by three different titles. Therefore we see that the angel of the Lord is another of Jesus' titles, with Him being manifest in a pre-incarnate way. We need to be clear though that Jesus is not an angel, but fully God.
Another example is Isaiah's incredible vision of God in all his glory in Isaiah 6:1-5, which John 12:41 tells us was a vision of Jesus.
So in summary, from the Bible, we could say lots of things about God: he is love (1 John 4:8); he is holy (Isaiah 6:3); he is fair (Deuteronomy 32:4); he is righteous (2 Chronicles 12:6); he is good (Psalm 34:8) - the list could go on! But the best answer is that Jesus is God, for in Jesus we see God perfectly displayed in a way we can understand, and through Jesus we can know God, personally and intimately. The bible tells us that Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God (1 Peter 3:18). Jesus Christ shows us God, and through the cross has dealt with the sin that separates us from him, and can bring us to know him once again.
Christians believe that God is Trinity. This means there are three distinct persons of the Trinity and one God. 3 persons; 1 God. There is God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit; they are all unique and all equally God. We have written previous answers regarding the Trinity which you can find on our website and read here: www.lookingforgod.com/pdf/question/1079
Here are some more Bible Verses for your further consideration:
- Exodus 34:5-8
- Philippians 2:5-9
- Titus 3:4-8
I hope this answer helps you to find peace with God through Jesus Christ. If you want to know more about what Jesus has done for you please watch the video on the main part of our site: Watch the video
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*All Scripture references are taken From The English Standard Version of the Holy Bible unless stated otherwise
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