Following is an English transcript of the message from this morning.
Have you ever found yourself asking if there is a God out there? And if there is, can I know who He is, or what He’s like? Does He see the things I’m going through? Does He care? Or is He perhaps causing the troubles I face?
“The Lord is watching everywhere, keeping his eye on both the evil and the good.”
Proverbs 15:3 NLT
““For God watches how people live; he sees everything they do.”
Job 34:21 NLT
Some people say there is no god. They call themselves atheists or agnostics and go through life with themselves as the only god of their universe. I cannot get inside the mind of such a person, but I honestly wonder if anyone truly believes there is no god. It seems everyone comes to acknowledge the existence of a higher being when they are faced with sudden danger or with death. What’s hard is acknowledging God when life is easy.
“Only fools say in their hearts, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, and their actions are evil; not one of them does good!”
Psalms 14:1 NLT
I can tell you without a doubt there is a God. I’ve met Him. I talk with Him all the time. My whole life revolves around Him and what He wants for me. I wish everyone could know God like I know Him–or even better! Of course, there is a way to discover who God is. In fact, He is trying to show himself to you. He’s not far away.
“The Lord is close to all who call on him, yes, to all who call on him in truth.”
Psalms 145:18 NLT
“Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world.”
James 4:8 NLT
The best place to go to learn about God is the Bible. The Bible is an ancient book comprised of multiple other books written over a span of hundreds of years by many authors from different cultures and eras. Yet, the Bible is homogenous, that is, the various books agree with each other and tell one unified story. Though many men wrote those various books, the Bible is considered as God’s own Word because He inspired the authors with what to say. That becomes evident as you read and study the Bible as a whole.
Looking to the Bible, let’s answer the question of who God is. We’ll first look at what is God’s name. First, we need to understand that the Bible was not written in English. The oldest books were written in Hebrew or Aramaic, and some of the later books were written in Greek. The Bible was translated into English thousands of years after the original manuscripts.
In the English and Spanish versions, there are over one hundred names for God in the Bible. However, in the original Hebrew, there are many hundreds more names. When it was translated into English, some of those distinct Hebrew names were absorbed into others to make one common or encompassing name. How can God have hundreds of names? And which one should we call Him?
All those names for God are not exactly His name at all; rather, they are descriptions or terms for His character. In the Book of Exodus, Moses asked God what His name was, and God replied, “I AM.” God is infinite in all ways we can think of being infinite. That’s what makes Him God, after all.
So, when we pray to God, we can call Him Almighty, Sovereign, King, Lord, Master, Holy One–any of the hundreds of descriptions that describe His character. God is Omnipotent (all-powerful), Omniscient (all-knowing), Omnipresent (everywhere present), Immanuel (God with us). God is Love. God is infinite. God is.
“God replied to Moses, “ I AM WHO I AM. Say this to the people of Israel: I AM has sent me to you.””
Exodus 3:14 NLT
“For a child is born to us, a son is given to us. The government will rest on his shoulders. And he will be called: Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”
Isaiah 9:6 NLT
“Pray like this: Our Father in heaven, may your name be kept holy. May your Kingdom come soon. May your will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us today the food we need, and forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us. And don’t let us yield to temptation, but rescue us from the evil one.”
Matthew 6:9-13 NLT
That can be a lot to absorb. And it’s difficult to explain in just this message. That’s why you should read the Bible for yourself. The Bible begins with the history of how the world began. Even before time or the earth was created, God was there. From there, the Bible tells the story of how we humans were created, and then how we fell away from God into disobedience, which is sin.
The rest of the story is taken up with how God has worked to win man back for Himself. Because mankind chose disobedience, we came under the rule of God’s enemy Satan, also known as the devil. Ever afterward, all people have chosen to rebel against God’s way of love and righteousness. We are all selfish by nature. That sinful nature separates us from God and makes us worthy of His judgement.
That’s another thing we learn about God throughout the history of the Bible. God is holy. He has no darkness or any wrong thing in Him. He is perfect in every way, and as a result of His complete holiness, no evil thing can come into His presence without being destroyed. That would leave us without hope except for God’s love.
““For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.”
John 3:16 NLT
“Whatever is good and perfect is a gift coming down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens. He never changes or casts a shifting shadow.”
James 1:17 NLT
“This is the message we heard from Jesus and now declare to you: God is light, and there is no darkness in him at all.”
1 John 1:5 NLT
There is only one God, though there are three parts of God, in a sense. There is God the Father, God the Son (called Jesus), and God the Spirit. These three beings work together in perfect unity. This is another reason why God has so many names, as it were, because of the three persons of God. Again, that may sound confusing until you read the Bible and learn who God is and how these three, sometimes called the Trinity, work together.
“After his baptism, as Jesus came up out of the water, the heavens were opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and settling on him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy.””
Matthew 3:16-17 NLT
“Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.”
Matthew 28:19 NLT
“But when the Father sends the Advocate as my representative—that is, the Holy Spirit—he will teach you everything and will remind you of everything I have told you.”
John 14:26 NLT
“No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us, and his love is brought to full expression in us.”
1 John 4:12 NLT
God the Father is ruler over all. Sin can never enter into His presence. Thus, we are doomed to die for our sins. But God loves mankind, His greatest creation. He loves us so much that He made us in His image. You want to know what God looks like? He looks like a person, or we at least look like Him. Isn’t that incredible?
“But you are pure and cannot stand the sight of evil. Will you wink at their treachery? Should you be silent while the wicked swallow up people more righteous than they?”
Habakkuk 1:13 NLT
“Then God said, “Let us make human beings in our image, to be like us. They will reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, the livestock, all the wild animals on the earth, and the small animals that scurry along the ground.” So God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.”
Genesis 1:26-27 NLT
And His love for us was so great, that He provided a way for us to be freed from Satan, from the curse of sin, and from the punishment of eternal death. He did that by sending His only Son, Jesus, to die as a sacrifice that would bring atonement for man’s sin (Atonement is reconciling God and man by restoring man to an open and right relationship with God). Then He offered us the gift of new life by accepting Jesus as King of our lives. This is a spiritual change that also changes our physical lives. Want to know more about that? Read the Book of John to learn about Jesus’ life on earth.
“Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.”
John 14:6 NLT
“For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Romans 6:23 NLT
“Just as everyone dies because we all belong to Adam, everyone who belongs to Christ will be given new life.”
1 Corinthians 15:22 NLT
Reading the story of God in the Bible we learn many truths about Him. For example, God is a man; not a human man, but a male. He says that those who love and obey Him call Him Father. Also, there is only one true God. He proves that by many signs and wonders and fulfilled prophecies. Mary is not God. Allah is not God. Buddha is not God. Mother Nature is not God. A Supreme Goodness within every person is not God. Science is not God. Praying to anyone or anything who is not God is a grave sin against God. This is idolatry. No one but God can hear our prayers.
““You must not have any other god but me. “You must not make for yourself an idol of any kind or an image of anything in the heavens or on the earth or in the sea. You must not bow down to them or worship them, for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God who will not tolerate your affection for any other gods. I lay the sins of the parents upon their children; the entire family is affected—even children in the third and fourth generations of those who reject me. But I lavish unfailing love for a thousand generations on those who love me and obey my commands.”
Exodus 20:3-6 NLT
“The idols of the nations are merely things of silver and gold, shaped by human hands. They have mouths but cannot speak, and eyes but cannot see. They have ears but cannot hear, and mouths but cannot breathe. And those who make idols are just like them, as are all who trust in them.”
Psalms 135:15-18 NLT
“And I will be your Father, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty. ””
2 Corinthians 6:18 NLT
God created the world and set rules in place for how it is to run and for how man is to care for it. God has since stayed intimately involved in the daily lives of mankind. He sustains and maintains the natural order of things. Though the earth and man have fallen into the rule of the devil, God has set a time where Satan will be removed and punished forever, and all those who follow the devil’s way of disobedience and separation to God will also be punished.
God is outside of time in what we call eternity. Some people think of eternity as forever, but eternity is more accurately a place where there is no time. Time doesn’t exist in eternity. That’s something we can’t comprehend. Everything about everything we do on earth is governed by time. We are all moving headlong at a rapid pace through time. Each of our times has an end, and one day, time itself will come to an end.
God has no beginning and no end. He is infinite. That’s again something we cannot process. How could there be something that has no beginning?Everything on earth has a beginning and an end, but that’s what makes God God. If He were limited as we were, He would be nothing more than a glorified human. He is infinitely greater than we can imagine.
“Before the mountains were born, before you gave birth to the earth and the world, from beginning to end, you are God.”
Psalms 90:2 NLT
“The high and lofty one who lives in eternity, the Holy One, says this: “I live in the high and holy place with those whose spirits are contrite and humble. I restore the crushed spirit of the humble and revive the courage of those with repentant hearts.”
Isaiah 57:15 NLT
““I am the Alpha and the Omega—the beginning and the end,” says the Lord God. “I am the one who is, who always was, and who is still to come—the Almighty One.””
Revelation 1:8 NLT
Because God is outside of time, time does not pass for Him in eternity. Thus, He views the events on earth through a completely different framework. The Bible says that one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as a day to God. Because He sees the end from the beginning, and because He is not bound by time, He operates on a completely different schedule of cosmic proportions.
It has now been over six thousand years since the earth was created, and the devil introduced sin. The devil has ruled over man and the earth ever since, always seeking to deceive man and lead us away from God. But for God, it is but as a blink of an eye. For man, the reality of sin and suffering feels like forever.
“The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent.”
2 Peter 3:9 NLT
But God has redeemed us through Jesus. He bought us back from the devil, as it were. But He leaves the choice for our allegiance up to us. We choose our own way of selfishness and sin, which is the way of the devil, and receive the eternal consequences. Or we can choose to give our lives to God and make Jesus our King and live forever with God in heaven after this life on earth is over. Then we will finally learn to know completely who God is.