Teaching Copyright (C) 1999 John Iuliano (M.A. Min). All rights reserved. Published here with permission.
We believe in the unity of the true and living God who is the eternal, self existent One, who has revealed Himself as one being in three persons – Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and who is the Creator and preserver of things visible and invisible – Deut 6:4, Mark 12:29; Matt 28:19;
Genesis 1:1; Psalm 86:9-10; Isaiah 43:10-11; John 1:1-3.
The Bible doesn't argue God's existence; it assumes it. His existence is accepted as fact.
Trying to define God is not an easy task because He is greater than our finite thinking. We tend to think in terms of a beginning and an end, size, dimension, volume, capacity and things that can be scientifically evaluated. God surpasses all these measurements. He has no beginning and no end. He was not created nor will He ever be consumed. The Bible ascribes to God some of the following attributes:
Having no beginning and no end.
Ps 90:2, "Even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God."
The word everlasting literally means vanishing point. It is a mathematical expression, which refers to infinity in the past extending to infinity in the future. God had no beginning and He has no end. He is eternal.
2. Self existent.
Not dependant on anything except self for life existence.
Col 1:17, "And He is before all things and in Him all things consist."
He was not created or mysteriously appeared. He is the absolute source of all life and creator of all things that have ever existed both visible and invisible. God is not dependant on any source outside Himself for His being or essence. He is self-existent.
Matthew 3:6, "For I am the Lord, I change not".
Man has a tendency to change from day to day, but God is consistently the same. His character, His reasoning, His Word, never changes. There is no variation in God. He is immutable.
Being everywhere at the same time.
Jeremiah 23:24, "Can anyone hide himself in secret places, so I shall not see him?” says the Lord, "Do I not fill heaven and earth?" says the Lord.
God is not in everything, but He is everywhere. Wherever you may go God is there. He is in heaven and also on the earth. Wherever two or three are gathered together, He is in the midst. How reassuring it is to know that wherever you are, even in your darkest place, God is there.
Knowing everything past, present and future.
Psalm 139:4, "For there is not a word on my tongue, but behold O Lord, you know it altogether".
There is nothing that happens in the universe of which God is unaware. Every thought, every deed, every dream, God has knowledge of it. He also has total wisdom and total understanding. Man is discovering new things every day of which God has had eternal knowledge. It is assuring to know that God in His wisdom has made plans for our lives that will bring us total satisfaction. It is essential for us to trust the fact that God knows best because He knows everything.
Jer 32:17, "Ah, Lord God, behold You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and outstretched arm. There is nothing too hard for You."
The nuclear power that men have at their disposal is insignificant to the power that God exhibited in creating the earth. His power is immeasurable and beyond human comprehension. What have we to fear when we realise that the One who loves us is greater than all the combined power in the universe. He is all powerful.
The highest authority.
Gen 14:21, "I have lifted my hand to the Lord God Most High, the possessor of heaven and earth".
God rules in heaven, on earth and under the earth. He is sovereign over angels, principalities, demons and satan himself. Because He made all things, He also rules over all realms and He is in control. There isn't a problem for which God doesn't have a solution. He can handle any difficulty because He is sovereign.
8. The Tri-unity (Trinity) of God.
Our human mind has difficulty in understanding the Divine mystery of the triunity of the Godhead.
Deut 6:4, "Hear O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is One".
Clearly there is only one God but He is revealed in three persons – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The three are not the same person with a different name but three distinct personalities; i.e. the Father is not the Son, nor the Son the Holy Spirit, nor the Holy Spirit the Father. All are co-equal and co-eternal. They are distinct yet one.
a. Even though God is one, he is revealed in three persons.
1. Matthew 3:16-17 records the story of Jesus' baptism. Here we see Jesus in the water, the Holy Spirit descending like a dove and the Father in heaven saying, "This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased". We see the distinction of each person.
2. Matthew 28:19 tells us to make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Again we see the distinction of the three persons.
3. 2 Corinthians 13:14 is the apostolic benediction. "The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all, Amen".
b. We also have clear Biblical references of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit as God.
1. Father. Ephesians 4:6 – "One God and Father of all, who is above all and through all and in you all". The Father is called God.
2. Son. Titus 2:13 "Looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Saviour Jesus Christ". Jesus Christ is called God.
3. Holy Spirit Acts 5:3,4. "Ananias, why has satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit? ….. You have not lied to men, but to God." The Holy Spirit is called God.
c. The Westminister Confession gives us a good summary of how we are to understand the tri-unity of the Godhead.
"There is but one living and true God. In the unity of the Godhead there are three persons, of one substance, power and eternity – God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. The Father is one, neither begotten nor proceeding; the Son is eternally begotten of the Father, the Holy Spirit eternally proceeding from the Father and the Son".
The aspiration of all men should be to know and worship God. The greater the knowledge of God, the greater our faith will be. The more we know God the less we will doubt, the less we will fear, the less we will suffer anxiety and the less we will feel alone. He is our all-sufficiency and He constantly desires to impart to us any good and perfect gift.
How incredible it is to think that this all powerful, all sufficient God created us to have intimacy with Him. Our completeness can only be fully found when we enter into relationship with Almighty God.