God is not an it to be defined as if we can know God in that way. We have tried for a very long time. The Christian faith has been blessed enough to have God revealed to us through the Holy Spirit. Even then, however, we can only see God’s revelation in part. Other religions have tried to understand the unseen reality. Hinduism tries to escape into the divine by getting out of Karma. Tribal religions have made God’s that fit their community’s needs. Some have proposed that everything is God. Others have tried to discount God’s existence altogether. One thing is for sure, that the existence and nature of God has been on our minds all throughout history. The differences prove one thing, that we have a tendency in our search for God to apply our own desires and ambitions onto Him. We try to make Him in our image, but is not in our image.
This series on the relationship between God and man has to start with the question what is God? Your view of God will effect your own life in profound ways. A violent God leads to a violent community. A loving God will lead to a loving community. Something in our brains tend to associate our own character to what we believe about God. Even a belief that God does not exist will transform your worldview. In the Christian scriptures, we have a clear vision of God through Christ. Though most of the religious beliefs surrounding the scriptures were filled with mishaps and make us question God’s plan at times, when we see God through Jesus, we see a kind and benevolent God with a plan for ultimate peace for the world. Such a vision of God implies that God is an independent entity with characteristics. He is not everything and he is not a nirvana existence. He is a God independent of His creation who has chosen humanity as his beloved.
God’s independence is a very important factor when considering what He is. That separateness means we cannot be God, something tried by Adam and Eve in the Genesis account of the Fall of Man. The Christian message is that God is not the same as His creation, and since He is creator above His creation, He is holy or sacred. This kind of being is one that has the ability to do anything and everything. This would mean that He has supreme power over His creation. If this Is what God is, we would naturally have a sense of fear towards such a towering being.
Being all-powerful and sacred could lead to the assumption that this being is not able to interact with us since we are only the creation, much like a child with building blocks who when putting the blocks together can never meaningfully relate to his creation. God is different. From the second He puts the world together, He decides to fully embrace it and exist within its history. God decides to be a knowable being. He positions Himself to be experienced and be transformational. He has chosen to reveal to us what we are ready to understand. There is much we still do not understand, and God is a mystery that we will never fully understand until He is fully revealed at His return. There are some that might say that not knowing the mystery means we cannot truly make the claims of the Church absolute since we cannot know the mystery. It is true that we cannot fathom the unseen, that is, unless the unseen reveals itself. If it chooses to reveal itself, it can be known, not from our own effort, but from Its reaching to us. This is what most will miss, hat knowing God is not about what you theorize about God, but what He chooses to reveal to you.
Assuming this God really exists and if the Bible is right, God is an independent being that is the most powerful force in the universe because He created the universe. Yet He has chosen to be with this world in a very intimate way. This leads us into God’s character which will be for the next post. It will also spark a conversation about His plans for the world. For now, we must consider the possibility that this God is real and that He has revealed Himself to us. Revelation is the only way we can experience the great unknown and begin to understand what He is and then what He is like.
(This post might contrast the following views: God is unknown and we can make no claims about Him, all religions lead to the same God, God is not real. The proof here is not academic. There is actually not much proof at all, except that God can be and must be experienced through Him revealing Himself to us through His Spirit.)