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Theology - The Doctrine of God
THEOLOGY (The Doctrine of God)
OUTLINE FOR CHAPTER I
I. The Names and Titles of God.
D. Jehovistic Combinations.
E. Eloistic Combinations.
II. The Existence of God.
A. False and True Systems of Theology.
B. Evidence of the Existence of God.
III. The nature of God.
A. Definitions of God.
B. Spirituality of God.
C. Personality of God.
D. The Trinity of God.
E. The Self-existence of God.
F. The Infinity of God.
IV. The Attributes of God
V. The Fatherhood of God.
A. Old Testament Teaching.
B. New Testament Teaching.
The word theology comes from the Greek word theos, meaning
God. Thus, theology is the doctrine of God. To begin the study of the
many Bible doctrines we must begin with the Source of all things - God!
We must begin with God there is no one, nothing, before Him.
Before anything came into being, He was: in the beginning God
(Gen. 1:1); God, who at sundry times and in divers manners (Heb.1:1);
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and
the Word was God (John 1:1).
The first things we shall study are:
I. THE NAMES AND TITLES OF GOD
The name of a person, place, or thing is that by which it is known.
The names of God are those by which He is known. They denote His character.
Yes, the names of the Lord are those by which He is known to His people;
Save me, 0 God, by thy name (Ps. 54: la); They that
know thy name will put their trust in thee (Ps: 9: 10).
The King James Version distinguishes the names of God by the use of
printers type. Thus, when you read in the Bible the word God,
you know that it is translated from the Hebrew word Elohim; the words
LORD, GOD, LORD GOD, LORD
God are from the Hebrew word Jehovah; and the word lord
is from the word Adonai. Each of these words, Elohim, Jehovah and Adonai,
describes the character of God and of His actions toward mankind, distinguishing
between the saint and the sinner.
The word Elohim, which is translated as God, is found more
than twenty-three hundred times in Scripture. Yet this is not a personal
name of God, but it is Gods official title what He is,
God! Elohim! The word Elohim is not only used for God, but for
men (I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of
the most High Ps. 82:6 with John 10:34, 35) and for idols
(Thou shalt make thee no molten gods Ex. 34:17).
It is the title of God just as the word president is the
title of an office. The President is the official title of the chief
executive of the United States. It is not his name, but his title. And
likewise, there are many kinds of presidents: of companies, missionary
societies, etc. Gods official name is Elohim His office.
Elohim is a plural noun. At once we say plural means two or more. This
is true in English, but not so in the Hebrew language. We have two numbers
in English: singular, meaning one; plural, two or more. In the Hebrew,
however, we have three numbers: singular, meaning one; dual, equaling
two; plural, denoting three or more. Thus, Elohim is a plural noun
three or more. Genesis 1:1 states: In the beginning God [three
or more] created the heaven and the earth. Another suggestion
of the Trinity is found in Genesis 1:26, 27: And God [Elohim]
said, Let us make man in our image.
The literal meaning of Elohim is The Putter-forth of Power, The Strong
One. And in the first chapter of Genesis, Elohim is described as putting
forth His power in these ten words: created, made (fashioned), moved,
said, saw, called, divided, set, ended and blessed.
No creature has power but that which God has given him. Power belongeth
unto God. Man has to work for his power in all phases of life; God only
has to speak, and it is done. God not only creates, but keeps what He
brings forth out of nothing.
Elohim (God) has power in government. Daniel pointed this out, and Nebuchadnezzar
had to experience it that the living may know that the most High
ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will, and
setteth up over it the basest of men (Dan. 4:17). With pride filling
his heart, Nebuchadnezzar was struck with madness until he acknowledged
that the Most High did rule. Then only did his reason return unto him,
and he became a firm believer in this truth.
Elohim (God) has power in judgment, whether upon man or nation. When
He smites, none can resist Him.
El is the singular form of Elohim. It is found two hundred and fifty
times in Scripture. It is used in the proper names of men, such as Samuel
(asked of God) and Elijah (Jehovah is my God).
Remember, the words GOD and LORD (all capital letters) in the King James
version are best translated Jehovah. Jehovah is the personal name of
God. It is that Name which is above every other name. The meaning of
the word is Redeemer. Every time it is used in the Scriptures it is
connected with deliverance by God: And it came to pass, when the
captains of the chariots saw Jehoshaphat, that they said, It is the
king of Israel. Therefore they compassed about him to fight: but Jehoshaphat
cried out and the LORD [Jehovah] helped him; and God moved them to depart
from him (II Chron. 18:31).
While the personal name of God, Jehovah, was written, it was never pronounced.
The Jews considered that name too sacred to be spoken by human lips.
It is a possibility that this pronunciation is not correct even today,
for the Hebrew language is written without any vowels. The name Jehovah,
in the Hebrew, is spelled JHVH. We trust that we are pronouncing it
correctly: It could be pronounced Jeheveh, or Jihivih, or Jahavah, or
many other different ways. When the scribes came to this name Jehovah
to copy, they washed their bodies, and the pens with which they spelled
this name were cleansed. Even in public, when readers of sacred Scriptures
came to this word they would not pronounce it, fearing they would take
it in vain, but would substitute the word Elohim or Adonai in its place.
One reason why the word Jehovah was suppressed was to impress its sacredness
upon the minds of the people.
When the LORD [Jehovah] appeared unto Moses in the burning bush, and
commissioned him to lead the children of Israel out of Egypt into the
Promised Land, Moses asked, When I come unto the children of Israel,
and say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and
they shall say to me, What is his name? what shall I say unto them?
God said unto him, I AM THAT I AM ... I AM hath sent me unto you
(Ex. 3:13, 14). Jehovah is the eternal I AM. There is no past nor future
with Jehovah; He is the Eternal Present, the self-existent One
One that made Himself known.
In Exodus 20:2 we read: I am the LORD thy God
am Jehovah thy Elohim. There were many different Elohims, but
there was only one Jehovah. You read in the Word, the Elohim of
Israel; but never, the Jehovah of Israel; for there
were no more Jehovahs. When Elijah and the prophets of Baal had a contest,
it was to determine which was Elohim (God), Jehovah or Baal.
Yes, Jehovah was always related in a redemptive way with his own people,
but His relationship to His creatures (this includes unregenerate men)
was always as Elohim. The same today. God is God of all the unsaved,
but He is Jehovah, the Father, of all who are saved. The Book of Jonah
illustrates this. In chapters three and four the people called upon
Elohim, but Jonah called upon Jehovah! They were lost; he was saved.
They became saved, and could, after their salvation, call God Jehovah.
See other Scriptures: Judges 7:14, 15; II Chronicles 19:6-9; Genesis
7:16; I Samuel 17:46.
We have another name for God, and that is JAH. It is found only once
in the King James version, but it occurs forty-eight other times in
the corrected translations. Some Bible scholars believe that JAH is
an abbreviation of Jehovah. The meaning is the same. Sing unto
God, sing praises to his name: extol him that rideth upon the heavens
by his name JAH, and rejoice before him (Ps. 68:4). The name JAH
is always connected with praise, and is first found in Exodus 15:2.
We believe that the word God (Elohim), being plural in Genesis
1:1, definitely suggests that the Trinity created the heavens and the
earth. Yet we find that modern thought interprets this differently.
Modern thought says that this portion of the Word should read, In
the beginning Gods created the heavens and the earth. And the
reason for this, they say, is that Israel, to begin with, believed in
many gods, but that their religion evolved into monotheism. This form
of reasoning has proved difficult to many college students. Is there
any Scripture which will refute this? Absolutely. Turn to Deuteronomy
6:4 Hear, 0 Israel: the Lord our God is one Lord.
Now, put the correct words of Elohim and Jehovah in this passage and
you will see that the Word plainly reveals the Trinity of Genesis 1:1:
Hear, 0 Israel, JEHOVAH our ELOHIM [three or more persons] is
one JEHOVAH. Therefore, man began with a belief in one God and
later degenerated into the depths and changed the glory of the
uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to
birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things (Rom. 1:23).
The term Adonai really means master, or owner; one who owns, one who
rules, one who blessed his own. It is found first in Genesis 15:1, 2:
After these things the word of the LORD came unto Abram in a vision,
saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward.
And Abram said, Lord GOD, what wilt thou give me, seeing I go childless,
and the steward of my house is this Eliezer of Damascus?
Adonai can always be known by the word Lord, or lord
in the Old Testament of the King James Version. There are two different
forms of this word: Adon, which is singular, and Adonai, which is plural.
Adonai is used two ways in the Scriptures when related to man and his
earthly relationships: As a master of his slaves And the
servant put his hand under the thigh of Abraham his master, and sware
to him concerning that matter. And the servant took ten camels of the
camels of his master, and departed; for all the goods of his master
(Gen. 24:9, l0a); and as a husband to his wife Even as
Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord [Adonai]
3:6a). See also Genesis 18:12.
A Hebrew could sell himself to another Hebrew, who became his master.
But he could not sell himself forever; for at the Sabbatical Year, or
the Year of Jubilee, all slaves were freed. Yet, there was a way by
which a slave could become a slave forever, and that was by choice:
And if the servant shall plainly say, I love my master, my wife,
and my children; I will not go out free: then his master shall bring
him unto the judges; he shall also bring him to the door, or unto the
door post; and his master shall bore his ear through with an aul; and
he shall serve him for ever (Ex. 21:5, 6). Paul said that he was
a bond slave (servant) of Jesus Christ, bought by blood and bound by
Love! Every time you use the name Lord Jesus Christ, you say, He
is my Master. Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well;
for so I am (John 13:13).
D. Jehovistic Combinations.
1. Jehovah-jireh the Lord will provide. Abraham
called the name of that place Jehovah-jireh: as it is said to this day,
In the mount of the LORD it shall be seen (Gen. 22:14).
This was the occasion when Abraham led his son, his only begotten son,
Isaac, to the mount. Isaac carried the wood; Abraham carried the knife
and the fire. His son asked the whereabouts of the sacrifice. To this
Father Abraham replied, God will provide himself a lamb for a
burnt-offering. And God did! Before Abraham could kill his son
as a sacrifice demanded by God, the angel of the LORD stayed his hand;
his eyes looked upon the thicket and saw the ram which the LORD had
provided. Nearly two thousand years ago the Son of God carried, Himself,
a wooden burden, the Cross; and the Father held the fire (which speaks
of judgment), and the knife (which speaks of death), and God did provide
Himself a Sacrifice for our sins His Son, our Lord and Saviour,
Jesus Christ. Have you found Him to be your Jehovah jireh? Whatever
may come, remember, He is Jehovah-jireh the LORD will provide.
2. Jehovah-Rapha the Lord that healeth. [The
LORD] said, If thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of the LORD
thy God, and wilt do that which is right in his sight, and wilt give
ear to his commandments, and keep all his statutes, I will put none
of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians:
for I am the LORD [Jehovah Rapha] that healeth thee (Ex. 15:26).
He is LORD, The Physician. The way this is used is not, I will
cure your diseases; but, I wont put sickness upon
The world is called the sick world; Livingstone called
Africa the open sore; and the reason for this is the deep
wound of sin! The word heal is an interesting word and means
to repair, mend, cure. And there is perfect cure in Jehovah-Rapha, for
by his stripes we are healed (I Peter 2:24). See also Psalm
3. Jehovah-nissi the Lord our Banner. Moses
built an altar, and called the name of it Jehovah-nissi (Ex. 17:15).
The LORD is our Victory. Christ crucified is our Banner of Victory!
4. Jehovah-Qadash the LORD that doth sanctify. Ye
shall keep my statutes, and do them: I am the LORD [Jehovah-Qadash]
which sanctify you (Lev. 20:8). And God is the same LORD of the
Christian as of the Hebrew: Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy
will, 0 God. . . . By the which will we are sanctified through the offering
of the body of Jesus Christ once for all (Heb. 10:9, 10). See
also Hebrews 10:14, and Exodus 31:13.
5. Jehovah-shalom the LORD our Peace. Then
Gideon built an altar there unto the LORD, and called it Jehovah- shalom:
unto this day it is yet in Ophrah of the Abiezrites (Judg. 6:24).
There is only one way to secure peace today, and that is through the
Lord Jesus Christ. He is our Peace: For he is our peace, who hath
made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between
us (Eph. 2:14). See also Romans 5:1.
6. Jehovah-Tsidkenu the LORD our Righteousness. In
his days Judah shall he saved, and Israel shall dwell safely: and this
is his name whereby he shall be called, THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS
(Jer. 23:6). Israel shall be restored to the Land of Promise once again,
and during the Millennium Jehovah shall be called Jehovah-Tsidkenu
the LORD our Righteousness. The LORD did come, the only
righteous one, yet they crucified Him. But one day He shall come the
second time, and Israel shall claim the Lord Jesus Christ as their own
Righteousness. Christ Jesus is the only Righteousness that any can claim.
7. Jehovah-Shammah the LORD is There. It was
round about eighteen thousand measures: and the name of the city from
that day shall be, The LORD [Jehovah-Shammah] is there (Ezek.
48:35). When Israel is restored to the land, and the earth shall be
full of knowledge of the LORD, Jerusalem shall be called Jehovah-Shammah
the LORD is There.
8. Jehovah-Sabaoth the LORD of Host. This man went
up out of his city yearly to worship and to sacrifice unto the LORD
of hosts [Jehovah-Sabaoth] in Shiloh (I Sam. 1: 3a). Israel is
the Host; the LORD is the LORD of Hosts. See also Exodus 12:41; II Kings
6:14-23; Romans 9:29; James 5:4.
9. Jehovah Ra-ah the LORD my Shepherd. The
LORD [Jehovah Ra-ah] is my shepherd; I shall not want. (Ps. 23:1).
One time a little girl was quoting this verse, and this is the way she
said it: The LORD is my Shepherd, why should I worry? Have
you found that Source of Strength? Have you found perfect peace by following
the Saviour wherever He leads? Fears will not annoy; darkness cannot
distress; poverty is not able to destroy if Jesus is your Jehovah Ra-ah
E. Eloistic Combinations.
As there are the Jehovistic combinations, so are there the Eloistic
1. El Elyon Most High God. Melchizedek king
of Salem brought forth bread and wine: and he was the priest of the
most high God [El Elyon] (Gen. 14:18). Here in the King James
Version the name is translated most high God. Elyon means
highest; with El it means the most high God. See also Deuteronomy 32:8;
Daniel 4:34, 35. Jesus Christ is our El Elyon All power
[authority] is given unto me in heaven and in earth (Matt. 28:18b).
2. El Olam Everlasting God. Abraham planted
a grove in Beer-sheba, and called there on the name of the LORD, the
everlasting [El Olam] God (Gen. 21:33). Yes, God is the Everlasting
God the God of All Ages.
3. El Shaddai Almighty God. This is first found in
Genesis 17:1: When Abram was ninety years old and nine, the LORD
appeared to Abram, and said unto him, I am the Almighty God [El Shaddai];
walk before me, and be thou perfect. El means the
Strong One. Shaddai comes from the word shad, meaning a breast, a womans
breast. This is illustrated by that portion found in Isaiah 28:9. El
Shaddai, therefore, means the Breast of God, the Nourisher, Strength-giver,
One of the most cherished names of God held by Bible students everywhere
is this one the Breast of God, the Strength-giver, the All-Sufficient
God, the All-Bountiful God, the God Who is Enough! the God Who is Able.
He is able also to save them to the uttermost (Heb. 7:25).
Why? Because Jesus Christ our Lord is our El Shaddai The
God Who is Able.
II. THE EXISTENCE OF GOD
A. False and True Systems of Theology.
1. Deism. This system acknowledges that there is a God, but denies that
God sustains the creation. God is the Maker, but not the Keeper.
2. Atheism. Those who hold to this belief so called
exclude God altogether.
3. Skepticism and Infidelity. Skeptics and infidels are full of doubt
and disbelief with regard to God, especially the God of Revelation.
4. Agnosticism. This school of thought does not deny God, but denies
that God can be known.
5. Pantheism. Everything is God, and God is everything. Everything you
see is God. God is in everything. God and creation are synonymous.
6. Polytheism. This is belief in many Gods. There are various gods over
us; these in turn have gods over them; and these have gods over them,
and so on.
7. Tritheism. This is the doctrine of three Gods.
8. Dualism. This is the belief in two Gods; a God that is Good, and
a God that is Bad. They are both equal in power and persuasion.
9. Theism. The belief in the existence of a personal God is known as
theism. Should one boast in this, his boasting is vain, for one must
know who God is, what His name is, in order to trust Him.
10. Monotheism. This is the doctrine of one God. We are monotheists.
Jews and Mohammedans are monotheists. If that is true, are they saved?
No! Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well; the
devils also believe, and tremble (Jas. 2:19) Believing in one
God is not sufficient, but if thou shalt confess with thy mouth
the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised
him from the dead, thou shalt he saved (Rom. 10:9).
B. Evidence of the Existence of God.
May the student realize that the Bible never tries to prove there is
a God. It assumes that man knows that there is a God, and states, The
fool hath said in his heart, There is no God (Ps. 14:1).
There are many evidences of the existence of God, the first being:
1. From Reason. (The Intellectual).
a. The Intuitional Argument: That which is in man, sometimes called
the first-truths; that belief that knows that there is a
God without anyone revealing that fact. A child knows there is a God.
Who has told him? All races of the world know there is a God, though
they are not worshiping the One and Only and True God. There is no such
thing as a true atheist. The evidence of the existence of God is in
man born in him.
b. The Cosmological Argument: This is the argument from cause and effect.
Here is the world how did it come to be? There is a Cause or
Power behind everything. There must be a Maker or Creator. It is easy
to think that back of the Creation is God, but it is impossible to think
back of God.
c. The Teleological Argument: By this we mean design. There is perfect
design and order in the universe. The snowflake is a beautiful pattern
that man could never duplicate. Why does ice rise to the top of the
water and not to the bottom when it freezes? Should this not be so,
then all water would eventually freeze, and the fish would perish. How
is it possible that spring, summer, fall and winter all come in order,
and have been doing so for millenniums? Why is it that the sun comes
no closer to the earth (melting it) nor goes further away from it (freezing
it)? There must be a Designer behind all creation and that Designer
d. The Anthropological Argument: This argument is based upon the moral
and intellectual qualities of man. Man is a direct result of the creation
of God, as other creatures are, yet these creatures do not possess the
moral and intellectual qualities of man. Why? If man could create them,
so could animals. But man has the capacity to know, to reason. If man
did not get these qualities from some One, where did he get them?
2. From History. Truly, history is His story! History verifies the fact
that there is a God. History has proved the fact of God against those
who have repudiated His law. Thus, Christians should never worry over
world conditions. God is on His throne. Nothing can happen, but by His
will. Someone has said, Prophecy is the mould of history.
God speaks, and years later what He spoke is fulfilled to the letter,
History only fulfills what God has said would happen. History proves
there is a God!
3. From Experience. This is one of the greatest proofs yet for the existence
of God. Men have been transformed by the power of God. There is no explanation
other than God! Prayers which have been answered attest to the existence
4. From Scripture.
a. Biblical Assumption. The Bible is the only Book that is God-inspired.
The Bible is the standard for all right conduct in the world. If the
Bible is not the Word of God, then we have no God; we can never know
b. Christological Revelation. In Jesus Christ, God came down to man
to tell us what God is like. If Jesus is not God, then there is no God.
God can never be known. No man bath seen God at any time; the
only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared
him (John 1:18). But Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and He and
His life prove the existence of God!
c. Prophetical Declaration. God forecast the future. Anyone who can
do this is more than man. Man cannot always tell the past, much less
the future. It is said that when Christ was crucified there were twenty-five
distinct prophecies fulfilled prophecies written centuries before.
III. THE NATURE OF GOD.
A. Definitions of God.
1. Scriptural Definitions.
a. God is Spirit God is a spirit: and they that worship
him must worship him in spirit and in truth (John 4:24).
b. God is Light This then is the message which we have
heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is
no darkness at all (I John 1:5).
c. God is Love He that loveth not knoweth not God; for
God is love (I John 4:8).
d. God is a Consuming Fire For our God is a consuming fire
2. Theological Definitions.
a. Westminster Catechism: God is a Spirit, Infinite, Eternal,
and Unchangeable in His Being, Wisdom, Power, Holiness, Justice, Goodness
b. Dr. Strong: God is the Infinite and Perfect Spirit.
The Source of all things, the Support of all things, the End of all
c. Andrew Fuller; God is the First Cause and Last End of
d. Ebrards: God is the Eternal Source of all that is temporal.
B. Spirituality of God.
1. His Essence. He is a Spiritual Being (God is a Spirit
John 4:24), invisible (Who is the image of the invisible
God Col. 1:15a). What is a spirit? A spirit is a being
without flesh and bones. Behold my hands and my feet, that it
is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones,
as ye see me have (Luke 24:39). A spirit has a body, a spirit-body;
but it has no natural body, no material body. God cannot be seen by
human eye; God, in His pure essence, has never been seen. No man
hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom
of the Father, he hath declared him (John 1:18).
2. His Manifestations. While God, in His true essence, has never been
seen, yet He hath shown Himself, revealed His Person to man in different
forms. The Scriptures ask, To whom then will ye liken me, or shall
I be equal? saith the Holy One (Is. 40:25). Man cannot know God
but in the way He has revealed Himself. Are we not glad that God has
revealed Himself in His Son? Where Christ is the image of God, the Anti-christ
shall be an imitation.
There seems to be some contradictions in the Word; in some places it
says that people saw God: The LORD spake unto Moses face to face
(Ex. 33:11); Then went up Moses, and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu,
and seventy of the elders of Israel: and they saw the God of Israel
(Ex. 24:9, 10). In other places the Word says that it is impossible
to see God: He said, Thou canst not see my face: for there shall
no man see me, and live (Ex. 33:20). The truth is, man has never
looked upon the face of God in His true essence, but has looked upon
His face and spoken mouth to mouth with God when God manifested Himself
in some form other than his true essence. With him will I speak
mouth to mouth
We do know this, that the Spirit (Holy Spirit) can manifest Himself
in a visible form. John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit
descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him (John
1:32). It was at the Lord Jesus baptism that John saw the form,
but not the Spirit; yet the Spirit was manifested.
God has manifested Himself in many forms; among them are the following:
a. In Creature Forms. By this we do not mean that the LORD appeared
in the form of animals, but rather in the form of human beings. Genesis
3:8 and 12:7 illustrate this fully: They heard the voice of the
LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and
his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the
trees of the garden (Gen. 3:8); The LORD appeared unto Abram,
and said, Unto thy seed will I give this land: and there builded he
an altar unto the LORD, who appeared unto him (Gen. 12:7). See
also Genesis 16:7, 10, 13; Exodus 24:9-11; Genesis 18:1-16; Judges 13:22,
23; Genesis 32:24-30.
God also manifested Himself as the Angel of the LORD The
angel of the LORD encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth
them (Ps. 34:7); The angel of the LORD said unto her, Behold,
thou art with child, and shalt bear a son, and shall call his name Ishmael;
because the LORD hath heard thy affliction (Gen. 16:11). It is
agreed among most Bible scholars that the Angel of the LORD is no other
than the Lord Jesus Himself.
b. In Material Forms. Man could not see God; therefore, God manifested
Himself in forms from which He spoke to and led him. One such form was
the Burning Bush: When the LORD saw that he turned aside to see,
God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said, Moses, Moses.
And he said, Here am I (Ex. 3:4); Another form was the Pillar
of a Cloud and a Pillar of Fire: The LORD went before them by
day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them the way; and by night in a
pillar of fire, to give them light; to go by day and night (Ex.
c. In The Person of Christ Jesus. Again we state that we are rejoicing
that God does not choose today to reveal Himself other than in His Son,
Jesus Christ! God does not choose to manifest Himself in a vapor, but
rather in human form: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word
was with God, and the Word was God. . . . And the Word was made flesh,
and dwelt among us (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only
begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth (John 1:1, 14).
See also I Timothy 3:16; Hebrews 1:3.
C. Personality of God.
God is a Person, One possessing Self-consciousness, Self-determination,
People have many vague ideas of God as a force, a power, an influence.
But it is impossible to have fellowship with a force or an influence.
The Words of our Lord as He was in the Garden suggest fellowship with
God: Now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world,
that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves (John 17:13).
See also Exodus 3:14; I Corinthians 2:11.
Never confuse personality with visibility. Substance has nothing to
do with personality. The personality of God can be seen:
1. In Names. God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said,
Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto
you (Ex. 3:14). The words I AM THAT I AM suggest personality.
2. In Contrasts. By this we mean that the Scriptures contrast the only
wise God with the gods of the pagans: Ye turned to God from idols
to serve the living and true God (I Thess. 1:9). See also Jeremiah
10:16; Acts 14:15.
3. In Attributes. That which is characteristic of God is called an attribute.
That which He does, denotes personality, such as:
a. God Grieves. Only a person can grieve: It repented the LORD
that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart
b. God Repents. In the above Scripture (Gen. 6:6) we note that God repents.
I Samuel 15:29 says: The Strength of Israel will not lie nor repent:
for he is not a man, that he should repent. Here one portion of
the Scriptures states that God repents, another declares that He does
not repent. What is the answer? When man repents, he repents of some
moral deed; when God repents, He repents of some judicial act. Gods
attitude toward sin never changes. Take the case of Jonah and Nineveh.
Nineveh repented; it changed its mind; it changed its character. God,
however, did not change His mind; He did not change His attitude toward
sin. But inasmuch as Nineveh had repented, there was no need of judgment
against sin. Its sin had been confessed and forgiven.
c. God Loves. God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten
Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting
life (John 3:16). As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten:
be zealous therefore, and repent (Rev. 3:19). Only a personality
d. God Hates. These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven
are an abomination unto him (Prov. 6:16).
e. God Hears. He that planted the ear, shall he not hear? he that
formed the eye, shall he not see? He that chastiseth the heathen, shall
not he correct? he that teacheth man knowledge, shall not he know
(Ps. 94:9, 10)?
4. In Acts.
a. God Creates. In the beginning God created the heaven and the
earth (Gen. 1:1). See also Isaiah 45:18.
b. God Provides. These wait all upon thee; that thou mayest give
them their meat in due season. That thou givest them they gather: thou
openest thine hand, they are filled with good. Thou hidest thy face,
they are troubled: thou takest away their breath, they die, and return
to their dust. Thou sendest forth thy spirit, they are created: and
thou renewest the face of the earth (Ps. 104:27-30). The material
needs of this entire world are met and supplied by God.
c. God Promotes. Some people seemingly are pushed ahead of others. The
world has a name for this luck. But the correct answer is the
LORD! Kings receive their power from Him; pastors receive their charges
from Him; husbands receive their wives from Him. All promotions are
from the Lord. Promotion cometh neither from the east nor from
the west, nor from the south. But God is the judge: he putteth down
one, and setteth up another (Ps. 75:6, 7).
d. God Cares. God has a heart; only a person has a heart. God has concern:
Humble yourselves . . . casting all your care upon him; for he
careth for you (I Peter 5:6, 7).
D. The Trinity of God.
1. Trinity in Personality. By this, of course, we mean that God is Three
in One. There are some errors concerning the Trinity; some have been
proposed ignorantly, and others deliberately.
We know that the Bible is the Word of God, if for no other reason than
that we have the Trinity in it. If man had written the Bible, he would
have left the Trinity out of it; for the Trinity is too hard to understand
the mind of man cannot comprehend it. The only thing that the
Child of God can do is to accept it by faith and stand upon what God
says about it. Just because we cannot seem to understand all about it
is no sign that it is not true.
There is one error which proposes that there are three Individuals
in the Godhead. But remember, God is not a Triad.
Another error is that the Trinity is just one Person, manifesting Himself
in three. That is. there are three essences in one Person, Jesus Christ.
The Father and the Holy Spirit are only manifestations.
Still another, and damnable, denies the Trinity altogether, and consequently
makes the Son and Holy Spirit creatures of God, those who came into
existence after God. In other words, they who hold to this erroneous
theory declare that there was a time when the Son was not; that there
was a time when the Son of God never existed. They use this sort of
reasoning: A son cannot be as old as his father a father
always has to exist before his son in order to beget him; God is the
Father of the Son of God; therefore, the Father had to exist before
the Son in order to beget Him. To this we reply: If a person
should declare that he is a father, and has been one for ten years,
then we know that he has had a child for ten years. A man cannot he
a father without having a child. Yes, a man who has been a father for
ten years has had a child for ten years. Even so in the Godhead
if God is the Eternal Father, then He must have had an Eternal Son!
The doctrine of the Trinity is a doctrine of pure revelation from God.
And remember, we worship not three Gods, but One God: the Father,
Son and Holy Ghost.
It is practically impossible to give examples of the Trinity. Some have
offered the three-leaved clover as an example; others have suggested
water: in its natural state, liquid; when heated, vapor; when frozen,
solid. Still, this is not clear. For God is Three in One! Therefore,
we propose that the best illustration is man himself: body, soul and
spirit. He is not three persons, but a three-in-one person. And there
are three things which pertain to each separately: food to the body,
music to the soul, and worship to the spirit yet all three of
these things appeal to the one man.
Rays from the sun may be used as a further type. When the sunshine breaks
upon the earth it is composed of three elements: heat rays, which can
be felt but not seen; light rays, which can be seen, but not felt; chemical
rays, which cannot be seen, nor felt, but do have effects. All together
make sunshine. We cannot understand light three rays and yet
one light. Without one of these elements there would be no light; without
one part of man, man would cease to be; and without one Person of the
Godhead, God would not be God!
a. Old Testament Names
(1) Plural Nouns In the beginning [Elohim] created the heaven
and earth (Gen. 1:1). Elohim is the plural noun, meaning three
or more. This, of course, suggests the Trinity in creation. See also
Genesis 3:5; Exodus 20:3; Deuteronomy 13:2, 3. Many times Elohim is
translated (in English) in the singular and the plural.
(2) Plural Pronouns. The LORD God said, Behold, the man is become
as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his
hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever
(Gen. 3:22). See also Genesis 1:26; Isaiah 6:8. This is God speaking
to God thus the Trinity.
(3) Scriptural Statements. The Scriptures state that God anointed
God, and how could this be if God be not a Trinity? Thy throne,
O God, is for ever and ever: the sceptre of thy kingdom is a right sceptre.
Thou lovest righteousness, and hatest wickedness: therefore God, thy
God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows
(Ps. 45:6,7). See also Hebrews 1:8-12; Psalm 110:1.
(4) Scriptural Designations. That is, in Genesis 1:1 God declares that
He created the heavens and the earth, and in verse 2, the Holy Spirit,
the Third Person of the Trinity, is singled out: The Spirit of
God moved upon the face of the waters. (See also Job 24:13). And
elements of personality are accounted for by reference to the Holy Spirit:
There shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch
shall grow out of his roots: and the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon
him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and
might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD (Is. 11:1,
The Son, the Second Person of the Trinity is singled out also: I
will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son;
this day have I begotten thee. . . . Kiss the Son, lest he be angry,
and ye perish from the way
(Ps. 2:7, 12a). The Angel of
the LORD of the Old Testament is no other than Jesus Christ Himself,
and in the following portion of Scriptures He is declared as being separate
from God the Father and Holy Spirit: The angel of the LORD found
her by a fountain of water . . . in the way to Shur (Gen. 16:7).
The following Scriptures plainly reveal the Trinity of the Godhead:
Genesis 18:1,2,33; Isaiah 48:16; 63:8-10.
(5) Triple Expressions. Whenever the Scriptures express praise or
benediction of the Godhead, a triple exclamation is declared which points
to the fact that as God is the Three-In-One God these expressions must
also be three: The Lord bless thee, and keep thee: the Lord make
his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: the Lord lift up
his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace (Num. 6:24-26).
And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him; and
they were full of eyes within: and they rest not day and night, saying,
Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come
b. New Testament Disclosures.
(1) Baptism of Christ. The baptism of Christ is one of the best illustrations
which prove the Trinity: Jesus, when he was baptized, went up
straightway out of the water: and lo, the heavens were opened unto him,
and he saw the Spirit descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:
and lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom
I am well pleased (Matt. 3:16, 17). Here there is presented the
Father in heaven, the Son in the water, and the Holy Spirit descending
as a dove.
(2) Baptismal Formula. The Church of God in Christ Jesus has always
used that formula laid down by its Founder Himself, Jesus Christ: Go
ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the
Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost
20). Note that the Scriptures do not say, in the names of;
but, in the name of. One in Three; one name, but three Persons:
Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
(3) Apostolic Benediction. The Church has used this benediction (which
was first used by the Apostle Paul by inspiration of the Holy Spirit)
for the last nineteen hundred years: The grace of the Lord Jesus
Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be
with you all. Amen (II Cor. 13:14).
(4) Other Scripture. The following verse plainly reveals the fact
of the Trinity: The Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the
Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring
all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you
2. Unity of Being: Undivided and Invisible. There is one God; He is
the one and only God: Thou art great, O LORD God: for there is
none like thee, neither is there any God beside thee, according to all
that we have heard with our ears (II Sam. 7:22); Who hath
wrought and done it, calling the generations from the beginning? I the
LORD, the first, and with the last; I am he (Is. 41:4). See also
Isaiah 43:10, 11; 44:6; Deuteronomy 6:4.
God Elohim is a compound unity; that is, the noun, God
(which is plural), is used always with a singular verb: In the
beginning God [plural] created [singular] the heaven and the earth
(Gen. 1:1); The LORD [singular] God [plural] of gods, the LORD
[singular] God [plural] of gods, he knoweth, and Israel he shall know;
if it be in rebellion, or if in transgression against the LORD [singular],
(save us not this day,)
(Josh. 22:22). See also Genesis
1:5, 8, 13; 33:20.
3. A Scriptural Summary.
a. Three Are Recognized as God.
(1) The Father is Recognized as God. To all that be in Rome, beloved
of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father,
and the Lord Jesus Christ (Rom. 1:7). See also John 6:27; I Peter
(2) The Son is Recognized as God. Unto the Son he saith, Thy
Throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the
sceptre of thy kingdom (Heb. 1:8); We should live soberly,
righteously, and godly . . . looking for that blessed hope, and the
glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ
(Titus 2:12, 13).
(3) The Holy Spirit is Recognized as God. Peter said, Ananias,
why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep
back part of the price of the land? Whiles it remained, was it not thine
own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own power? why hast
thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men,
but unto God (Acts 5:3, 4).
b. Three Are Described as Distinct Persons.
(1) Father and Son Are Persons Distinct From Each Other.
(a) Christ Distinguishes the Father From Himself. As the Father
hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself;
and hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is
the Son of man (John 5:26, 27). See also John 5:32.
(b) Father arid Son are Distinguished as the Begetter and the Begotten.
See John 3:16.
(c) Father and Son are Distinguished as the Sender and the Sent. When
the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a
woman, made under the law (Gal. 4:4). See also John 10:36.
(2) Father and Son Are Persons Distinguished from the Holy Spirit.
(a) The Son Distinguishes the Holy Spirit From Himself and the Father.
I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter,
that he may abide with you for ever; even the Spirit of truth; whom
the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth
him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you
(John 14:16, 17).
(b) The Spirit Proceeds From the Father. When the Comforter is
come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of
truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me
(c) The Spirit Is Sent by the Father and the Son. The Comforter,
which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall
teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever
I have said unto von (John 14:26); When the Comforter is
come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of
truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me
c. These Three Persons Are Equal.
(1) The Father is not God as such, for God is Father, Son and Holy Ghost
(2) The Son is not God as such, for God is Father, Son and Holy Ghost
(3) The Holy Spirit is not God as such, for God is Father, Son and Holy
Ghost (Holy Spirit).
E. The Self-existence of God.
Existence of God is within Himself. We are dependent upon Him; He is
not dependent upon anything. Something caused us to be; nothing caused
Him to be; He always was; God does not exist because He brought Himself
into existence. God exists because it is his nature to be.
Our lives come from an external source; there was a time when we began.
I have greater witness than that of John: for the works which
the Father hath given me to finish, the same works that I do, bear witness
of me, that the Father hath sent me (John 5:36). We cannot say
F. The Infinity of God.
Divine nature has no limit or bound. Great is our Lord, and of
great power: his understanding is infinite (Ps. 147:5); Canst
thou by searching find out God? canst thou find out the Almighty unto
perfection? It is as high as heaven; what canst thou do? deeper than
hell; what canst thou know? The measure thereof is longer than the earth,
and broader than the sea (Job 11:7-9); Will God indeed dwell
on the earth? behold, the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain
thee; how much less this house that I have builded? (I Kings 8:27);
O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of
God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!
(Rom. 11:33). See also Isaiah 66:1; Psalm 113:5, 6.
The world is a bud from His bower of beauty
The sun is a spark from the light of His wisdom
The sky is a bubble on the sea of His power.
IV. THE ATTRIBUTES OF GOD
The attributes of God are the essential qualities of a perfect Being
the property of God.
A. The Omnipotence of God.
This means that God is all-powerful, all-mighty: I heard as it
were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters,
and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord
God omnipotent reigneth (Rev. 19:6); Jesus beheld them,
and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things
are possible (Matt. 19:26); Is anything too hard for the
LORD? (Gen. 18:14a).
There is only one thing which can limit God, and that is His own holy
will. Some foolish person may propose II Timothy 2:13: If we believe
not, yet he abideth faithful: he cannot deny himself. This person
says, Here is something God cannot do. But this is not a
question of what God can do, but what God will do.
1. God Has Power Over Nature. By the word of the LORD were the
heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth. He
gathereth the waters of the sea together as an heap: he layeth up the
depth in storehouses. Let all the earth fear the LORD: let all the inhabitants
of the world stand in awe of him. For he spake, and it was done; he
commanded, and it stood fast (Ps. 33:6-9); Thus saith the
LORD of hosts; Yet once, it is a little while, and I will shake the
heavens, and the earth, and the sea, and the dry land (Hag. 2:6).
See also Genesis 1:1-3; Nahum 1:3-6. Man has to have tools to make things
God only has to speak, and it is done.
2. God Has Power Over Men. There is one lawgiver, who is able
to save and to destroy: who art thou that judgest another? Go to now,
ye that say, To day or to morrow we will go into such a city, and continue
there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain: whereas ye know not what
shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour,
that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away. For what
ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that
(Jas. 4:12-15). See also Exodus 4:11.
3. God Has Power Over Angels. All the inhabitants of the earth
are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army
of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay
his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou? (Dan. 4:35).
4. God Has Power Over Satan. In Job 1:12; 2:6 we notice that Satan is
subjected to God; The LORD said unto Satan, Behold, all that he
hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand. So
Satan went forth from the presence of the LORD. . . . And the LORD said
unto Satan, Behold, he is in thine hand; but save his life. And
we know of the end of Satan from the following Scriptures: The
God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly
(Rom. 16:20a); He laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which
is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years...And the devil
that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where
the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and
night for ever and ever (Rev. 20:2, 10). See also Luke 22:31,
5. God Has Power Over Death. Paul prays that the Ephesians may know
what is the exceeding greatness of his power to usward who believe,
according to the working of his mighty power, which he wrought in Christ
when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand
in the heavenly places, far above all principality, and power, and might,
and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world,
but also in that which is to come (Eph. 1:19-21). Ultimately,
death shall be destroyed: Death and hell [hades] were cast into
the lake of fire. This is the second death (Rev. 20:14).
B. The Omniscience of God.
Omniscience means all knowing. God is the All-Knowing
God He knows everything! For if our heart condemn
us, God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things (I John
1. Includes All Nature. God, the Creator, knows everything concerning
a. Of His Inanimate Creatures. He telleth the number of the stars;
he calleth them all by their names (Ps. 147:4); Hast thou
not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the LORD,
the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary?
there is no searching of his understanding (Is. 40:28).
b. Of His Brute Creatures. Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing?
and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father
c. Of His Human Creatures. God has full knowledge of man: Be not
ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye
have need of, before ye ask him (Matt. 6:8). He knows mans
need; he has knowledge of the need of man. He knows the very thoughts
of man: Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest
my thought afar off (Ps. 139:2). The LORD knoweth the thoughts
of man, that they are vanity (Ps. 94:11). See also I Chronicles
28:9 and Hebrews 4:13. God knows the heart of man: Hear thou in
heaven thy dwelling place, and forgive, and do, and give to every man
according to his ways, whose heart thou knowest; (for thou, even thou
only, knowest the hearts of all the children of men;) (I Kings
8:39). See also Psalm 44:21 and Acts 1:24. God knows the experiences
we have gone through: The LORD said, I have surely seen the affliction
of my people which are in Egypt, and have heard their cry by reason
of their taskmasters; for I know their sorrows (Ex. 3:7). How
absurd for man to try to deceive God!
2. Covers All Time. Known unto God are all his works from the
beginning of the world (Acts 15:18). And this covers the past,
the present and the future. The past can God see, for He has given to
us those things which have happened millenniums ago (Book of Genesis);
the Present is an open book to Him: Neither is there any creature
that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened
unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do (Heb. 4:13); and
the future is known as the past and present is known. He knows the end
from the beginning: Who verily was foreordained before the foundation
of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you (I
Peter 1:20). I Kings 13:2 is also a marvelous illustration of God knowing
the future: a baby was named three hundred years before it was born,
its name given, from what family it was to come and the things it was
to do in later life: And he cried against the altar in the word
of the LORD, and said, O altar, altar, thus saith the LORD: Behold,
a child shall be born unto the house of David, Josiah by name; and upon
thee shall he offer the priests of the high places that burn incense
upon thee, and mens bones shall be burnt upon thee. See
also Isaiah 44:28; Jeremiah 1:5; Galatians 1:15. 16; Exodus 3:19; Daniel
With God knowing the future, we must put ourselves in His hands.
3. Includes All Possibilities. Only God knows what would have happened
if something had happened which did not happen. Thou, Capernaum,
which art exalted unto heaven, shalt be brought down to hell: for if
the mighty works, which have been done in thee, had been done in Sodom,
it would have remained until this day (Matt. 11:23). See also
I Samuel 23:12; Isaiah 48:18.
C. The Omni-sapience of God.
By this we mean the All-Wisdom of God; that is, God has
all wisdom. There is a vast difference in wisdom and knowledge. Knowledge
is what one knows; wisdom is the perfect display of that knowledge.
Wisdom includes discernment and judgment.
1. Choice of The Highest End. All things are chosen which will bring
about the highest end for Gods glory.
2. Best Way of Securing That End. Here wisdom asserts itself, not only
choosing that which will bring about the highest end, but devising the
best ways of securing that end. O the depth of the riches both
of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments,
and his ways past finding out (Rom. 11:33). See also Romans 16:27;
I Corinthians 2:7; Ephesians 1:8; 3:10; I Timothy 1:17.
D. The Omnipresence of God.
There are many vague ideas concerning the omnipresence of God. Omnipresent
simply means everywhere present. God is everywhere present. God is everywhere,
but He is not in everything. The belief that He is in everything is
Pantheism. If God were in everything, then all man would have to do
would be to bow down to a stone, a tree, a desk, a table, or any object,
and he would be worshiping God. God is not in everything, but He is
everywhere! He is everywhere present. The best illustration of this
is of a teacher before his class. The teacher is omnipresent to every
student in that classroom; but he is not omnipresent to those on the
outside, nor to those in the basement, nor even to those who are in
the next room. Why? Because the walls, floors and space are barriers
between him and those in other parts of the building. But God transcends
all barriers space, materials, all things.
We believe, however, that there is a certain place where He manifests
Himself, where He is located and from that locality He is present
to everything of the universe. Hearken thou to the supplication
of thy servant, and of thy people Israel, when they shall pray toward
this place: and hear thou in heaven thy dwelling place: and when thou
hearest, forgive (I Kings 8:30). See also Jeremiah 23:24; Ephesians
1:20; Revelation 21:2.
While Gods dwelling place is in heaven, yet we do know that He
has manifested Himself in other places: on earth, as when He dwelt in
the burning bush (Ex. 3:4): When the LORD saw that he turned aside
to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said,
Moses, Moses. And he said, Here am I; and in the flesh, in the
incarnation of Jesus Christ: Let this mind be in you, which was
also in Christ Jesus: who, being in the form of God, thought it not
robbery to be equal with God: but made himself of no reputation, and
took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of
men: and being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became
obedient unto death, even the death of the cross (Phil. 2:5-8).
The Holy Spirit is everywhere. He is in believers: I will pray
the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide
with you for ever; even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive,
because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for
he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you (John 14:16, 17). He
is with the unbelievers: Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It
is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter
will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. And
when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness,
and of judgment (John 16:7, 8).
God is with us no matter where we are; He is omnipresent; He is everywhere
E. The Eternity of God.
This is one thing which has never been grasped by the human mind: God
is without beginning and without ending. He is the Eternal Now. He is
the only One who is. There is no past, and there is no future in eternity.
God is eternal; therefore, there is no past nor future with God. I
said, O my God, take me not away in the midst of my days: thy years
are throughout all generations. Of old hast thou laid the foundation
of the earth: and the heavens are the work of thy hands. They shall
perish, but thou shalt endure: yea, all of them shall wax old like a
garment; as a vesture shalt thou change them, and they shall be changed.
But thou art the same, and thy years shall have no end (Ps. 102:24-27).
See also Psalm 90:4.
Some one may ask, What is the difference between Genesis 1:1 and
John 1:1? Genesis 1:1 says: In the beginning God created
the heaven and the earth. John 1:1 says: In the beginning
was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
Are both beginnings the same? If so, then the Word, Jesus
Christ, had a beginning! Both passages start at the same point
the beginning; Genesis 1:1 begins with the beginning and looks forward
into eternity; while John 1:1 begins with the beginning and looks backward
into eternity. Therefore, the Word, the Lord Jesus Christ, had no beginning.
F. The Immutability of God.
In other words, this means the unchangeableness of God.
His Being, attitude and acts are without change; I am the LORD,
I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed (Mal.
3:6); Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and
cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness,
neither shadow of turning (Jas. 1:17); God, willing more
abundantly to show unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his
counsel, confirmed it by an oath (Heb. 6:17).
For a discussion of the repentance of God see Chapter I, III, C, 3,
G. The Love of God.
1. Its Citation. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is
love. . . . And we have known and believed the love that God hath to
us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God
in him (I John 4:8-16).
This is the one definition of God. There are many adjectives defining
God, but a noun needs a noun. The love of God comes from revelation.
It does not come by ones own knowledge. It cannot be seen in nature.
Only from Gods Word comes that knowledge that God is love. There
are those who deny the inspiration of the Scriptures, but who still
say that God is love. If the Scriptures are not the Word of God, how
do we know that God is love? You can search the world over and never
find a God is love among the heathen. They have their gods
and idols, but a God that is God is love is unknown to them.
The Bible is the Word of God it, and it only, tells us that God
2. Its Objects. If God is love, then that love must be directed to
someone. And it is, for we learn from the Scriptures that the objects
of His love are:
a. His Son. God loves His Son more than man could ever love his own
offspring. Lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved
Son, in whom I am well pleased (Matt. 3:17). See also Matthew
17:5. Gods love is a perfect love and transcends all bounds: Father,
I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am;
that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst
me before the foundation of the world (John 17:24).
b. Believers. All who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ are the objects
of Gods divine love. He manifests that love day by day. The
Father himself loveth you, because ye have loved me, and have believed
that I came out from God (John 16:27). I in them, and thou
in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may
know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved
me (John 17:23).
c. Israel. Be careful how you speak of the lowly Jew. He
is the object of Gods love, the same as we Christians: The
LORD hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with
an everlasting love; therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee
d. Sinners. God never changes concerning His attitude toward sin. God
hates sin, but loves the sinner! God, who is rich in mercy, for
his great love wherewith he loved us, even when we were dead in sins,
hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved; )
(Eph. 2:4, 5). When we were yet without strength, in due time
Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one
die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But
God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners,
Christ died for us (Rom. 5:6-8).
3. Its Manifestations.
a. In the Gift of His Son for Sinful Man. In this was manifested
the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son
into the world, that we might live through him (I John 4:9). See
also John 3:16; Romans 5:6-8.
Man cannot look upon Calvary and say, God doesnt love me.
One dear man told of the time when his own son was in the pangs of death.
The hardest thing he ever had to do was to say, Thy will be done.
If thou wantest my son, thou canst have him. Oh, to give up an
only son! But mankind gives up its sons to God, who takes care of them
better than man ever could. But God gave His Only Son to sin
to pay for sin, to pay for the sins of sinners! Yes, we may see our
children in the throes of death, but God saw His Son suffer as no man
ever did. The dearest child on earth is only a stranger compared with
the love of God toward His Son. God points toward Calvary and says,
See my Son! See Him mocked, smitten and bruised? God saw
Him. God saw sinners as they crucified His Son. God could have wiped
them off the face of the earth, but He did not. The nails that pierced
His Son pierced the heart of the Father. We can never understand it.
For God so loved the world, that He gave... The Father gave
him up to the hands of justice, to pay for our sins.
Many a murderer has had to pay with his life for his crime. Jesus was
delivered up to pay for our crimes of sin.
b. In Giving Life and Position In Christ. To believers only is given
that sacred position in Christ; there is where we are
saved, and uncondemned. Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and
it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall
appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is (I
John 3:2): Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together
with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) and hath raised us up together,
and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus (Eph.
c. In Granting That We Should Be Called the Children of God. Behold,
what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should
be called children of God; and such we are. For this cause the world
knoweth us not, because it knew him not (I John 3:1, R. V.).
d. In Chastening of His Loved Ones. Whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth,
and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening,
God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father
chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers,
then are ye bastards, and not sons. Furthermore we have had fathers
of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we
not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?
For they verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure;
but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness. Now
no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless
afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them
which are exercised thereby (Heb. 12: 6-11). Remember, the chastening
of the Lord is for our benefit for our profit. We need chastisement;
it is a must in the life of the Christian; and we receive it from our
Father in Heaven.
e. In Remembering His Children in All Circumstances of Life. The question
is asked and answered in the Word concerning the care of parents. Is
there a love greater than mother love? Listen to what God says: Can
a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion
on the son of her womb? Is it possible that a mother could ever
leave her child? The answer is, Yea, they may forget. In
our own lifetime we have witnessed the desertion of children by their
parents. It is a shame that the United States and the separate States
have to have laws which compel parents to take care of their children.
However, this is the nature of the flesh; this is the Adamic nature,
the sinful nature, that parents desert their offspring. You may know
someone who has. You, yourself, may have been deserted by some one.
But listen to the rest of Gods Word: Yet will I not forget
thee (Is. 49:15). There is One who will never desert His children!
f. In Rejoicing Over the Return of the Prodigal Son. This great story
is found in Luke 15:11-24. It is the story of a Son, not a sinner. A
sinner is not a son. Only a son is a son, and you cannot un-son a son.
A son is born a son forever. But here was a son who sank so low that
the testimony he might have had was lost. Remember, he was still a son,
and as much so while feeding swine as he was in his Fathers house.
Relationship was still there, but fellowship was broken. You can lose
fellowship, but you cannot lose sonship. He made up his mind what he
would say to his father upon his return, but he did not get the chance.
He did say, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and
am no more worthy to be called thy son; but before he could add,
Make me as one of thy hired servants, the Father, holding
his son in his arms, cried to the servants, Bring forth the best
robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his
feet: and bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat,
and be merry: for this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost,
and is found (Luke 15:21-24).
Let the prodigal know that if he has been once born from above he is
still Gods child. Only let him resolve to arise and go
to his Father. The Father stands with open arms ready to plant His kiss
upon the penitent lips of His wayward child. Arise and go!
4. The Forms of Gods Love.
a. In the Goodness of God.
(1) As Manifested in Creation. God saw . . . that it was good.
This is characteristic of the first chapter of Genesis. God is good,
and all things that He creates and makes are for the good of man.
(2) As Manifested In His Care of Brute Creation. The eyes of all
wait upon thee; and thou givest them their meat in due season. Thou
openest thine hand, and satisfiest the desire of every living thing
(Ps. 145:15, 16).
(3) As Manifested In the Variety of Pleasure for His Creatures. Why
all the beauty of nature, if not to be enjoyed by the eye of man?
(4) As Manifested in the Gift of His Son. This proves the goodness of
God that God is good.
(5) As Manifested In Allowing Sinners to Repent. Despisest thou
the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing
that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance? (Rom. 2:4).
b. In the Loving-kindness of God. He that spared not his own Son,
but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely
give us all things? (Rom. 8:32). Since God has given us the Greatest
Gift His Son we can be assured that we shall be given
the wrappings with it. The Son is the Gift, and the wrappings
are things of His supply which make our souls happy.
c. In the Long-suffering of God. The Lord is not slack concerning
his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward,
not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance
(II Peter 3:9). The LORD passed by before him, and proclaimed,
The LORD, the LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant
in goodness and truth (Ex. 34:6). See also Numbers 14:18.
How many of us praise the Lord that the Saviour gave us time
in trusting Him for our salvation? Oh, the long-suffering of God which
is manifested toward us, in that we were able to hear the Gospel twice,
when there are millions who have never heard it once!
d. In the Patience of God. Now the God of patience and consolation
grant you to be like-minded one toward another according to Christ Jesus
(Rom. 15:5). Here we note that the patience of God is a divine title,
for He is the God of patience! This is clearly manifested in:
(1) His Dealings With Sinners: Those Before the Flood. Which sometime
were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days
of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight
souls were saved by water (I Peter 3:20). The Lord demonstrated
His patience for at least a hundred years. As long as the ark was a
preparing, the Gospel was preached the people warned. His patience
was exhausted, finally, and the flood carried the unbelievers away.
It will be the same with the coming of the Son of Man at His revelation,
at the end of the Tribulation. All those who are found not to be in
the Ark, Jesus Christ, shall be destroyed.
(2) His Dealings With Israel. And yet for all that [Israels
sin], when they be in the land of their enemies, I will not cast them
away, neither will I abhor them, to destroy them utterly, and to break
my covenant with them: for I am the LORD their God. But I will for their
sakes remember the covenant of their ancestors, whom I brought forth
out of the land of Egypt in the sight of the heathen, that I might be
their God: I am the LORD (Lev. 26:44, 45).
Israel today is Godless, and by this we do not mean that Israel is worse
than any other nation, but simply that it is without God. Jehovah has
sent prophets unto her, but she has stoned them. He sent even His Son,
and Him they crucified. They have been driven unto the uttermost parts
of the earth because of it. Yet, for all of this, God has shown His
patience, and that patience shall be rewarded, for that nation shall
be born anew in a day, and all Israel (those alive at the time of the
Revelation of Jesus Christ) shall be saved!
(3) His Dealings With the World Today. Why does not God strike today?
Why are men allowed to blaspheme the God of heaven and His Son Jesus
Christ? The answer is found in the patience of God.
H. The Mercy of God.
1. As To Its Citation. (For the LORD thy God is a merciful God;)
he will not forsake thee, neither destroy thee, nor forget the covenant
of thy fathers which he sware unto them (Deut. 4:31). The
LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy.
. . . But the mercy of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting upon
them that fear him, and his righteousness unto childrens children
(Ps. 103:8, 17). God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love
wherewith he loved us . . . hath quickened us together with Christ
(Eph. 2: 4-5). See also Psalms 130:7; 145:8; 136:1.
2. As To Its Explanation. There is very little difference in the meaning
of mercy and grace. Mercy, generally speaking, is used in the Old Testament,
and grace in the New Testament. Old Testament mercy and loving-kindness
go together. Someone has said that mercy is negative, and loving-kindness
is positive. Mercy is shown to the disobedient, and loving-kindness
is showered upon the obedient both together mean grace.
3. As To Its Manifestation.
a. In Pardoning the Sinner. Who was before a blasphemer, and a
persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly
in unbelief (I Tim. 1:13).
b. In Removing the Guilt and Penalty. He hath not dealt with us
after our sins; nor rewarded us according to our iniquities. For as
the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them
that fear him. As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed
our transgressions from us (Ps. 103:10-12).
c. In Delivering the Periled. Return, O Lord, deliver my soul:
oh save me for thy mercies sake (Ps. 6:4).
d. In Saving Its Object. Luke 10:33-37 records the parable of the Good
Samaritan. After He has told the parable Jesus asks, Which now
of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among
the thieves? And the answer comes: He that shewed mercy
on him. There can be no doubt but that Jesus Christ is typified
by the good Samaritan, and it is He who saves, through His mercy, the
objects of His concern.
I. The Grace of God.
1. As To Its Citation. According to his mercy he saved us, by
the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; which he
shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; that being justified
by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal
life (Titus 3:5-7). In whom we have redemption through his
blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace
(Eph. 1:7). The God of all grace, who hath called us unto his
eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while,
make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you (I Peter 5:10).
See also I Corinthians 6:1.
2. As To Its Explanation. Grace is said to be undefinable. Grace always
flows down. We might be able to love our equal, or one above our equal,
or sometimes one below our equal, but look at the vast difference between
God and us; there can be no comparison. The grace of God toward us is
3. As to Its Manifestation.
a. In That Grace Justifies. Rather, grace declares the saint to be righteous:
All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; being justified
freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus
(Rom. 3:23, 24).
b. In That Grace Imputes Righteousness. This means, that by the act
of Gods grace, the righteousness of God is put to the account
of the believing sinner, Now to him that worketh is the reward
not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but
believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for
righteousness (Rom. 4: 4, 5).
c. In That Grace Imparts a New Nature. By grace are ye saved through
faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works,
lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ
Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should
walk in them (Eph. 2:8-10).
d. In That Grace Saves. Why should God save us? The only answer is grace!
By grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves:
it is the gift of God (Eph. 2:8).
e. In That Grace Instructs. The grace of God that bringeth salvation
hath appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and
worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this
present world (Titus 2: 11, 12).
J. The Faithfulness of God.
Unfaithfulness is the greatest sin of today. This is true in every walk
of life, whether in business, church, or state. But we have a God who
is faithful at all times, under every circumstance. The Word bears out
the faithfulness of God by the following:
1. Citation. Many Scriptures point out the faithfulness of God: Know
therefore that the LORD thy God, he is God, the faithful God, which
keepeth covenant and mercy with them that love him and keep his commandments
to a thousand generations (Deut. 7:9); God is faithful,
by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our
Lord (I Cor. 1:9); There hath no temptation taken you but
such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer
you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation
also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it (I Cor.
10:13). See also Deuteronomy 32:4 (R.V.); I Thessalonians 5:24; II Thessalonians
3:3; I John 1:9.
2. Explanation. The meaning of faithfulness is stay, lean,
prop, support. God is our support; He it is upon whom we can lean; when
we are faltering, He is our Prop at all times!
3. Manifestation. How does God prove faithful?
a. In Keeping His Promise. Let us hold fast the profession of
our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)... For
ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God,
ye might receive the promise. For yet a little while, and he that shall
come will come, and will not tarry (Heb. 10: 23, 36, 37). The
promise of the virgin-born son in Isaiah 7:9 is fulfilled in Luke 1:26-38;
2:7; the promise of God to Abraham in Genesis 15:13, that his seed would
go to Egypt and stay there for four hundred years, is fulfilled in Exodus
12:41. See also these other Scriptures: Deuteronomy 7:9; I Kings 8:23,
b. In Preserving his People. Take Lamentations 3:22, 23 with Jeremiah
51:5 and you can see that once a people becomes Gods people, they
are His forever. That is because God is faithful: It is of the
LORDS mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions
fail not. They are new every morning:
great is thy faithfulness (Lam. 3:22, 23); Israel hath not
been forsaken, nor Judah of his God, of the LORD of hosts; though their
land was filled with sin against the Holy One of Israel (Jer.
51:5). Other Scripture bears out the faithfulness of God in preserving
His people: Let them that suffer according to the will of God
commit the keeping of their souls to him in well doing, as unto a faithful
Creator (I Peter 4:19). See also Psalm 89:20-26; II Timothy 2:13
c. In Chastening His Children. God is faithful in carrying out the spankings
He has promised to His wayward children: I know, O LORD, that
thy judgments are right, and that thou in faithfulness hast afflicted
me (Ps. 119:75). Correction is needed when we disobey our Lord,
and verily we can always count on the faithfulness of God to render
the expression in this respect. Whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth,
and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth (Heb. 12:6).
d. In Forgiving Our Sins. If we confess our sins, he is faithful
and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness
(I John 1:9).
e. In Answering Our Prayers. How do we know that our prayers will be
answered? God commands us to pray to Him without ceasing. How do we
know that it will do any good? We know that God answers our prayers,
because the faithfulness of God guarantees that His ears will always
be opened to the cries of His children: Hear my prayer, O LORD,
give ear to my supplications: in thy faithfulness answer me, and in
thy righteousness (Ps. 143:1).
a. It will preserve us from worry.
b. It will check our murmuring.
c. It will increase confidence in God.
K. The Holiness of God.
While we mention the holiness of God as the last of Gods attributes,
let us never forget that it is not the least at all. Consider first:
1. Natural holiness. This is called the fundamental attribute, and is
one attribute by which God wants His people to remember Him. Some Bible
scholars declare that this is the most important of all of Gods
attributes. We know why they make such a statement. It is because holiness
is named most often in the Scriptures. God is called holy more times
in the Scriptures, and His holiness is mentioned more, than His might.
Holiness is indeed the attribute of attributes. When we
think not of Gods holiness, we think light of sin. We are living
in the day of compromise, when people hold light views.
It is hard to get people to consider their lost condition and the peril
of hell ahead. They think lightly of salvation, because they have a
light view of Gods holiness: Who is like unto thee, O LORD,
among the gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises,
doing wonders? (Ex. 15:11); I am the LORD your God: ye shall
therefore sanctify yourselves, and ye shall be holy; for I am holy:
neither shall defile yourselves with any manner of creeping thing that
creepeth upon the earth. For I am the LORD that bringeth you up out
of the land of Egypt, to be your God: ye shall therefore be holy, for
I am holy (Lev. 11: 44, 45); Above it stood the seraphims:
each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain
he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly. And one cried unto another,
and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is
full of his glory (Is. 6:2, 3); Thus saith the high and
lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the
high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble
spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart
of the contrite ones (Is. 57:15); I am no more in the world,
but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through
thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one,
as we are (John 17:11); Grieve not the holy Spirit of God,
whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption (Eph. 4:30).
See also Leviticus 19:1, 2; Joshua 24:19; Psalms 22:1-3; 99:5,9; I Peter
2. Aspects of holiness. By this we mean the mien of holiness that
of which holiness is composed.
(1) Its Citation. This then is the message which we have heard
of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness
at all (I John 1:5).
(2) Its Explanation. In Him is light. In Him is no darkness ever. Light
is always pure. There is no such thing as dirty light, nor can anyone
make dirty light. God is Light pure, free from defilement. There
are two phases of purity: negative, free from all that defiles; positive,
pure. God in His holiness is pure: free from all that defiles, and pure
b. Righteousness. This is another element of holiness.
(1) Its Citation. He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all
his ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and
right is he (Deut. 32:4). Righteous art thou, O LORD, when
I plead with thee: yet let me talk with thee of thy judgments: Wherefore
doth the way of the wicked prosper? wherefore are all they happy that
deal very treacherously? (Jer. 12:1); O righteous Father,
the world hath not known thee: but I have known thee, and these have
known that thou has sent me (John 17:25).
(2) Its Explanation. The formula for righteousness is found in Ezekiel
18:5, 9: If a man be just, and do that which is lawful and right...
that is, do things right, in a right way, he is just, he shall
surely live, saith the Lord God. God is always right. He possesses
character that makes Him do everything right. Righteousness always requires
that which is right in character. God never asks anything that is not
right. God never commands that which will make us do wrong.
(1) Its Citation. The just LORD is in the midst thereof; he will
not do iniquity: every morning doth he bring his judgment to light,
he faileth not; but the unjust knoweth no shame (Zeph. 3:5). See
also Deuteronomy 32:4.
(2) Its Explanation. The Greek and Hebrew words for justice mean the
same. Righteousness is the legislative demand of God the demand
for holiness. Justice is judicial holiness that judicial act
of God which demands the penalty for those who have not measured up
to the righteous commands of God. Justice, judicial holiness, governs
those who are judged, and that brings about the execution of those who
carry not out Gods laws. Justice is the Executor of those who
wrong Gods holy commands. Mans justice is sometimes wrong,
but Gods justice is always right thus holiness!
d. Truth of God.
(1) Its Citation. Lead me in thy truth, and teach me: for thou
art the God of my salvation; on thee do I wait all the day. . . . All
the paths of the LORD are mercy and truth unto such as keep his covenant
and his testimonies (Ps. 25:5, 10); God is not a man, that
he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he
said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make
it good? (Num. 23:19); In hope of eternal life, which God,
that cannot lie, promised before the world began (Titus 1:2).
See also the following Scriptures: Deuteronomy 32:4; Psalm 31:5; 86:15.
(2) Its Explanation. That which God has revealed to man in His Word
is Eternal Truth. God never contradicts Himself. One portion of His
Word never contradicts another. Are we not glad that the Word of God
has not agreed with all the dead theories of the past? Certainly! Be
not dismayed should the Bible not agree with any modern day theory concerning
creation, man, etc. Man does not know apart from the Word of God. Anything
apart from the revelation of God is mere supposition.
3. Manifestation of Gods holiness.
a. By His Works. Everything that God has created and made is perfect,
holy. God did not create sin. God did not create a sinful nature which
is in the unsaved man. God created man, who, has sinned. Man, by sinning,
has passed on to man that perverted nature, that Adamic nature, or as
we have called it, that sinful nature. Yes, God created
man who was capable of sinning. If God had created man so that man could
not have sinned, then He would have made a machine rather than a being
with a free will. And if God had created man so that man could not sin
and yet was not a machine, man would not only have been like God, but
he would have been God Himself. God does not make God. Man is inferior
to God. God cannot sin; that is His nature. Man would be God if he could
not have sinned.
b. By His Laws. All the laws are right they are truth. There
is not a single untruth in the whole of Gods laws. Thus Gods
laws manifest Gods holiness.
c. By His Hatred of Sin. Do you know one reason why fellow Christians
are tolerant toward the sins of another, or toward the sins of the unbelievers?
It is because they do not hate sin as God hates it. Often we say that
God hates sin, but He doesnt hate the sinner. That is not true.
God does hate the sinner; The foolish shall not stand in thy sight:
thou hatest all workers of iniquity (Ps. 5:5). This may be a revelation
to some of us. God hates the sinner because of his sin, and not because
of himself. God hates the sinner, but He loves him, too, because He
knows that man is capable of holiness, although ruined by sin. Why does
God punish the sinner? Because of the sinners sins! God thus hates
sin, no matter where it may be found, whether in the life of an unregenerated
sinner, or in the life of His own believer! Gods attitude and
conduct toward sin reveal the holiness of God.
d. By His Love of Righteousness. God loves righteousness as much as
He hates sin: Hear thou in heaven, and do, and judge thy servants,
condemning the wicked, to bring his way upon his head; and justifying
the righteous, to give him according to his righteousness (I Kings
8:32); Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore
God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above
thy fellows... For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour
of love, which ye have shewed toward his name, in that ye have ministered
to the saints, and do minister (Heb. 1:9; 6:10).
e. By His Justification of the Believing Sinner. If man had his rights,
he would be in hell; but it is the mercy and grace of God which offers
him the plan of salvation, which if he receives declares the believing
sinner to be righteous: God hath set [Christ Jesus] forth to be
a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness
for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of
God; to declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might
be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus (Rom.
f. By His Care of His Saints, The LORD executeth righteousness
and judgment for all that are oppressed (Ps. 103:6). Many
a time have they afflicted me from my youth, may Israel now say: many
a time have they afflicted me from my youth: yet they have not prevailed
against me. The plowers plowed upon my back: they made long their furrows.
The LORD is righteous: he hath cut asunder the cords of the wicked
(Ps. 129:1-4). See also the following Scriptures: Psalm 98:1-3; 145:15-19;
II Timothy 1:6-9.
g. By His Cross. My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?
(Ps. 22:1). We can catch a glimpse of the Cross by reading the quoted
verse and the remaining verses of Psalm 22. This Psalm is, of course,
prophetical, spoken or written some nine hundred years before Christ
actually died upon the Cross of Calvary. And Christs death is
a perfect manifestation of Gods holiness. Some, no doubt, will
ask how this could be. We know that God hates sin; therefore, when His
Son was made sin for us, who knew no sin, yea, when even
Gods Son became sin, Gods attitude toward sin did not vary.
God hated sin as much as ever, even when He made His Son sin. His Son
did not change His view at all. Jesus, therefore, became hated of the
Father because of sin. Jesus never became a sinner, but He became sin.
And as God hated sin (It pleased the LORD to bruise him
Is. 53: l0a), God forsook His Son, for God will always forsake
sin. Gods holiness did not change.
V. THE FATHERHOOD OF GOD
God is called the Father because of the association with Him. Popularity
of the term Father is due to Christianity. There is no such
thing as God being a Father in heathenism this can be found only
in Christianity. Today there are many fancies concerning the Fatherhood
of God. The teaching of the Fatherhood of God and the Brotherhood of
Man is nothing but Universalism: that which teaches that no one will
ever be sent to hell. The Universalists reason that God will never send
any of His children to hell and that is true: He will not send
any of His children to hell but not all men are the children
of God. The Scripture which the Universalists use to preach that God
is the Father of all mankind is Ephesians 4:6: One God and Father
of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. But
this means all Christians, all believers, not the unbelievers nor the
A. Old Testament Teaching.
Doubtless thou art our father, though Abraham be ignorant of us,
and Israel acknowledge us not: thou, O Lord, art our father, our redeemer;
thy name is from everlasting... Now, O Lord, thou art our father; we
are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand.
(Is. 63:16; 64:8).
God is mentioned in the Old Testament as a Father, but not the Father
of the individual. Rather He is considered to be the Father of the nation
Israel. You cannot find in the Old Testament where God is spoken of
as a Father of a born-again sinner.
B. New Testament Teaching.
The Lord Jesus is the One who introduced God as the Father of the individual.
He is the first to recognize that God is the Father of each separate
Christian. The following Scriptures bear this out: The Word was
made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory
as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth
(John 1:14); Jesus answered them, My Father worketh hitherto,
and I work. Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because
he not only had broken the sabbath, but said also that God was his Father,
making himself equal with God (John 5:17, 18); My Father,
which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck
them out of my Fathers hand. I and my Father are one. Then the
Jews took up stones again to stone him. Jesus answered them, Many good
works have I shewed you from my Father; for which of those works do
ye stone me? The Jews answered him, saying, For a good work we stone
thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest
thyself God (John 10:29-33); They took away the stone from
the place where the dead was laid. And Jesus lifted up his eyes, and
said, Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me (John 11:41).
1. In That God is the Father of Our Lord Jesus Christ. The expression,
as we use it, the Fatherhood of God, does not mean that
God lived for a long time and then begat His Son. God, remember, is
the eternal Father and to be an eternal Father, He must have
an eternal Son. The term son in Scripture does not always
mean a son by generation; it may also mean a son by relationship. Take
the Old Testament Scriptures: Therefore the Lord himself shall
give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and
shall call his name Immanuel (Is. 7:14); and: For unto us
a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be
upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor,
The mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace (Is.
9:6). Notice the child and the son. The child is born; the Son is not
born, but given. Yes, that Babe in Bethlehem was born, but that Life
was the Son who has been forever. The Babe had a beginning; the Son
had no beginning. He has existed always, from eternity, with the Father.
Thus, Christ is the Son, not by generation (by birth), but by relation.
He is related to the Father and the Holy Spirit; all together are related
to each other, and thus compose the Godhead, God could never be God
without all members of the Godhead being present from eternity throughout
In order for God to become flesh, He had to be born as any other man;
thus, He manifested Himself in His Son, who was conceived by the power
of the Holy Spirit: The angel answered and said unto her, The
Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall
overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born
of thee shall be called the Son of God (Luke 1:35); When
the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a
woman, made under the law (Gal. 4:4).
a. And the Father Recognizes Jesus as His Own Son. Lo a voice
from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased
(Matt. 3:17); There came a voice out of the cloud, saying, This is my
beloved Son: hear him (Luke 9:35).
b. And the Son Recognizes God as His Own Father. All things are
delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the
Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to
whomsoever the Son will reveal him (Matt. 11:27); I appoint
unto you a kingdom, as my Father hath appointed unto me (Luke
22:29); These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven,
and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also
may glorify thee (John 17:1).
c. And Men Recognize Jesus as Gods Own Son. Simon Peter
answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God
(Matt. 16:16); I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of
God ....Nathanael answered and saith unto him, Rabbi, thou art the Son
of God; thou art the King of Israel (John 1:34, 49).
d. And Demons Recognize Jesus as Gods Own Son. Behold, they
cried out, saying, What have we to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of
God? art thou come hither to torment us before the time? (Matt.
2. In That God is the Father of Believers On the Lord Jesus Christ.
There is . . . one God and Father of all, who is above all, and
through all, and in you all (Eph. 4:6).
We cannot emphasize too strongly the fact that God is not the Father
of all mankind. He is only the Father of born-again children of God.
All men are the creatures of God, but not all are children of God. Man
is a creature of God by creation; he becomes a child by re-creation:
Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of
God, and of Jesus our Lord . . . whereby are given unto us exceeding
great and precious promises: that by these ye might be par- takers of
the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world
through lust (II Peter 1:2, 4).
There can be no sonship apart from the spiritual re-birth. A child
has, always, the nature of his father. Man, who is born of Adam, has
Adams nature, which is corrupt, which is perverted, which is sinful.
And the father of Adams sinful nature is Satan. Thus, the nature
of our father (Adam) is the same nature as Adams fathers
(Satan); therefore, our nature is the same as Satans. All unregenerated
sinners have Satan as their father: Ye are of your father the
devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from
the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth
in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a
liar, and the father of it (John 8:44). Summing it all up, if
Satan is the father of the unsaved by the natural birth, we must have
a supernatural birth in order for God to be our Father!
God does not have any fellowship with anything which is of Adam, for
Adam is all that is of a sinful condition and nature. God only has to
do with His Son. The world is divided into two divisions; in fact, there
are only two men whom God recognizes: Adam and Christ; thus, sinners
are divided as to their identity with these two men. The unsaved are
identified with Adam; the saved are identified with Christ. All men
are identified by the natural birth in Adam; born-again men are identified
by the supernatural birth in Christ.
The unsaved man can only call God God. The unsaved man cannot
call God Father. Only the child of God can call God Father.
When the Lord Jesus was hanging on the tree, He called out, My
God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? Notice that Christ did
not cry, My Father, my Father. but My God, my God.
Why? Why did He not call God Father? Because He was taking
the sinners place there in death, dying the Just for the
unjust. And as He was taking the sinners place (a sinner can not
call God Father, but only God), He could only
call God God.
Where are we? In Adam or in Christ? As in Adam all die, even so
in Christ shall all be made alive (I Cor. 15:22).