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Who is God? | God's Attributes

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
October 18, 2023 3:00 am

Who is God? | God's Attributes

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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October 18, 2023 3:00 am

In Oklahoma, it’s reportedly illegal to trip a horse. In Arizona, it’s illegal for a donkey to sleep in a bathtub. In Connecticut, a pickle must be able to bounce. Yeah, those laws are reportedly still on the books. Mankind came up with some doozies. So why do we let the culture dictate what’s right and wrong? Today on A NEW BEGINNING, as Pastor Greg Laurie continues his series called “Timeless,” we’ll continue our look at the attributes of our God.

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A New Beginning is the daily half-hour program hosted by Greg Laurie, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Southern California. For over 30 years, Pastor Greg and Harvest Ministries have endeavored to know God and make Him known through media and large-scale evangelism. This podcast is supported by the generosity of our Harvest Partners.

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You're listening to A New Beginning with Greg Laurie, a podcast supported by Harvest Partners. For more ways to deepen and challenge your spiritual walk, enroll in Pastor Greg's free online courses.

Sign up at harvest.org. God determines what is good. Our culture seems to call good bad and call bad good.

Coming up today, Pastor Greg Laurie points to the definitive source of truth. If you want to know what good is, you go to scripture. God will tell you what is good and God will tell you what is bad. And if God tells you something is bad, it's bad. And if He tells you it's good, it's good.

And if He tells you not to do something, He's telling it to you for your own good. In Oklahoma, it's reportedly illegal to trip a horse. In Arizona, it's illegal for a donkey to sleep in a bathtub. In Connecticut, a pickle must be able to bounce.

Those laws are reportedly still on the books. Mankind came up with some doozies. So why do we let the culture dictate what's right and wrong? Today on A New Beginning, as Pastor Greg Laurie continues his series called Timeless, we'll continue our look at the attributes of our God. Who is God? What you believe matters.

What you think matters. So I want to take some time in this series that we're calling Timeless to offer sound theology without apology. Let's begin with the attributes of God. And let's go to Psalm 139 and read a few verses together. Psalm 139.

Now I'm going to be reading from the New Living Translation. The psalmist writes, Lord, you have examined my heart. You know everything about me. You know when I sit down, you know when I stand up. You know my thoughts, even when I'm far away. You see me when I lie.

You see me when I travel and when I rest at home. You know everything I do. You know what I'm going to say even before I say it, Lord. You go before me and you follow me. You place your hand of blessing on my head. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too great for me to understand.

I love that, don't you? So here's point number one if you're taking notes. God is omniscient. God is omniscient, theological word. It means God knows everything. Verse one, Lord, you've examined my heart and know everything about me.

Think about this. God knows everything about you. He knows every thought you think. He knows every place you go. He knows every website you visit. He knows every hope you have inside. He knows your fears. He knows everything.

God knows all things. He's omniscient. And number two, he's omnipresent. Omnipresent.

It's just a word that means he's present everywhere. Look at Psalm 139, verse seven. I can never escape from your spirit. I can never get away from your presence. If I go to heaven, you're there. If I go down to the grave, you're there. Wherever you go, God will be there. But when we put our faith in Christ, we're reassured that Jesus will never leave us or forsake us.

That's great to know. God is omnipresent. God is omniscient. And God is omnipotent. Number three, omnipotent.

This means that he has unlimited power that can never be depleted, drained, or exhausted. And this is why it's so silly when we say, well, I've tried everything. I've exhausted all of my resources. All I can do now is go pray.

What? Oh, you mean pray to the all-knowing, all-powerful, ever-present creator of the universe? I think he can handle your problem. Number four, God is sovereign. We hear that word thrown around. God is sovereign. What does that even mean? It means that God is able to do what he pleases with whomever he chooses whenever he wishes.

Let me say that again. God is able to do what he pleases with whomever he chooses whenever he wishes. So God doesn't have to check in with you or me, make sure we're okay with this. God is sovereign. But that also reminds us that God has a plan. Nothing is ever haphazard or willy-nilly.

It's always part of the bigger plan for your life. Number five, God is truth. God is truth. Jesus said, I am the way, the truth, and the life. This means that God and God alone is the final standard of truth.

God is the final court of arbitration. You are not. Nor are your feelings or your emotions.

Well, I don't know. I see it differently. What do you do when you come to a passage in the Bible you don't agree with? You change your opinion because scripture is truth.

God is true. Well, I don't agree. Who cares? Really, who cares? I guess you care. I don't really care. But it's God who is that source of truth because we'll come up with all these wacky things like, well, my God, my God is loving but he's not wrathful.

Really? Your God is you. No, no, he's my God. You made up your own God.

You can do that if you want to, but that God will not be able to save you on the final day. The only God is the true God found in scripture who describes himself clearly. There is no higher authority than God. So God is omniscient. He's omnipresent. He's omnipotent. He's sovereign.

He's true. Number six, God is holy. God is holy.

And we see this repeatedly in scripture. Isaiah in chapter six says this, I saw the Lord sitting on his throne. He was high.

He was lifted up. His glory filled the temple and the angels cried, holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty. The holiness of God. Habakkuk 1 13 says your eyes are too pure to look on evil.

You cannot tolerate wrong. So we need to understand the holiness of God. We talk a lot about the love of God.

I'm getting to that in just a moment. But I think there may have been a day in the church where the holiness of God was emphasized at the expense of the love of God. But I think in more recent times maybe the love of God has been emphasized at the expense of the holiness of God.

Does that make sense? We see God loves you. God loves everything about you.

God loves you no matter what you've done. Well that's all true, but God wants to change you. There is the holiness of God too. We have to keep all these things in mind when we think about God and not make him some one-dimensional creation that we come up with.

Number seven, God is good. And I think this is really important to be reminded of because I think okay God's all-knowing, fine. God's all-powerful, good. God's present everywhere. God is sovereign.

He can do whatever he wants whenever he wants with whoever he wants. All right. He's holy.

I got it. Ah but God is good. God is good.

Don't miss that because if I miss that they give me kind of a frightening view of the Lord. The word good could be understood to mean as God is the final standard of good. In other words if you want to know what good is you go to scripture. God will tell you what is good. And God will tell you what is bad. And if God tells you something is bad it's bad. And if he tells you it's good it's good. And if he tells you not to do something it's bad. And if he tells you not to do something he's telling it to you for your own good. Because the Bible says no good thing will he withhold from those that walk up rightly. Psalm 106 one says give thanks unto the Lord for he's good. David writes in Psalm 34 eight oh taste and see that the Lord is good.

So God determines what is good. So he's truthful. He's holy.

He's good. But yes he is loving. In fact the Bible even says God is love. God is love. Behold what manner of love the father has given unto us that we should be called the children of God. Greater love is no man than this that he laid down his life for his friends. For God so loved the world he gave his only begotten son. Whoever believes in him should not perish but have everlasting life. His love for us is unchanging. It's consistent. And it's inexhaustible. It's so wonderful.

So listen to this. Let's put the holiness of God and the love of God together and it'll give us a big picture view of our father in heaven. In his holiness he is unapproachable. In his love he approaches us.

Let me say that again. In his holiness he's unapproachable. How can I approach a holy God? A perfect flawless God. I'm sinful.

I fall short. He's unapproachable. But in his love he approaches us. He says you come now to me.

I want a relationship with you. Pastor Greg Laurie will have the second half of his message in just a moment. You know when you've walked in the very land where Jesus himself walked you'll gain a whole new appreciation for the truth of scripture. Hey everybody Greg Laurie here inviting you to the Harvest Ministries Israel tour April 9 to 19 2024. This will be an unforgettable journey through biblical sites and a unique opportunity to grow in your own faith. Listen. Spots are limited. Be sure to sign up as soon as possible at Israel.Harvest.org.

Again it's Israel.Harvest.org. I hope to see you there. Well we're considering the righteous attributes of God the Father today by way of Pastor Greg's message from his new series called Timeless. Well let's see how this applies to our life.

Let's wrap this message up. Because there can be no theology without doxology. How do we apply these truths in our lives? About a God who is omniscient omnipresent omnipotent and sovereign. A God who is true holy good and loving.

Here's point number one. God is truth therefore we as as children must be truthful. God's true so we must be truthful. We're told in Proverbs 12 22 lying lips are an abomination to the Lord.

It's important to tell the truth. But the Bible tells us speak the truth in love. Sometimes people use truth and I'll put that in quotes as a weapon to beat people down.

Like maybe someone is slipping up spiritually or falling short and we berate them with Bible verses and tell them how far short they fall of God. And that may be true in a sense but speak the truth in love. See I share the truth not to destroy you but to restore you.

That's important because the Bible says if you see a brother or a sister overtaken in a fault you are spiritual should restore such a person in the spirit of meekness. So have some humility and speak the truth and love. And if you really do love someone you got to tell them the truth.

It's not always easy to do is it? Proverbs 25 5 says open rebuke is better than secret love. Faithful are the wounds of a friend but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful.

If I love someone I will tell them what is true. Number two God is holy therefore I should be holy. First Peter 1 13 says just as he's called you to be holy be holy in all that you do. For it is written be holy because I'm holy. Since you call on a father who judges each man's work impartially live your lives here as strangers in reverent fear. Now I think that we need to understand what this means because I think we misunderstand holiness. In fact we even use it in a negative way but someone is sort of condescending or at least we think they are. We'll say don't be holier than thou.

Right? Actually we should be holier than thou. I hope I'm holier than thou.

I hope you're holier than me. So what does it mean to be holy? Here's what it doesn't mean. To be holy does not mean that you are arrogant or condescending or constantly virtue signaling. You know why don't you read the Bible as much as I read the Bible? Why aren't you as pious as I am?

Why don't you pray as much as I do? That's not holiness that's arrogance. That's the opposite of holiness. Let me help you understand the word holy. Let's respell it. Instead of spelling it h-o-l-y spell holy w-h-o-l-l-y as in holy committed to something. The Bible tells the story of Caleb and Joshua who both went into the promised land along with 10 other spies.

There were 12 in total. As they returned back they gave a good report to Moses. The two did at least hey let's go in it's awesome. God will give us the land. The other Ted said don't go man we'll die. So only Joshua and Caleb because of their faith made it in to this land flowing with milk and honey.

But it took a long time to get there. So by the time Caleb was ready to go into the promised land he was 85 years old. And I love this old dude because he stands up and he says I'm as strong today as on the day the Lord called me.

85 raises up his bony old old man arm. And then he says give me this mountain. And he went in and conquered all the inhabitants of the area he was given. And then he gave a secret. He says for I have wholly followed the Lord my God. You want to know the secret to spiritual longevity? You want to know the secret to being strong at the beginning the middle and the end of your life? Kale.

No I'm joking. Bacon. Bacon. There was a woman named Pearl Cantrell that made it past 100. They said Pearl what's your secret to living such a long life? And she said bacon. I eat it every day.

But the answer is not bacon and it's not kale. It's wholly following the Lord your God. Every day you get up in the morning you recommit yourself to him. You never rest on your laurels.

You never live in the past. You keep progressing and growing as a follower of Jesus Christ. God is holy and we should be holy.

Thirdly God is omnipresent so I should never feel alone. Maybe I'm talking to somebody right now that's going through a scary time. A storm. A trial.

A valley. We use all kinds of metaphors but they all fit in some way shape or form. But I want you to know whatever you're going through God is with you in the midst of it. Remember Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego? What a great Old Testament story.

And it would take me a while to go back and retell it. But if you don't know it read it in the book of Daniel. But basically they were thrown into this massive fiery furnace to die a certain death. And much of the shock of the king he looks and sees not three men that he threw in but four walking around like it's a Sunday stroll in the park. And then King Nebuchadnezzar says I threw three in and yet I see a fourth and the fourth is like the Son of God.

That's because Jesus was walking with his boys down there in the fire. And he's walking with you and yours as well. God is omnipotent so he can meet whatever your needs are. Do you have some big giant need right now?

Oh I don't know how I'm going to do this. You serve an all-powerful God with unlimited resources. Philippians 4 19 says he will supply all of your needs according to his riches in glory. So call upon him.

But God is sovereign. He's going to do what he wants, when he wants, whenever he wants. He'll do what he pleases with whomever he chooses, whenever he wishes.

They think well I don't know if I like that. Well no but he loves you. He's good and he has a plan. So you're going through something that doesn't make sense. You remind yourself oh but God is sovereign.

And that doesn't mean God is disconnected. It means that God has a very clear plan for your life that is motivated by his goodness and his love for you. And his ultimate plan is to make you more like Jesus. So whatever you're going through just be reminded of the fact that as my friend Randy Alcorn would say, it's father filtered.

Father filtered. In other words he will not allow it unless there's a purpose for it. He's either doing it or he's allowing it in your life for some bigger plan. He has a plan so don't panic.

And let me just loop back to that one thought. Just God is love. God loves you so much. He knows all about you. He knows your flaws. He knows your shortcomings. He knows how far short we all fall. But he loves us. And if you're ever tempted to doubt the love of God take a long look at the cross.

And think about Jesus hanging there. Beaten beyond human recognition. Crown of thorns pressed in on his forehead. Beard ripped from his forehead.

Beard ripped from his face. Dying and bleeding and suffering for you. And he did it for you. I know the Bible says for God so loved the world he gave his only begotten son and that is clearly true. But I love how Paul personalized it when he said he loved me and he gave himself for me.

Just remember that. He loves you. And he gave himself. Gave himself. No one took the life of Jesus from him. He laid it down of his own accord. He gave himself for you.

Why? Because he had to die on the cross so you could have your sin forgiven. So you can approach this holy awesome all-knowing all-powerful ever-present God. He needed to bridge the gap for you so you can have a relationship with God and actually be able to call him your father in heaven. But that all comes through Christ who made a way for you through the cross.

And he's here with us now. And he's standing at the door of your life and he is knocking and he is saying if you hear his voice and open the door he will come in. If you've never asked Jesus Christ to come into your life why don't you do that right here right now. We're going to pray together in closing and I'm going to pray a simple prayer that you could pray if you want Jesus to come into your life to be your Savior and your Lord. If you want a relationship with this wonderful God I've been talking to you about. If you want to know him in a personal way you just pray this prayer with me right now.

Let's all bow our heads and pray. If you want Jesus to come into your life pray this now. Lord Jesus I know that I'm a sinner but I know that you're the Savior who died on the cross for my sin and rose again from the dead. I turn from my sin now and I choose to follow you as your child from this moment forward. I pray this now in Jesus name.

Amen. An important prayer from Pastor Greg Laurie today here on The New Beginning leading many and making a change in their relationship with the Lord and if you've just prayed that prayer and you've meant those words sincerely then we want to congratulate you and welcome you into the family of God and we'd like to send you something to help you begin your walk with the Lord. It's Pastor Greg's New Believers Bible along with some additional resources and we'll send them to you free of charge if you'll call us at 1-800-821-3300.

We can take your call anytime. Again 1-800-821-3300 or write A New Beginning Box 4000 Riverside California 92514 or go online to harvest.org and click know God. Well Pastor Greg we're talking about your film your brand new film called Fame talking about the dangers of pursuing fame and fortune. Let's say one of your grandkids came up to you one day and they said Papa when I grow up I'm going to be a social media influencer and everybody's going to watch my videos I'm going to be rich and you say well I don't think it's bad to want to be an influencer I don't think it's a bad thing to want to be successful in life but I think we need to do it for the right reasons and use the platforms for the best purposes. So there are social media influencers out there there are people that have large followings on social media platforms and they use it for the glory of God and I think that's fantastic because you know people need to hear the gospel and I I'm always looking for ways to build bridges to people and talk about things that are happening in the culture and in the world today and show them what the Bible says and how Christ is ultimately the answer so I don't know if that would be the best thing to pursue is your career having said that whatever you do do it for the glory of God so if you can say Hollywood be thy name over what you're about to pursue as your career path and I think you're good to go that would include being a social media influencer or whatever other field you go after. And but you do talk about the dangers of fame because we see that demonstrated throughout the entertainment industry the stories of those who have really attained what they set out to accomplish and yet it destroyed them those stories are everywhere. Sure consider Amy Winehouse an incredible success very talented musician and yet here's what she said of fame and I quote fame is like terminal cancer I wouldn't wish it on anyone end quote. So how's that for an answer from someone who's been there and done that and bought the t-shirt and maybe even was the t-shirt right so no it isn't the answer Solomon was one of the most successful men who ever lived he had global fame people traveled from across the planet to be with this man of God this man of wisdom but then Solomon walked away from his faith and backslid he wrote about it in the book of Ecclesiastes here's this conclusion it's all empty it's like chasing the wind it's like a bubble that bursts so here's this conclusion at the end of the book of Ecclesiastes fear God and keep his commandments well how about that so here's your choice you can learn these things the easy way or the hard way you don't have to live the life of Solomon or the life of Amy Winehouse or the life of any famous celebrity who flamed out burned out or even took their own life you can learn it from what God says in this word so I've written a book called Fame that's available right now it's a brand new book and I want to make it available to you for your gift of any size that you send to our ministry but I really play it out in this book I illustrate it with all kinds of sources and quotes and stories from people who've been there and experienced it for themselves but then we have a brand new film by the same title Fame so Dave tell them where they can see the film yeah the movie premieres this weekend at our new harvest media platform at harvest.org and also other streaming platforms such as Roku Apple TV Samsung Amazon Fire and Google Play Fame is free to watch so mark your calendar for October 20th through 22nd and of course the book called Fame gives even more insight and examples of how God's plan differs from the world's plan the plan that promises happiness but often delivers sadness and despair we'll be glad to send a copy of the book your way again it's called Fame to thank you for to thank you for partnering with us so Pastor Greg can continue to bring the gospel through radio through books and film and through so many other forms of outreach get in touch with your donation today by calling 1-800-821-3300 call anytime 24 7 1-800-821-3300 or write a new beginning box 4000 riverside california 92514 or go online to harvest.org well next time Pastor Greg moves ahead in his series called timeless as we discover the full biblical answer to the question who is who is Jesus join us here on a new beginning with pastor and Bible teacher Greg Laurie the preceding podcast was made possible by harvest partners helping people everywhere know God learn how to become a harvest partner sign up for daily devotions and find resources to help you grow in your faith at harvest.org
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-10-18 05:20:20 / 2023-10-18 05:30:50 / 11

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