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Who Is God? #1

The Truth Pulpit / Don Green
The Truth Network Radio
January 11, 2023 7:00 am

Who Is God? #1

The Truth Pulpit / Don Green

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Who is God?

There are two starting points to true knowledge. The first, acknowledge that there is a God, and the second is to acknowledge that you are not He. There is a God and you're not Him. The most important questions concerning God, humankind, life, and death all find their answers in scripture, and we're looking at many of them in our current series here on The Truth Pulpit with Don Green, founding pastor of Truth Community Church in Cincinnati, Ohio. Hello, I'm Bill Wright, and today, as Don teaches God's people God's Word, we've titled the series, very simply and appropriately, Key Questions Answered, and Don's here now to preview today's message. Well, today on The Truth Pulpit, we tackle an immense question. Who is God?

There is a definite and a true answer to that question. You know, God is not whoever we think He is. We can't make Him up in our own mind. God is who He has disclosed Himself to be in scripture. Who is God?

The answer is great, and the answer is good. Thanks for joining us today as we begin our study on The Truth Pulpit. And friend, have your Bible handy now as Don teaches God's people God's Word from The Truth Pulpit. God and God alone is the most important person in the universe, and our question today is the question that needs to be answered, and it is our privilege to be able to look at what God has said about Himself and to answer the question on His terms, not on ours. Who is God?

I'm going to give you four points to help you answer that. First of all, who is God? Let's start with this particular point. Point number one, God is an eternal Spirit. God is an eternal Spirit.

He's not like us. The very essence of God is invisible. The very essence of God is spiritual. The divine nature is not made of physical matter that we can see with our eyes. It is something other than us.

It is something different, separate. We must think of God not by looking at ourselves and projecting ourselves on Him. We must look at what the Word of God says and adjust our thinking accordingly. Jesus said in John 4-24 that God is spirit. The very essence, the very nature of God is spiritual, not physical. And Jesus said that a spirit does not have flesh and bones.

Luke 24 verse 39, which He was saying after His resurrection. God is an eternal Spirit. He had no beginning. Of all of the great things about God, that is the one that always stops me personally in my tracks. I can't contemplate a being that had no beginning.

Everything that we see around has had a starting point. God didn't. There was no beginning with Him because He existed always.

There was never a time where God was not. Turn in your Bibles to 1 Timothy. 1 Timothy. We're going to look at a couple of passages here. 1 Timothy chapter 1.

I'll give you a moment to turn there. And as we think about the privilege that is ours to be a Christian, to have our sins forgiven through the shed blood of Jesus Christ, we are quickly led into, if we're following the thinking, the flow of thought of the writers of Scripture, we're quickly led into the eternal character of God as we do. Look at 1 Timothy chapter 1 verse 15. The Apostle Paul said, It is a trustworthy statement deserving full acceptance that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners among whom I am foremost of all. Yet for this reason I found mercy so that in me as the foremost Jesus Christ might demonstrate His perfect patience as an example for those who would believe in Him for eternal life.

Let me stop right there and say this to some of you who need to hear it. I realize that you've been living a life of sin and iniquity and neglecting the character of God in the way that you've structured your life and your thinking. And as we contemplate the character of God, that is going to have a convicting sense on your spirit.

It is going to convict you of guilt, and it should. It is unthinkable that you would live your life in total disregard of the God who is an eternal spirit who had no beginning and will have no end. That is a cosmic crime to rebel against God at such a fundamental level that you don't line your life up underneath His authority and His character.

That's a crime of cosmic proportions. I don't know how you live with yourselves, except that I myself lived that way for quite a long time myself. But as we come to the character of God, it's going to convict you of the guilt of living in rebellion against Him.

Well, here's why I emphasize that. Look back at verse 16. As Paul is talking about the fact that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, he does that as a foundation of hope for you and me.

He says in verse 16 that I, meaning Paul, found mercy so that Christ might demonstrate His perfect patience as an example for those who would believe in Him for eternal life. The gospel goes out to you this morning with the patience and the love and grace of God saying, despite your past rebellion, I am still willing to receive you as a sinner. I am still willing to receive you and give you eternal life to give you the forgiveness of your sins. I did it with Paul.

I'll do it for you too. What a gracious, lovely God this is to do that. Now, here's my point. Those of us that are in Christ that embraced that, that thank God that He came and He saved us as sinners, He gave us eternal life, look where the apostle Paul goes having just given a snapshot of his own testimony. When you as a believer, a redeemed child of God, contemplate the reality of your salvation, contemplate the mercy that Christ has shown on your soul, your thoughts should immediately go to the eternal nature of God and worship Him. That's exactly what Paul does in verse 17. He just said, Christ saved me, now in verse 17 he worships. He says, now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever.

Amen. Your disposition of worship toward God should be driven by the reality of your salvation and by the fact that God is an eternal spirit, immortal, invisible, and that should cause you to bow, to fall on your face as it were, and worship Him and give Him glory. Because He is so different from us. He is so great.

He is so perfect. He is so glorious and majestic that the only right thing for you and me to do is to bow down and worship Him. To not trifle with His greatness, with an indifferent heart, with a life of sin, with neglect of His word. Don't trifle with this great eternal spirit. He is immortal. He is invisible. He is eternal.

He is the only God and He sees us. We must worship Him, this great eternal spirit. Look over at 1 Timothy chapter 6 where Paul goes back to similar themes and see how the inspired apostle worships, see the sober way in which he regards the truth of the gospel and the truth of the word of God and the great character of God. It is so sober.

It is so serious. It is so reverential. Look at 1 Timothy chapter 6 verse 13. Paul says, I charge you in the presence of God who gives life to all things. There's a statement of your utter dependence on the character of God for your next breath.

I charge you in the presence of God who gives life to all things and of Christ Jesus who testified the good confession before Pontius Pilate. That you keep the commandment without stain or reproach until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ. We're under a solemn charge, a holy obligation to honor the word of God, to keep it to the utmost of our ability without stain or reproach until Christ returns. But keeping in mind that our point here is that God is an eternal spirit. Look at what Paul says in verse 15, which he will bring about at the proper time. He who is the blessed and only sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone possesses immortality and dwells in unapproachable light, whom no man has seen or can see, to him be honor and eternal dominion.

Amen. Worship in response to the eternality of God. Worship in response to his invisible nature, his immortal nature, the one who dwells in unapproachable light.

This character of God drives us to reverence and worship. This invisible spirit who is God existed before creation and will have no end. We can think back to the beginning of time and that doesn't go back far enough. We can think into the future and in misty ways contemplate eternity. It's all clear to God.

No beginning, no end, an eternal spirit. Now, just a little bit of insight in terms of what that means for the way that we worship. The invisible nature of God that underlies the second commandment against graven images, about using images in the worship of God.

If you think about it, you can see why that would necessarily be the case. If God is an invisible spirit, then it is impossible for a physical object to accurately represent him. Physical objects, paintings and statues and all of that could never properly communicate to us the nature of God.

It can only pervert and distort who he is. And so those who use images to supposedly aid and abet their worship are only using that which draws them away from the true nature of God. That's why the best of churches are simple in their worship, they're simple in the adornment of where they gather together to worship. It's because there is nothing on earth that can properly picture this eternal spirit. God's an eternal spirit. We worship him in response to that. Now secondly, secondly, I don't know about you, I love the way that the truth about who God is, the truth of his character, takes us out of the realm of this world and puts us in a mental dimension that is completely different than anything that we see around us.

I like that. It testifies to the truth of who God is that as we look at what scripture is that it doesn't lead us back to something that looks like us. Secondly, God is the creator of heaven and earth. God is an eternal spirit, point number one.

Point number two, God is the creator of heaven and earth. Scripture teaches that God made heaven and earth in six 24-hour days. The Bible does not use evolution and millions of years to explain our origins. It simply states in Genesis 1-1 that in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth and then goes through six evenings and mornings the next day, the next day, the next day.

It's a travesty that people who claim in the name of God seek to pervert that and make it something other than what a literal straightforward reading of the text would be. Our origins are not shrouded in mystery in the sense that millions and billions of years would make it. No, our origins are explained quite clearly for us in the first chapter of Genesis which Jesus himself affirmed. You can't deny the first chapter of Genesis without making a direct assault on Christ.

If you're going to do that, you might as well take a dagger and try to stab him because his own veracity underlies the testimony of Genesis 1. God is the creator of heaven and earth. All of life traces its origin to God. Everything that we see follows back and goes back to that common source.

Hebrews 11 verse 3 says, By faith we understand that the worlds were prepared by the word of God so that what is seen was not made out of things which are visible. Think about it. Somehow, an invisible eternal spirit spoke and commanded visible temporal things to come into being. How do we understand that? You know, we don't have that creative power to do anything like that.

If we did, I would speak hamburger and things would change. God speaks and a vast, immeasurable universe comes into being. God speaks and man appears by his creative activity. Now listen, that has implications. That has consequences for you and me. It imposes upon us, and if you wonder why people object to it, here you go. It imposes upon us a duty, an obligation, a responsibility of worship. We must worship the one who created us. His role as creator imposes upon you and upon me a duty of allegiance to him because our very existence derives from his hand. Apart from him, we would be nothing.

We would not exist, and so we must worship him. And another thing that it does in terms of our inner being and the very nature and the attitude with which we carry about life, this is completely humbling. Turn over to the book of Job chapter 38. Job 38, I just want to show you something briefly. You are no doubt familiar with the story of Job. He was a righteous man. Satan accused him. God gave Satan access, and Satan basically destroyed him to within an inch of his life. Job wrestled with that.

Why is this happening to me? He got some bad interaction from some so-called friends. And Job is just pleading for an opportunity to lay his case before God. And we come to Job 38, and God, after allowing a lot of discourse going back and forth, steps in and speaks, and he addresses Job. Look at chapter 38, verse 1. The Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind and said, Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge? Now gird up your loins like a man, and I will ask you, and you instruct me.

Here's what I want you to do, beloved. Here's what I want you to do as we look at this passage. I want you to put yourself in the shoes of Job and let the questions that God is asking become that which addresses your own soul. Because only then is the power of God being an eternal spirit, of God being the maker in the heaven and earth, going to have the proper effect on your heart. God comes to us and says, okay, instruct me. Verse 4. Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth?

Tell me if you have understanding. Who set its measurements since you know? Or who stretched the line on it?

On what were its bases sunk? Or who laid its cornerstone when the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy? How did God do it? Where were you when he did? We weren't there. We couldn't have done it by our own power.

We weren't there. We don't understand how he hangs the world on nothing, how he moves the planets and the solar systems with mathematical precision. He runs an entire universe this way.

He created it this way. And we can't begin to fathom the wisdom and power that lies behind such a majestic act of creative power. Imagine, I mean, God upholding billions of stars. Imagine if he just handed you the key to one planet and said, you uphold this. We'd have no idea what to do with that.

We would be instantly reduced to utter humiliation. We can't govern the bodies of heaven. God does it without effort.

That's power. That's the nature of the Creator. And so this is just extremely humbling. We might get caught up in the little earthly accomplishments that we achieve, different ranks and things that we do, but it's utterly humiliating to compare them to the great majesty of the God of the Bible. And that's the only way that we start to see ourselves properly, to see ourselves humbled before unspeakable, unfathomable greatness in his creative power. Who is God?

He's the Creator of heaven and earth, an eternal Spirit who made everything that we see around us except for sin. And so we worship him. We worship him for his intrinsic greatness. We humble ourselves before him. We understand that we have an obligation of worship, of allegiance, because our life is derivative from him. And so as we start to answer the question, who is God, you quickly see that the better we answer that question, the greater he looks and the smaller we feel.

And that's exactly what should happen. That is exactly what the contemplation of God should do to man. And any contemplation of God that doesn't lead to that is not a true contemplation of him. Now thirdly, as we continue to answer the question, who is God, we're going to answer it this way. Third point, God is great. God is great. And it's hard to find words that haven't been so diluted by usage that actually are fitting to describe our great God with. That's a great... that was a great movie.

That was a great time at the show, at the restaurant, whatever. We've so diluted that word that it's meaningless almost. But when we say God is great, we're not saying it's really good to have him around. We're saying God is great! There is an explosive greatness to the person and character of God that should utterly disarm our thinking. It should shatter our sense of well-being.

It should shatter our view of the world. That the God of the Bible is so astoundingly, amazingly, astonishingly great, God's greatness surpasses our ability to understand. It surpasses our ability to investigate. You can put it this way, the greatness of God dwarfs us.

Psalm 145 verse 3 says, Great is the Lord, and highly to be praised, and His greatness is unsearchable. We quickly get lost in the vast ocean of the majesty and greatness of God. And all we can do really is just take a little thimble and fish out a little bit of that essence here in a message like this.

We get a taste of it truly, but we don't get a taste of it exhaustively. That's Don Green, founding pastor of Truth Community Church in Cincinnati, Ohio, with part one of a message called Who is God? as we continue our series, Key Questions Answered. Don will have the conclusion for you next time, and he'll have more points to consider as you discern from Scripture the attributes of God. Be sure to join us then on The Truth Pulpit. Right now, though, Don's back here in studio with a few closing comments. Well, thanks, Bill. My friend, I'd like to remind you from time to time that our radio broadcasts are edited versions of my full-length sermons, and I would love to have you join many friends from all over the world who follow the full-length messages. Look for the link titled Follow Don's Pulpit at our website, and my friend Bill is here to tell you how to find it. Thanks, Don. And friend, just visit thetruthpulpit.com. That's thetruthpulpit.com. There you'll also find a link to Don's Facebook page and much more, all at thetruthpulpit.com. I'm Bill Wright, and we'll see you again next time when Don Green continues teaching God's people God's word from the truth pulpit.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-01-11 02:45:52 / 2023-01-11 02:54:04 / 8

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