Saturday, July 15, 2017

Doctrine Matters: Who is God and How has He revealed Himself to us?

In Article 2, the Baptist Faith and Message states, “There is one and only one living and true God. He is an intelligent, spiritual, and personal Being, the Creator, Redeemer, Preserver, and Ruler of the universe. God is infinite in holiness and all other perfections. God is all powerful and all knowing; and His perfect knowledge extends to all things, past, present, and future, including the future decisions of His free creatures. To Him we owe the highest love, reverence, and obedience. The eternal triune God reveals Himself to us as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, with distinct personal attributes, but without division of nature, essence, or being.

The Bible states in Genesis 1:1 that “in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”  We believe that this God is the “one and only living and true God.”  God exists and He has created the heavens and the earth and He has revealed Himself to us in creation and in His Word.  We believe that He is intelligent, spiritual and personal.  He is the Creator, Redeemer, Preserver and Ruler of the universe.  He is Sovereign, meaning that He is the King of the universe.  Ephesians 4:6 says there is “one God and Father, who is above all and through all and in all.”  The confessions states He is “infinite in holiness and all other perfections. God is all powerful and all knowing”  He is a Holy God, meaning He is separate from us and transcends us.  He is omnipotent (meaning all powerful) and He is omniscient (meaning that He knows all things).  I like this statement, “His perfect knowledge extends to all things, past, present, and future, including the future decisions of His free creatures.”  God knows everything, He never learns anything.  He has perfect knowledge, meaning He doesn’t have to look into the future to learn something, He already knows it and knows all of the choices that His free creatures will make.  Really, if He didn’t know all things, if He wasn’t all powerful and if He didn’t rule the universe, He would not be God.  By definition God is all powerful, all knowing and Sovereign.

Scripture reveals that while there is one God, He reveals in three persons.  This is the doctrine of the Trinity.  The triune God is three persons but yet one God.  These persons are Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  This is why the confession says, “The eternal triune God reveals Himself to us as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, with distinct personal attributes, but without division of nature, essence, or being.”  The Great commission affirms this when it says that we are to “make disciples of all nations baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit” Matthew 28:19.   The hymn, “Holy, Holy, Holy” affirms this when it says, “God in three persons, blessed trinity.”

Next time we will at each part of the Godhead: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

A. God the Father

Genesis 1:1; 2:7; Exodus 3:14; 6:2-3; 15:11ff.; 20:1ff.; Leviticus 22:2; Deuteronomy 6:4; 32:6; 1 Chronicles 29:10; Psalm 19:1-3; Isaiah 43:3,15; 64:8; Jeremiah 10:10; 17:13; Matthew 6:9ff.; 7:11; 23:9; 28:19; Mark 1:9-11; John 4:24; 5:26; 14:6-13; 17:1-8; Acts 1:7; Romans 8:14-15; 1 Corinthians 8:6; Galatians 4:6; Ephesians 4:6; Colossians 1:15; 1 Timothy 1:17; Hebrews 11:6; 12:9; 1 Peter 1:17;1 John 5:7.

B. God, the Son

Genesis 18:1ff.; Psalms 2:7ff.; 110:1ff.; Isaiah 7:14; Isaiah 53:1-12; Matthew 1:18-23; 3:17; 8:29; 11:27; 14:33; 16:16,27; 17:5; 27; 28:1-6,19; Mark 1:1; 3:11; Luke 1:35; 4:41; 22:70; 24:46; John 1:1-18,29; 10:30,38; 11:25-27; 12:44-50; 14:7-11; 16:15-16,28; 17:1-5, 21-22; 20:1-20,28; Acts 1:9; 2:22-24; 7:55-56; 9:4-5,20; Romans 1:3-4; 3:23-26; 5:6-21; 8:1-3,34; 10:4; 1 Corinthians 1:30; 2:2; 8:6; 15:1-8,24-28; 2 Corinthians 5:19-21; 8:9; Galatians 4:4-5; Ephesians 1:20; 3:11; 4:7-10; Philippians 2:5-11; Colossians 1:13-22; 2:9; 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18; 1 Timothy 2:5-6; 3:16; Titus 2:13-14; Hebrews 1:1-3; 4:14-15; 7:14-28; 9:12-15,24-28; 12:2; 13:8; 1 Peter 2:21-25; 3:22; 1 John 1:7-9; 3:2; 4:14-15; 5:9; 2 John 7-9; Revelation 1:13-16; 5:9-14; 12:10-11; 13:8; 19:16.

C. God, the Holy Spirit

Genesis 1:2; Judges 14:6; Job 26:13; Psalms 51:11; 139:7ff.; Isaiah 61:1-3; Joel 2:28-32; Matthew 1:18; 3:16; 4:1; 12:28-32; 28:19; Mark 1:10,12; Luke 1:35; 4:1,18-19; 11:13; 12:12; 24:49; John 4:24; 14:16-17,26; 15:26; 16:7-14; Acts 1:8; 2:1-4,38; 4:31; 5:3; 6:3; 7:55; 8:17,39; 10:44; 13:2; 15:28; 16:6; 19:1-6; Romans 8:9-11,14-16,26-27; 1 Corinthians 2:10-14; 3:16; 12:3-11,13; Galatians 4:6; Ephesians 1:13-14; 4:30; 5:18; 1 Thessalonians 5:19; 1 Timothy 3:16; 4:1; 2 Timothy 1:14; 3:16; Hebrews 9:8,14; 2 Peter 1:21; 1 John 4:13; 5:6-7; Revelation 1:10; 22:17.




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