Who Is God?

Let’s begin our discussion of a Christian worldview with a big question: who is God?

This is not an easy question, and I don’t think it could ever be answered completely.  At least, not by humans.  For the Christian, though, God is our ultimate reality.  Without Him, there is nothing.  We see this in the scriptures, and we also see certain attributes of God.  He is (not an exhaustive list): omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient, omni-benevolent, and he is transcendent personality.  Let’s break these down a bit, and see who He is.

He is omnipotent.  That means He’s all-powerful.  This is a way of pointing out His infinite-ness and His sovereignty at the same time.  As He said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.”  There is no other besides Him, and no one or nothing can ever challenge Him.  The question has been raised, “If God’s all powerful, then can God make a rock so big that even God can’t lift it?”  There are a few answers to that, but I like a simple “no” because it’s nonsense.  A rock so big that God can’t lift it is like saying God could make a round square.  It’s a nonsensical entity.  There are rocks that humans can’t lift, but God holds the universe in the span of His hand.  He is all-powerful.

He is omnipresent.  That means He’s everywhere at once.  He transcends space.  This doesn’t mean that He’s in everything.  God is not my computer, but He is here, with me at my computer.  I’m not stepping on God while I stand, but He is with me while I stand.  The Psalmist says that we cannot go to the highest mountain peak or the lowest depths of the sea to get away from God.  He’s always present with us.

He’s omniscient.  That means He knows everything.  He transcends time.  He knows the beginning and then end.  Some argue that the knowledge of God logically necessitates a hard-deterministic view of life.  Basically, if God knows my choices, then I’m not free to make choices.  While His foreknowledge might make decisions inevitable, it doesn’t not make them logically necessary.  Also, when you combine His omniscience and His omnipresence, we see that He might allow us to have actual free choices to make.  More on that later.  The point is, He knows what you’re thinking, and He knows the pain everyone is in.  We are not alone, ever.

He’s omni-benevolent.  That means He’s all-good.  More than that, God is goodness.  This means He’s given us righteous standards to live by and also that He’s merciful.  He must be all-just and all-merciful.  That might seem like a contradiction.  How can God be perfectly just (giving out the punishment rightly due for a crime) and perfectly merciful (not giving out punishment that is rightly due)?  This can only be properly understood in light of the cross.  Jesus lived a perfect life, and willingly laid down His perfect life to save us from the judgement we earned.  Jesus received the judgement so that we would receive mercy.  This saved both God’s justice and His mercy.

He is transcendent personality.  This means that God is greater than us in every way, yet He is personal.  He has given us the Bible that we may know about Him, and that we would know Him.  We, being finite, can never know God exhaustively, but we can know Him to an extent.  His personality allows Him to relate to us, or rather us to Him.  For example, the Bible tells us that God is love, so we know that through love, we can relate to God.

This post is just skimming the surface, but the point is that God is our ultimate reality.  In all His multi-faceted glory, God is the Ultimate.  For Christians, we always fall back to this truth, and from it, we can ascertain other truths, which we’ll go through in future posts.

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