What is God really like?
Chaplain Bertram Bobb
As we turn over a new page in our life, may the New Year 2013 be a happy and successful new year for you.
As we approach this new year, do you ever hear, think or ask the question, “What is God really like?” I believe it is possible to know what God is like.
Many men say that God is absolute and that is all we know about Him. Others say that God is the expression of everything that is in nature and in life – all that is in nature is God.
Almost everyone in the world has wrestled with the question. Thousands of people down through the ages have looked up at the stars at night, wondered and asked themselves: What is God really like? I am not going to try to answer all the arguments concerning all the viewpoints. I couldn’t anyway.
A viewpoint that I can’t understand or believe is evolution (species that grew in the water, grew a tail, walked on the ground, grew hair, legs, climbed trees, and became a man). It doesn’t seem like anyone could understand this.
I am going to the Bible, which I believe to be the Word of God. In the Bible, we have a full revelation of what God is like.
If we believe that in the Bible we have a revelation of God, then our minds can be completely satisfied as to the correct answer. There are hundreds of things we could say about God as revealed in the Bible, but we are going to look at only four today. First, the Bible says that God is a Spirit in the Gospel of John. In John 4 Jesus is talking to the woman at the well of Synchar, and he He says in John 4:3, “God is a Spirit.” What do you imagine? Cloudy vapor? But that is not a picture of God.
He is not limited to body, shape, or boundaries, because God has no limitation. He can be everywhere at the same time.
We read the words of Jesus after His resurrection in Luke 24:39: “Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as you see me have.”
So we know that a spirit has no body. Spirit is something that is not limited by body. Spirit is not bound in a body.
There is no limit to God. There is no limit to His wisdom, His power, His love, His mercy.
Everything fits into place once you understand who and what God really is, and when you get acquainted with Him.
Second, the Bible not only reveals God as Spirit, but the Bible also reveals God as a person. Everywhere in the Bible we read: “God Loves.”
Everything that we attribute to a person is attributed to God.
A person is one who feels, thinks, wishes, desires and has all the expressions of personality. And here on this earth our personalities are limited to our bodies. You are an immortal soul. Someday your personality will leave your body. Your soul is the real you and will live forever for eternity.
God is not bound by a body, but He is a person. He feels, He thinks, He loves, He forgives. He sympathizes with things that make up our lives.
Third, the Bible declares not only that God is a spirit and God is a person, but that God is a Holy God. He is perfect and absolute in every detail. He is the Holy and Righteous Being.
From Genesis to Revelation, God reveals Himself as a Holy God. He is perfect and absolute in every detail. He is too holy to endure sinful living. He is a Holy and Perfect God.
If America could ever get a vision of His Perfect Righteousness, what a difference it would make in the way our nation lives. If we could see the difference that separates men’s unrighteousness from God’s Righteousness, it could change our way of living. The Scripture declares Him to be Light in whom there is “no darkness at all.” It is impossible to understand the Bible unless you have a clear understanding of the holiness of God.
Because God is holy, there is separation between God and the sinner. We read in Isaiah 59:2: “But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.”
Not only is the sinner separated from God, but God is separated from the sinner. Because God is holy, He can have nothing to do with sin.
Before sin came, man and God had fellowship with each other. Now that fellowship is broken and it is an impossibility for a sinner to have any contact with God unless it be through Jesus Christ.
Man does not or cannot acquire sinlessness that is necessary to come into the presence of God. Jesus Christ is the only way by which we can come into the presence of God the Father. We read in John 14:6: “Jesus saith unto him I am the way, the truth and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”
In God’s holiness lies the reason for the death of Christ. What His Holiness demanded – the penalty for sin. His love provided penalty in His Only Begotten Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. He was beaten, nailed, suffered and died on the cross for you and me.
We are dealing with a Holy, Righteous and Pure God. He will not tolerate our evils and sins.
How long is this pure God going to endure our divorce rate, our overall breakdown of morals, or immortality, our drunkenness, our swearing?
Were it not for the mercy and long suffering of God, we would be judged and chastened.
Fourth, God is Love. Many people have misunderstood that part of God’s nature. The fact that God is love does not mean everything is sweet, beautiful and happy and that God’s love could not possibly allow punishment for sin.
God’s holiness demands that all sin be punished, but God’s love provided a plan of redemption and salvation for sinful man. God’s love provided the Cross of Jesus Christ by which man have forgiveness and cleansing. It was the love of God that SENT Jesus Christ to the cross.
Who can describe or measure the love of God? The Bible is a revelation of the fact that God is love.
When we preach justice, it is justice tempered with love. When we preach righteousness, it is righteousness founded on love.
When we preach the resurrection of Christ, we are preaching the miracle of love. When we preach the return of Christ, we are preaching the fulfillment of love.
No matter what sin you have committed, no matter how black, dirty, shameful or terrible it may be, God loves you. You may be at the gate of Hell, God loves you with an everlasting love.
Because of His love, there is a way to salvation. A WAY BACK TO God through Jesus Christ His Son.
It is your part to believe. It is your part to receive. You can sit all the days of your life under the preaching of the love of God and die without Christ. Or you can open your heart today and say, “Come into my heart, Lord Jesus, I receive you today.” Will you do that now?