Category Archives: Doctrine

Essential Truths 4 – God Himself

Moments of Wonder

Most of us have experienced a remarkable “moments of wonder” in our lives.  A six-year-old child on Christmas morning, the groom seeing the bride appear at the other end of the aisle.  How about Indiana Jones when he busted through and saw the gold.  But that’s just fake gold! Think about Isaiah, who in ch. 6 of his great book of prophecy, tells of the life-changing vision God gave him where he saw angels circling the throne of God singing Holy, Holy, Holy –wow!  He was confronted by the unfiltered brilliance of God – as real as possible, standing in awe of God’s holiness.

God’s person & presence elicits deep, life-changing wonder in us.  Today’s study will send us down the path of that wonder.  Go slowly, drink in the richness of Who God is.  Allow Him to manifest His wisdom and power in your heart & life.  Like Jacob struggling with the angel of God (Gen. 32:22ff), get alone with God (Tozer would have said “grab hold of God”) and don’t let go until He reveals His rich holiness to you in a way that influences your walk & ministry.  What a privilege we have to be given this revelation of Who He is!  Also note that the result of this vision was Isaiah’s calling to ministry!

God’s Being and Attributes

The doctrine of what God has revealed about Himself basically falls into two segments which express how He stands unique and alone above all His creation:

  • His Being & Attributes – Intrinsic, indispensable, permanent and inseparable qualities that characterize or identify the being of God above of (or outside of) all creation
  • His Activities & Works – Expressed in creation, observable by man, moving forward the completion of God’s purpose for all His creation & our redemption

We believe that God is…

  • The One True God – Deut. 6:4
  • Transcendent over all creation – Isa. 55:8-9
  • Holy and infinitely perfect – Deut. 32:4
  • Never changes (immutability) – Num. 23:19
  • Sovereign – Prov. 16:1-4; Rom. 9:19-21
  • Source and sustainer of all things
  • Pursues and maintains relationship with His creation – Hosea 6:2; 11:1-4; Jn. 3:16; Phil.2:5-8; Heb. 7:25 (What do you think?  One could suggest that Hebrews is summarized as the “Relentless Pursuit of Man for Salvation”)
  • Compassionate and forgiving – Deut. 30:9; Lament.3:22-23; Rom. 5:6-10; 2 Pet. 3:9

One of the best ways you can expand your awareness of Biblical Doctrine is to read “Doctrinal Statements”.  These documents might 5 pages or 50, possibly shallow or verbose, or perhaps succinct summary or significant explanation of biblical truth.  You can find them on the web by searching for Christian leaders, colleges, or churches where they might post there document online.  Here is a sample from three good sources of their statement for the doctrine of Theology Proper.

Key Bible Verses to Study

  • 6:4 – the Lord, He is One – Listen to Him!
  • Exo 33:20, 23 – no man can see God… the glory of God as He passes by
  • Deut 6:4 – hear O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord is One!
  • Jn 4:24 – God is spirit
  • Jn 4:34 – Jesus said… my food is to do the will of Him Who sent Me and to accomplish His work
  • Jn 16:8-13 – 13, when He the Spirit of Truth come, He will guide you into all truth
  • Eph 1:11 – having been predestined according to His purpose
  • Eph 3:11 – in accordance with the eternal purpose which He carried out in Christ
  • 1 Tim 2:5 – there is one God and one mediator
  • 1 Cor 2:10 – God is revealed through the Spirit, for the Spirit teaches all things, even the depths of God – power & wisdom
  • 2 Cor 13:4 – He lives because of the power of God
  • Heb 10:7 – I (Christ) have come (in the scroll of the book it is written of Me) to do Your will, O God

The Chief End of Man

 

The Tragedy of Unbelief

  • 1 Cor. 2:14
  • Atheism – open denial of God – Psa. 14:1
  • Absolute – “I have examined all the facts as to the existence of God and I deny that they are sufficient to believe God exists”
  • Providential – “I doubt the existence of God, and deny His providential dealings and care of the world”
  • Deist – freedom from accountability – Jn 3:19-20
  • Practical – “I don’t publicly deny God, but He is irrelevant to me”
  • Denial by life – Titus 1:16
  • Biblical Theism
  • What the Bible says about the reality, essence and works of God
  • God is assumed in the Bible – “believe that He is”, Heb. 11:6
  • Either God is all that the Bible says, or it is the biggest and most deceptive hoax ever compiled
  • The strongest evidence comes from Christ, which, if in error, repudiates the nature of Christ
  • In spite of the evidence, without the illumination of the Spirit, man will not believe or understand.

Why Apologize?

Christian apologetics is not an effort to apologize to agnostic critics.  It is an effort to reasonably explain the strength of our Christian beliefs.

  • Moral Argument
    • Man’s intellectual and moral nature demands a superior origin
  • Teleological Argument
    • The Universe is not a chaos but a cosmos (organized system)
  • Design presupposes intelligent design
  • Cosmological Argument
    • Every effect requires a sufficient cause – God is the only sufficient cause for the universe
  • Ontological Argument
    • Man’s universal, innate sense that there is a God Who is perfect, independent, infinite – civilized or uncivilized
    • This belief must be real, and can lead to believe there is a true God

 

 

Study this week in the Word!

  1. Deut. 6:4 – how many true Gods are there?
  2. Each person of Trinity identified as God in one of these verses:
    God the _______
    God the _______
    God the _______
  3. What attribute(s) does Col. 1:16-17 tell us God has?
  4. In Jn. 4:24, Jesus tells us that God is what? This fact tells us we need what kind of relationship with God?
  5. According to Eph. 3:9-11, how long ago did God set His plans in place for His chosen people?
  6. According to 1 Cor. 2:11-12, what are we receiving and how?
  7. From Isa. 6:3 and 5, what did God reveal to Isaiah?
  8. How much knowledge does God have according to Psa. 139?