Season 2, Episode 16
For Monday, August 24, 2015
“The Essence of God”
Welcome to The New You, where we focus on maintaining and accentuating the new that Christ has created in you. I’m Robert Hatfield, and here is today’s scripture:
And God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” And He said, “Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you’ ” (Exo. 3:14).
The Godhead consists of three distinct Persons who are unified in one Divine Nature. Thus, we discuss God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.
But what is that Nature like? The Nature of God is comprised of His essence and His attributes. “Essence” means substance, Who God is. “Attributes” means qualities, what God does. The fact is, the essence and nature of God are so closely linked that it is impossible to separate them. However, we are going to consider them separately for the sake of studying them from God’s Word.
So let’s talk about the essence of God. There are several characteristics of that Divine essence that I want us to notice. These will help us to, in a limited sense, better understand Who God is, and what He is like.
God is a spirit.
Jesus told us that in John 4:24. God is not physical, except for when He became incarnate in Jesus Christ (John 1:14; Gal. 4:4). The Bible uses anthropomorphism as expressions to give God human characteristics (such as referring to God’s hands and God’s ears, Isaiah 59:1-2).
The fact that God is spirit also means that God is invisible. No one has seen God at any time (John 1:18; 1 Tim. 6:16; 1 John 4:12). Passages which indicate that people saw God are figurative (such as Exo. 24:9-11). People see manifestations of God and the works of God, but they do not see God Himself.
God is alive.
God is “the living and true God” (1 Thes. 1:9; Mat. 16:16). God is not just an “influence” or a “force.” God lives! Life implies activity and power. God is not to be compared to idols or images (Acts 17:24-25).
God is self-evident.
God is not dependent upon any outside factor for His existence (Job 38:4). He is the always existing One; the uncaused Cause. There has never been a time and there will never be a time when God does not exist and when He is not exactly as He is now in terms of His nature.
God is eternal.
He is “the everlasting God” (Gen. 21:33). Psalm 90 declares, “Even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God” (Psa. 90:2). You know, for God, eternity is now. God is aware of past, present, and future. In fact, past, present, and future are only in relation to humanity, not to God. Isaiah 46:10 says that God declares “the end from the beginning, and from ancient times things that are not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will do all My pleasure.’ ”
God is immense and vast.
He cannot be measured or contained. God is infinite in relation to space.
“Can anyone hide himself in secret places,
So I shall not see him?” says the LORD;
“Do I not fill heaven and earth?” says the LORD (Jer. 23:24).
Let’s wrap it up: This does not begin to scratch the surface of the essence of God. And yet, how can we not come away from these thoughts thinking, “How great is our God!” That’s the God Whom we serve. That’s the God Who knows your name, your fears, your struggles, your triumphs, and your heart. There’s nothing my God cannot do.
Memory Verse: This week’s verse reminds us of God’s nature, both of His essence and His attributes. 1 Timothy 1:17 is the verse.
Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, to God who alone is wise, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen (1 Tim. 1:17).
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Join us tomorrow, when we’ll begin to discuss the attributes of God. I’ll meet you then for The New You.