Saturday, October 19, 2013

God Defined

In the words of The Village Church pastor Matt Chandler "Everyone is a theologian, but some of you are heretics". Theology is the study of God; His attributes, person and character. When people talk about God they have in their mind their own abstract ideas of what God is like. Evan an atheist, before he can claim to reject God, has to define in his own mind, what it is that he is rejecting. Thus what we believe about God can influence whether or not we believe in God.

The earliest prayer I learned as a child was this: "God is great, God is good, let us thank him for our food; Amen". Now most would say that is a really shallow prayer, but it contains the foundation of an outline we can use to define God. "God is great" speaks of the Excellency of His attributes. "God is good" reveals the virtue of His character.

Defining an abstract idea like God may seem odd but it has a very practical application. As a software developer I practice Object Oriented Programming (OOP); wherein you must define system objects with their attributes and functions before you can use them in a program. So today we will begin a theology program by creating an abstract definition of God, using the dual revelation of nature and scripture to aid our understanding.

God is great – The Excellency of His attributes

Spirit and Person – We learn from the origin of creation is that God is not made of or constrained by the matter and energy of this physical world. He is immaterial, he is Spirit (John 4:24). Spirit defined is vital principle or animating force within living beings. Life is not possible without God, He is the animating force behind all life. He (Jesus incarnate) is the image of the invisible God (Colossians 1:15) and To the King of the ages, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen. (1 Timothy 1:17). We also see God as a person in that he has relationships within the Trinitarian God-head and with his created beings (angels and man). So God as Spirit and person can relate to us, but is not limited by the physical realm. We experience God as three persons Father, Son, and Spirit.

Eternal – In Genesis we see God existing before creation. In Exodus God identifies Himself as the "I AM", that is the self-existent one. Revelation 1:8 calls him the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last. When we think of eternal, we tend to think a long time, but that is incomplete. Standard Model physics has learned that the Cosmic Creation Event not only created all matter and energy but space and time itself. Time as we understand it did not exist before creation and God exists in this eternal dimension unlimited by time.

Omnipotent – All powerful, God can do whatever he wills. Genesis 18:14 asks "is anything too hard for God"? Job 42:2 says of God "I know you can do all things and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted". Further we see God's power at work in us in Matthew 19:26 "with God all things are possible". The power that formed the worlds, positioned the stars, brought up continents, and created life, is the same power that will redeem sinful men.

Omniscient – All knowing. A part of this is tied to God's eternal attribute. Where we experience life like a movie one frame or picture at a time, God sees all time as though it were now. What will be true in the future is just as clear to Him as what was true in the past, or what is true in the present. Job 11 asks "Can you find out the deep things of God"?

Have you not known? Have you not heard?

    The Lord is the everlasting God,

    the Creator of the ends of the earth.

He does not faint or grow weary;

    his understanding is unsearchable. (Isaiah 40:28)


Whereas we can know God and be known by Him, we cannot know everything God knows. Our temporal minds are limited by our physical reality so we will surely be able to know more once we are translated to be like Jesus. Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! (Romans 11:33)

Omnipresent – Just as God is not limited or constrained by time, so He is also not limited by space. There is no place where God cannot be, not physically, but just as certain. God moves in a way that transcends our 3 dimensions of space. Comparing God to us is like comparing us to a paper doll on a table, with only two dimensions. Psalm 139:7-12 highlights this attribute God:

Where shall I go from your Spirit?

Or where shall I flee from your presence?

If I ascend to heaven, you are there!

If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!

If I take the wings of the morning

and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,

even there your hand shall lead me,

and your right hand shall hold me.

If I say, "Surely the darkness shall cover me,

and the light about me be night,"

even the darkness is not dark to you;

the night is bright as the day,

for darkness is as light with you.

Unchangeable – Immutable. Whereas the physical world works on the law of decay or entropy always changing in every way; the immaterial God does not change. Malachi 3:6 says, I the Lord do not change. So as we look at each of the attributes we need to remember they are static, thus once established, they cannot be changed. Thus we see if God is constrained by anything it is only by His own nature.


God is good – The virtue of His character

Holy – Holiness is a purity or incorruptibility of character that begins and ends with God. Recently preacher taught us to chant "holy, holy, holy", like the angels of heaven. The angels only say this in the center of God's presence. Any holiness we experience as people we obtain from our relationship with God. Exodus 15:11 illustrates this, Who is like you, O Lord, among the gods? Who is like you, majestic in holiness.

God is free from evil and from any evil influence. James 1:13 speaks of this, Let no one say when he is tempted, "I am being tempted by God," for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. The holiness of God also explains the difficulty of sinful man to approach God.

Proverbs 15:9—The way of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, and Isaiah 59:2—but your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden his face from you so that he does not hear.
Because of His holiness God cannot ignore sin, and he has a few ways of dealing with it, which we will see next.


Just – God is perfect in justice and thus all the judgments he renders are righteous. God separates himself from sin either by purifying it sacrificially, or destroying it. Jesus is revealed in scripture as the righteous judge, and when looking at scripture we saw last week it is the words of God that will judge the actions of man, and it is this justice that sinful men find most objectionable. "And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before the throne, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done. The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hell delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. Then Death and Hell were cast into the lake of fire; this is the second death. And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire." Rev. 20:12-15


Love – 1 John 4:16 tells us flatly that God is love. God can love deeper, forgive more perfectly, and wait more patiently than any other relationship you will experience.

Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. (1 John 4:7-10)

Who demonstrate their love like God? Greater love has no one than this, than that someone lay down his life for his friends. (John 15:13). This is what Jesus did for us, but it also is the love of the Father for us, For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16)


Though we are sinners and stand in front of a holy God, we also are standing in front of a loving God who loved us so much that He created a way for us to overcome His wrath because of sin (derived from the justice of God) and redeems us. This is love. Any other concept of love is derived from it.

Conclusions about God

Philosophers don't start with the question "Is there a God?" they ask, "Why is there something, rather than nothing"? One of the great philosophers on the subject of God and creation was Thomas Aquinas. And he made a few fundamental observations that still plague those who argue against God's existence. 1) If it is possible that something might not exist, then it is certain that at some time it did not exist. 2) Everything that begins to exist has a cause; the universe began to exist, so the universe has a cause. 3) If anything exists contingently, at least one thing exists necessarily.

Plug what we know from modern cosmology into this philosophy and the answer is obvious. The universe at one time did not exist. To come into existence the universe had to have a cause. A universe with a beginning, and a cause, points to a supernatural existence outside of creation. This supernatural eternal existence, the uncreated cause, is best described as the God of the Bible.

An old rabbinical proverb puts it like this: Being what he is, God could not fail to be who he is, and being who he is, God could not fail to be. So the sum of the matter from the Bible is thus, God is the eternal creator, because an eternal creator was necessary. The infinite God exists, because he must. The temporal cannot exist without the infinite.

namespace Theology


protected abstract class God


#region Great //Excellent attributes

static Attribute Spirit_and_Person;

static Attribute Eternal;

static Attribute Omnipotent;

static Attribute Omnicient;

static Attribute Omnipresent;

static Attribute Unchangeable;



#region Good //Virtuous character

public bool Holy(object nature) { return true;}

public bool Just(object judgments) { return true; }

public bool Loving(object relationships) { return true; }




public sealed class Trinitatian_Godhead //3 persons one God


public class Father : God { }

public class Son : God { }

public class HolySpirit : God { }



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