Bible Introduction: The Nature of God
Understanding God: An Overview
developed by Bob Young
1. The PERSON of God.
- His Uniqueness. No God is like our God, the God of Scripture, the God revealed in the Bible, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
- His Character. This God is unselfish, identifies with human beings, is compassionate, loving, eternal. This God is holy, just, gracious, merciful.
- His Metaphysical Attributes. All-knowing, all POWERFUL, all wise, transcending time and space.
- Summary. This God is knowable, PERSONAL, can be known and personal relationships are possible.
This person and nature of God, as compared to us, enables us to see holiness and to see sin. We see his power contrasted with our weakness. Therefore, we honor him; we respect him; we worship him.
2. The PURPOSE of God.
- God has a plan/purpose in and for this world, and is at work always, orchestrating history, here and there, in the lives of Christians and non-Christians, intervening, caring, providing.
- God has been and is at work--in creation, sustaining the world, providence, revelation, and ultimately in redemption, both present and future.
3. The PROCLAMATION (revelation) of God influences and develops the PEOPLE of God.
This is the word of God. We hear him. We obey him precisely.
- God reveals his PERSON, his POWER, and his PURPOSE.
- The acknowledgment of God's revelation helps identify those who are the PEOPLE of God. God's people listen to and heed God and his word.
- This PERSUASIVE God is PENETRATING the world, and he reveals himself in history. The biblical story is not only a narrative of history, but is a select narrative describing the lives of those to whom God has revealed himself with the result that they may be called the children/people of God.
4. The PLAN of God.
- God's specific plan for the accomplishing of his purpose is that God initiates (both in his work and in his revelation) a love relationship with all humankind. He initiates for no other reason than that he loves his creation.
- This is the ultimate expression of grace, that God acts on behalf of his creation before any response from his creation.
- God not only initiates (takes the first step toward) the love relationship but provides the means by which the sin-broken relationship can be repaired so that the love relationship might be established.
5. God's PRESENCE among his PEOPLE.
- The nature of the love relationship God initiates is exhibited in an understanding of the highest kind of love, agape love.
- God invites us to involvement in his eternal purpose to accomplish his work.
- No response other than acceptance and commitment to God's person, purpose, plan, and work adequately conveys that human beings have joined God in a love relationship as coworkers in God's cause. The nature of this faith commitment is the subject of much discussion in Christianity. Here we experience God.
6. Our PROFESSION of God.
- God's invitation to work with him always leads to a decision based on faith--belief and action. To join God in his work, to accept and obey his call, to enjoy his presence begins in a faith profession.
7. Our PENITENCE toward God.
- Joining God in his work requires major life adjustments.
8. God's PROVISION, PROVIDENCE, and PROTECTION for us.
- We come to know and experience God as we obey and his works his work in and through us.
- This experience of God--being in tune with God, knowing his presence, confident and aware of relationship with him, reinforcing that awareness through meditation, prayer, study, communication and the meeting of our minds with His--is the essence of relationship.
9. God's PROMISES.
- God's promises indicate what God's present and future plans are for us, and how in his plan we will eventually reach his ultimate goal.
Last updated March 25, 2010.