Who is God?
Dictionary describes him as a deity, A supernatural, typically immortal. Supreme being.
But the question before us is not what the dictionary says but who God is to us.
In every language or dialect they have a word to call God but I found out that these words are only descriptive and so cannot be the name of God.
Olorun for example means the owner of heaven.
Let me tell you about my God!
My God is Omnipotent= Psalm135: 5-7/13/15-18(gods can’t even perform human functions let alone the super human)
My God is Omniscience= Psalm 147:5 says,” his understanding is infinite.
Says, “He sees every sparrow that falls and he knows the hairs upon your head”
My God is Omnipresent= Psalm 139: 7-13
Heaven is my throne and the earth is my footstool.
God is your comforter in hard times.
God is a very present help in a time of trouble.
God appeared to people and they called him different names. Some even do some things one cannot think of.
When Moses discovered God’s Greatness he took off his shoes. Exo. 3:3-5
Isaiah said “Woe is me I am undone for I am a man of unclean lips who dwells among those of unclean lips”. Isa 6:5
Abraham called him Jehovah Jireh Gen. 22: 13- 14
Moses called him Jehavoh Nissi Exo. 17: 12-15
Gideon called him Jehovah Shalom Jud. 6:23-24
If I ask you to describe God in one word what will you call him?
You know the story of how the prophets of Baal and Elijah began a duel to see whose god was God. You find that they were by the end of the day utterly discouraged and utterly tormented by the self inflicted wounds that their god had allowed them to have. Elijah mocked them and made fun because he knew that their God was only in their minds but the “God of Elijah” was in his heart. Then we find the conclusion of the matter by the answer of the living God of Elijah by fire.
I think it would be true to say that today we have more knowledge of God than we have ever had. I believe that we know more, theologically speaking, about God than any generation has ever known. There are more books about God, there are more books on the secrets of the Christian life, there are more resources, tapes, records, libraries, churches, missionary organisations, in this world than there has ever been – but, arguably, we could say that God is little-known! There is much known of God, but what about knowledge in God?
Whatever you do, do not mistake knowing God with having the knowledge of God. I am not speaking of a knowledge of God – we have a great knowledge of God, but do we know our God? Secondly, I am not talking about knowing godliness – for we all know godliness, we know what it is to live a godly life, even if we are not living it, we know how to live it. We read from the word of God the precepts and promises of what it is to live a godly life, but that – do not mistake that for knowing your God. John the apostle tells us: ‘This is life eternal, that they might know Thee’, the only true God, ‘and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent’. In all of our knowledge of God and godliness and His word, the question is: do we know our God, and where is that joy unspeakable and full of glory that is promised to the child of God who knows his Father?
‘How can I know Him? I know about Him, but how can I move – make that transition from knowing about, to knowing Him?’. I give you an answer from the book of Job: ‘Acquaint now thyself with Him, and be at peace’.
How to Know God
1. ‘If we are to get to know our God, we must live a holy life’.
2. We want to have an intimate knowledge of our God, but we cannot have that knowledge if we do not have a holy zeal. We need a holy zeal in our stand for God and in our private prayer for God. (Jesus sent traders out of the temple)
3. A holy obedience to God – Titus 1 and verse 16 we read this: ‘They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate’. So there is a people who profess that they know God intimately, but by their works they deny it – they haven’t got that holy obedience to God.
4. We need a holy death to self. Do you want to see God? Do you want to know God? Not just know about Him, but follow after to know this God intimately that we have been studying and looking at(the three Hebrew)
5. There is a holy satisfaction in God. Dan. 3: 16.
If we’re going to know God – we have to be satisfied in God! We have to decide [that] it makes no difference what life throws at me, or what illness throws at me, or what death brings to me, how soon it comes – I’m satisfied in God.
6. A holy meditation upon God. You see, those who know their God have great thoughts of Him. Dan 5:22
Benefit of Knowing God
The spiritual benefits of knowing God are literally exciting. We shall be talking more about them in conjunction with each individual attribute, but let us consider a few general advantages as we get started, in order that we might sharpen our spiritual appetite and arouse our thirst for God. Here are some of the good things we will enjoy as our knowledge of God grows.
Scripture declares that “the people who know their God will display strength and take action” (Daniel 11:32). That is a great promise.
People today who truly know God have courage and strength. They stand for righteousness, oppose wickedness, endure persecution when necessary, triumph through suffering, and accomplish great things for God’s glory. There is no other way to have spiritual power except through the knowledge of God.
Daniel was a man who knew God. When the presidents and princes of the Medo Persian Empire prevailed upon King Darius to issue a decree prohibiting anybody from making petitions to any god or man except the king, or be cast into the lion’s den, Daniel went right on praying to the God of Heaven (Daniel 6:4-15). Not even the threat of death could keep him from it. He knew his God, and people who know God have the courage and strength to do His will even though the whole world be against them and everybody around them be giving in to sin.
Peter tells us something about people who know God. He says, “Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord” (2 Peter 1:2). His statement reveals that both grace and peace are increased in the believer’s life by the full or thorough knowledge of God.
But it is the peace that I want to address here—an inner tranquillity, a quiet confidence, a stability and control in the face of difficult circumstances. It multiples in us through the knowledge of God who controls our circumstances. How desperately we need peace in our uptight world! When we have peace, we realize that there is no reason to worry over every new problem. The all-powerful God who loves us and cares about every detail in our lives is going to see that it turns out best. The better we get to know Him, the more we rest in His wise plans for our future.
There is a great illustration in the book of Daniel of the peace that comes from knowing God. King Nebuchadnezzar had erected a ninety-foot statue of himself before which all his subjects were commanded to bow. To refuse meant death in the fiery furnace. But Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were men who knew God. (Daniel 3:15)
Wouldn’t you like to have peace like that? Wouldn’t you like to stand up to any trial, any problem, any danger, or any threat, and be able to say confidently, “It really doesn’t matter what happens to me.
Paul was a man who enjoyed the benefits of knowing God, and he longed for his converts to share those same blessings. He often prayed to that end, and in those prayers we learn more about the advantages of knowing God. For the Ephesians he prayed, “that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him” (Ephesians 1:17).
The people who intimately know their God have spiritual understanding that far surpasses their formal education. The time they have spent with Him has given them more insight into the purpose of life than any of the world’s great universities could ever provide.
Peter and John were men like that. They were preaching Christ in the temple courtyard and the Jewish religious leaders were furious. They took the two disciples into custody and questioned them about their activities, insisting that they reveal by what power they performed their miracles. Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, delivered a powerful testimony to the person of Christ that demonstrated not only his familiarity with recent events in Jerusalem, but also his grasp of Old Testament Scripture (Acts 4:8-13).
Your Real Purpose
Isn’t that what you really want? Not so you can amaze your friends with your knowledge of Scripture or your grasp of theological truth. But so that you can know what life is all about, and make an impact on their lives for the glory of God as they observe the reality of Christ in you. It will happen when you get to know Him intimately.
Paul’s prayer for the Colossians describes another advantage of knowing God: “For this reason also, since the day we heard of it, we have not ceased to pray for you and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so that you may walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God” (Colossians 1:9-10).
Some are asking, “Why can’t I do what is right? Why don’t I have the love and joy and peace that I crave?” Here is one reason. Our fruitfulness and our growth depend on our knowledge of God. We ought to be able to understand that, since it works the same way in the human realm. As I grow in my knowledge of my friends I enjoy being with them more and I have a greater desire to please them. That is what occurs in our relationship with the Lord. The more we know of His love for us the more we love Him in return (1 John 4:19). And the more we love Him, the more we want to please Him (1 John 5:3; John 14:15).
There is another human analogy that will help us understand this truth. Psychologists tell us that we acquire similarities to the people we get to know intimately and with whom we spend much time. As we spend time with our Lord and grow in our knowledge of Him we begin to develop Christ-like traits, the very things which the New Testament refers to as fruit. In other words, we will bear fruit and increase in every good work by the knowledge of God. Try getting to know Him better. You will enjoy it.
There is one more general blessing of knowing God that I would like to point out. It is found in Paul’s letter to the Galatians. Those Galatians had a problem with legalism. Their Christian lives were a grind: “I’ve got to do this, I’ve got to do that, I can’t go here, I can’t say that.” They lived in constant fear that they had not done enough to please God and that led to overwhelming feelings of guilt. The only way to compensate for their guilt was to try harder. They were probably saying, “I must grit my teeth and give it all I’ve got. But I really don’t feel like it. I wish God would get off my back.” So along with the fear and guilt there was probably resentment against God for the pressure they were feeling. One word sums up that kind of Christian life—bondage!
God never intended us to live like that. Knowing Him truly, personally, and intimately delivers us from bondage. Paul wrote to them, “But now that you have come to know God, how is it that you turn back again to the weak and worthless elemental things, to which you desire to be enslaved all over again?” (Galatians 4:9) They came to know God and their knowledge had delivered them from bondage. But as sad as it was, they had willfully chosen to put themselves back under the very bondage from which they had been delivered. Why? What was their problem?
Trying to please God without growing in our knowledge of Him will put us under bondage every time. We think we have to perform to be accepted. So we struggle and strive to please Him, never sure we have succeeded, frustrated over the pressure we think He is putting on us, and yet afraid to stop trying. That kind of life is sheer misery.
There is actually no end to the blessings of knowing God. As Peter put it, “His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence” (2 Peter 1:3). Everything we need to assure us of eternity in God’s presence is found in our knowledge of Him. Everything we need to help us live godly lives here and now is found in our knowledge of Him. Everything! It sounds again as though getting to know God could be the most important aspect of our Christian lives. What are we waiting for? Let’s begin to grow in our knowledge of Him.
Let me just finish by saying this: will you taste and see that the Lord is good? The old sage said this: ‘The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step’ – do you know what the one step towards knowing our God is? A desire to know Him. Do you want to know Him? The Psalmist wanted to know Him: ‘My soul followeth hard after Thee. As the deer panteth after the water brook, so doth my soul pant after thee, O God’. ‘For I am determined to know nothing among you, save Jesus Christ and him crucified…O, that I might know him, and the power of his resurrection, and fellowship of his sufferings’. ‘Then’, Hosea says, ‘Then shall we follow on to know the Lord: his going forth is prepared as the morning; and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth’. May we learn to know our God.
Pastor OLAYIMIKA ANIBABA
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