Wednesday, May 18, 2016
Is God Real?
35 You were shown these things so that you might know that the LORD is God; besides Him there is no other. . . . 39 Acknowledge and take to heart this day that the LORD is God in heaven above and on the earth below. There is no other. Deuteronomy 4:35, 39 (NIV)
One of the most fundamental principles of the Holy Bible is that God exists (Deuteronomy 6:4; see also Matthew 22:37-38; Mark 12:29-30; Luke 10:27; Ephesians 4:6; James 2:19). There is no other god besides the true and living LORD God (Deuteronomy 4:35, 39), and He is the Father of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 8:4-6). God the Father is the ultimate source of all creation (see Nehemiah 9:6; Isaiah 37:16; Acts 4:24; Romans 11:36). God's Son Jesus is the dynamic One through whom, with the Father, all things came into existence (see John 1:3; Colossians 1:16; Hebrews 1:2). The true and living God is not only the God of the Jews, but He is also the God of all nations both in heaven and on earth (see Exodus 8:10; 1 Samuel 1:2; Daniel 4:2-3, 37; Daniel 6:26-27; Acts 17:16, 22-31).
Another fundamental principle of the Holy Bible is that the true and living God is to be WORSHIPPED, LOVED, HONORED, OBEYED, AND RESPECTED FIRST (see Deuteronomy 5:7; Deuteronomy 6:4-6). During His earthly ministry, Jesus Christ announced the first and most important commandment of the entire Holy Bible is to “love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength” (Mark 12:30; see also Matthew 22:37-38) and to obey the LORD God’s teachings (see Matthew 4:10). Worshipping anyone or any created thing is sinful and worthless (see Deuteronomy 6:13; Psalm 115:8; Romans 1:18). The LORD God is a devouring fire; He is a jealous God (Deuteronomy 4:24, see also Exodus 20:5; Hebrews 12:29). Yet, the LORD God is a merciful God; He will not abandon you or destroy you (Deuteronomy 4:31; see also Exodus 34:6; Psalm 111:4). Besides, our genuine love, faithfulness, and obedience to the LORD God bring long life and peace not only to ourselves but also to our household (see Deuteronomy 4:1-4, 39-40; Deuteronomy 30:15-20; Proverbs 3:1-6).
Even more, our obedience to God and His teachings found in the Holy Bible displays our wisdom, intelligence, and understanding among others (Deuteronomy 4:6-8; Psalm 19:7; Psalm 119:98; 2 Timothy 3:15). Most important, our love and obedience to the true and living God and His Word pleases and glorifies Him and shows our continual reverence for Him (Deuteronomy 4:10). Our evil deeds and actions provoke the LORD God to anger and His wrath (Deuteronomy 4:25; see also Romans 1:18-32). Nevertheless, the LORD God is gracious and merciful to forgive our sins and tribulation when we turn and seek Him with all our hearts and with all our souls and be obedient to His teachings (Deuteronomy 4:29-30; see also 1 John 1:9). For the LORD God is a merciful God; He will not abandon or destroy you when you wholeheartedly turn to Him and away from your sins (Deuteronomy 4:31).
16 While Paul was waiting for them (Silas and Timothy) in Athens, he was deeply troubled by all the idols he saw everywhere in the city. . . . 22 So Paul, standing before the council, addressed them as follows: “Men of Athens, I notice that you are very religious in every way, 23 for as I was walking along I saw your many shrines. And one of your altars had this inscription on it: ‘To an Unknown God.’ This God, whom you worship without knowing, is the One I am telling you about. 24 He is the God who made the world and everything in it. Since He is Lord of heaven and earth, He does not live in man-made temples, 25 and human hands cannot serve His needs—for He has no needs. He Himself gives life and breath to everything, and He satisfies every need. 26 From one man He created all the nations throughout the whole earth. He decided beforehand when they should rise and fall, and He determined their boundaries. 27 His purpose was for the nations to seek after God and perhaps feel their way toward Him and find Him—though He is not far from any one of us. 28 For in Him we live and move and exist. As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are His offspring.’ 29 And since this is true, we should not think of God as an idol designed by craftsmen from gold or silver or stone. 30 God overlooked people’s ignorance about these things in earlier times, but now He commands everyone everywhere to repent of their sins and turn to Him. 31 For He has set a day for judging the world with justice by the Man He has appointed, and He proved to everyone who this is by raising Him (Jesus) from the dead.” Acts 17:16, 22-31 (NLT)
The New Student Bible (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1992).
The Holy Bible NIV 2011 (Grand Rapids, MI: Biblica, 2011).
Zondervan NIV Study Bible (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2008).