The Greatness of the eternal God

When looking around us we can see how man is nothing against the powers of nature. Man also tries to create a lot of things, but never can succeed to create such marvellous things as the divine Originator of all things.

In the Book of books, the Bestseller of all times, we can get an image of that divine Creator and how He looks at the world and wants His creatures to come close to Him. In that great masterwork there is a constant theme going on.

The Greatness of God

The sheer supremacy of God and the glory which should be ascribed to Him by puny mankind is a constant theme throughout Scripture. It was well expressed by David, King of Israel:

“Blessed be thou, 0 LORD, the God of Israel our Father, for ever and ever. Thine, 0 LORD, is the greatness: and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty, for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is thine; thine is the kingdom, 0 LORD, and thou art exalted as head above all” (1 Chronicles 29:10,11).

Greatness … power … glory … victory … majesty … all in heaven and earth … kingdom … exalted … head over all. We do well to read slowly through these terms to appreciate David’s profound sense of the majestic supremacy of God. It was shared by the Apostle Paul, as we have seen.

This deep conviction of God’s supreme majesty is shared by all the faithful of Old Testament times. Now we should not neglect the Old Testament, for in it are revealed the foundations of the character of God, basic truths about Him which are confirmed and expanded in the New Testament. Furthermore it was to Israel that was granted the great revelation of God’s supremacy over all the gods of mankind in the stirring events of their Exodus from Egypt. The Israelites saw the effects of the plagues upon the Egyptians and witnessed their own deliverance at the crossing of the Red Sea. Moses put it very strikingly 40 years later:

“For ask now of the days that are past … whether there hath been any such thing as this great thing is? … Did ever people hear the voice of God speaking out of the midst of the fire, as thou hast heard, and live? Or hath God assayed to go and take him a nation from the midst of another nation, by trials (R.V. margin), by signs, and by wonders … according to all that the LORD your God did for you in Egypt before your eyes?” (Deuteronomy 4:32-34).

Upon this open demonstration of His power and salvation on their behalf, God based His appeal for their service towards Him:

“Ye have seen what I did unto the Egyptians, and how I bare you on eagles’ wings, and brought you unto myself. Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar (special) treasure unto me from among all peoples … ” (Exodus 19:4,5).

Notice particularly here that God’s appeal for faith in Himself was solidly based not upon His moral excellence (of which He would give plenty of evidence later on), but upon the demonstration of His supremacy over the greatest pagan system on earth at the time (the Egyptian). This is reinforced when God reveals through Moses His Law for Israel, for the very first clause begins:

“I am the LORD thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage” (Exodus 20:2).

Then follow the Ten Commandments, the kernel of God’s Law for them.

The authority comes first; the moral teaching follows. It is impossible to dispense with this order. Strikingly, Jesus adopts the same position. The words he spoke, he said, were not his own, but his Father’s. In prayer to God, he addresses Him as

“Father, Lord of heaven and earth” (Matthew 11:25).

Though God was a Father to all who sought Him, yet He remained “Lord of heaven and earth”. Unhappily it has to be said that these priorities have been widely ignored in our days, even by many who would regard themselves as followers of Jesus Christ.

Eternal or dying one

In our world we can find lots of people who made Jesus Christ into their god. They seem to ignore many writings in the Holy Scriptures and seem to forget that God has no birth and can not die.

The disciples of Christ also knew very well that there is only One True God and with Jesus worshipped that Only One True God, the God of Israel.

The most explicit descriptions concerning that one and only one Most High Supreme eternal God in the New Testament are from the Apostle Paul:

“Now unto the King eternal, incorruptible, invisible, the only God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen” (1 Timothy 1:17, R.V.).

“The blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords: who only hath immortality, dwelling in light unapproachable; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power eternal. Amen” (1 Timothy 6:16, R.V.).

It is remarkable that in these descriptions the two most explicit terms about God’s nature are expressed as negatives. He is “incorruptible” (not corrupting) and “immortal” (not dying). God has a “nature” the direct opposite of “human flesh“. So He is “eternal”, literally “of the ages” (R.V. margin). It is significant that Paul uses this term three times in one verse: “… to the King eternal (of the ages) … be glory for ever and ever” (unto the ages of the ages — R.V. margin). How impressed he must have been with the thought of the everlasting nature of God.

Jesus Christ (whose real name was Jeshua) was born, had to learn everything and went around telling about his heavenly Father, without Him he could not do anything. As the sent one from God he wanted people to show the way to God. By the works Jesus did and by what people could see in nature they had to see not only the greatness of Jehovah God, but also the uniqueness of this God.

The Uniqueness of God

From his recital of all God’s great works on behalf of His people, Moses drew the following conclusion:

“Know therefore this day, and consider it in thine heart, that the LORD he is God in heaven above, and upon the earth beneath: there is none else” (Deuteronomy 4:39).

This was a vital affirmation in a world of a multitude of pagan gods. It remained vital all through the centuries of Israel’s persistent neglect of the God who had delivered them. In His frequent reminders through the prophets that it was He who had delivered them from the oppression of Egypt, He declares that He is God alone:

“I am the Lord, and there is none else; there is no God beside me” (Isaiah 45:5).

In the New Testament the Apostle Paul recognises the existence of many cults and pagan gods; yet to the believers in Christ these idols are nothing:

“We know that an idol is nothing in the world, and that there is none other God but one. For though there be that are called gods … yet to us there is one God, the Father, of whom are all things … and one Lord, Jesus Christ” (1 Corinthians 8:4-6).

And in writing to the Ephesians Paul says:

“There is one body … one Spirit … one hope … one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all … ” (4:4-6).

This is a resounding declaration of the unity of the various aspects of the true Christian faith, all depending on the “one God”.

 

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Preceding

Today’s thought “nonsense surrounding the many gods” (July 28)

Religion power and authority for mankind

God’s Self-Revelation

Next: The real God

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Additional reading

  1. Where to learn the truth
  2. The Bible her revealing concerning God
  3. This month’s survey question: Does God Exist?
  4. The true light in recorded words
  5. Challenging claim 1 Whose word
  6. Eternal Word that tells everything
  7. The World framed by the Word of God
  8. The Word being a quality or aspect of God Himself
  9. Sayings around God
  10. Attributes of God
  11. One God the Father, a compendium of essays
  12. Some one or something to fear #6 Faith in the Most High
  13. I can’t believe that … (4) God’s word would be so violent
  14. An anarchistic reading of the Bible (2)—Creation and what follows
  15. “Before” and “after” the Big Bang
  16. Different principle about the origin and beginning of everything
  17. Cosmos creator and human destiny
  18. Jesus the “God-Man”: Really?
  19. Omniscient God opposite a not knowing Jesus
  20. Without God no purpose, no goal, no hope
  21. Live by Faith

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Related

  1. Piper: The impact of God’s awesome reality doesn’t hit us and hold us and shape us unless we become still
  2. To See More of Our God – Psalm 119:16
  3. “Conforming to God’s Holiness” from Ligonier Ministries of RC Sproul
  4. He Is Who He Says He Is.

44 thoughts on “The Greatness of the eternal God

  1. Interestingly and true to form, Christianity bases its enduring faith on something that never happened. 2.4 million Israelites in the desert at Kadesh Barnea for forty years and there is not even a pottery shard. We’re looking for a settlement the size of Houston Texas…No aqueducts, no sanitation, no buildings, no ruins, no evidence…And Egyptians didn’t build out of brick. During the time of Arkhenaten there was a small village of brick, but nothing of the size or scale of 2million plus people. And 800 years off the mark when Israel was supposed to be there. It’s so concerning that the Jews have dismissed the exodus as fable and changed the name of the primary foundation for biblical studies to “Near Eastern Studies”. The greatness of god is a fable. A myth. It’s not even controversial.

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