In our current series we’ve been going through an old list of questions and answers contained in the Westminster Larger Catechism published in 1648. This week I want to start answering the question, ‘What is God?’ This week we’ll only look at five things that God is according to the Bible.
Firstly God is a Spirit. Jesus teaches this to the Samaritan woman: ‘God is spirit’ (John 4:24). But what does that mean? It means God doesn’t have a physical body like humans. God doesn’t have an actual heart, ear, foot or arm. So when God speaks of himself having such body parts, God is using a human’s knowledge of the body to try and help them understand something about him. The Bible is not suggesting that God is anything other than a spirit.
Secondly the Bible teaches us that God is infinite. Zophar rightly says to Job: ‘Can you fathom the mysteries of God? Can you probe the limits of the Almighty? They are higher than the heavens above–what can you do? They are deeper than the depths below–what can you know? Their measure is longer than the earth and wider than the sea’ (Job 11:7-9). God is limitless.
Thirdly God is glorious. Stephen says of God: ‘The God of glory appeared to our father Abraham while he was still in Mesopotamia, before he lived in Harran’ (Acts 7:2). What does it mean to be glorious? Glory means to be worthy of honour. And it doesn’t take much reading about the God described in the Bible to realise that he is indeed worthy of all glory, as the elders say in heaven: ‘You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being’ (Revelation 4:11).
Fourthly God is blessed. Paul describes God to Timothy with the following words: ‘God, the blessed and only Ruler, the King of kings and Lord of lords’ (1 Timothy 6:15). What does it mean to be blessed? To be blessed usually has the idea of being praiseworthy and happily content. Which God is indeed!
Fifthly God is perfect. Jesus says: ‘Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect’ (Matthew 5:48). This means that God has no flaws, no problems, makes no mistakes.
So do you recognise that God is a Spirit, infinite, glorious, blessed and perfect? Or do you sinfully imagine God to be something he is not?