I recently visited my mother’s home and had the chance to spend some time with loved ones. We sat around and partook in the usual American family tradition – turning on the television and try to make sense of the chaos that is happening in our present world. In the wake of all the catastrophe, and damage done by Hurricane Harvey, and Hurricane Irma, there was a program airing. It called for us fellow Americans to join in aiding each other in bringing relief to those who have suffered tragedy and loss. It was a call to help your fellow man.
Besides the barrage of celebrities taking phone calls, and musical exerts that took place every 5 minutes, what unsettled me the most about this program was a portion that featured a well-known music artist, a prominent Pastor, a Jewish Rabbi, and Islamic/Muslim Leader. I know this sounds like the beginning of a corny joke, but hang in there with me. They proceeded to bow their heads, all together in unison, and the Pastor lead them in a prayer to God and called themselves, “the faith community”. There was an alarming disturbance in my inner man as soon as these men finished their prayer, and I hope in some sense, you can understand why I was so unsettled by this.
God Himself is Who He is, though many people have very wrong views of Who He is. I can tell you all day who someone is, but unless you come to know that person yourself, can you truly say you know them for who they are? The revelation of a person is given by the characteristics of who they are. So, when we say, “Who is God?”, we must be able to have a solid, foundational answer, because many will fill in the blanks of their own ideas. We who take the Bible as infallible truth know there is only one God, and this God we speak of is exactly Who He reveals Himself to be. In His Word, He leaves very little room for misinterpretation of Who He is. God is Who He is. (Exodus 3:14). These men from the television program may have been all bowing their head in prayer, but rest assured, they all had very different ideas of who they were praying to.
Jesus is God. Period.
There is a stark contrast many times to who or what people consider “God” in our society. Many times, in conversations with those who acknowledge a sovereign being or not, the mention of God does little to disturb and little to offend. It is not until you take the generalization and make it specific that the offense is taken, and the act of challenging one’s worldview comes into play. Make no mistake about it, sisters – once you take the name of Christ and address Him as God, the idea of “God” narrows down to a specific Person and a specific characteristic. Christ said He and the Father are One. (John 10:30) He identifies Himself as God many times in scripture, and affirms this without any hesitation. Jesus even warned the Jews that unless they believed He is God, they would die in their sins. (John 8:24) The same goes for you and I, and all who exist in this world. This is not an area up for compromise or to waver on. Jesus is God, whether you recognize this now or later.
Lord of All.
Jesus is God and Jesus is Lord of all. And all is not limited to just the believer. He is Lord over the Christians, the Jews, the Muslims, the Atheists, the Agnostics. This may sound like Universalism but what I mean is far from it. Their acknowledgement of Him, or lack thereof, as Sovereign God and Ruler does not change Who He is nor make Him any less of the One Who created all things and sustains all things. In fact, scriptures tell us clearly that one day, all, not some, but ALL will bow a knee to Christ and acknowledge Him as Lord. None is exempt from recognizing Him for Who He is – they will either bow now, or they will later. (Romans 14:11, Philippians 2:11). This is not a relative truth – this is concrete.
If I could ask those men on the television just one question, that question would be, ‘Which God are you praying to?” I know that their answers would very. Unless one knows God for Who He is, in by the finished work in the Person of Christ, born again by the Person of the Holy Spirit, then they do not know God. They know an idol, and God is clear – His rightful name and glory will not be shared with anyone but Himself (Isaiah, 42:8 , Isaiah 43:11).