What is God like?

The Bible gives us a full revelation of what God is like. There are hundreds of things we could say about God as revealed in the Bible, but here are four to focus on:

First, the Bible declares God to be Spirit. In the Gospel of John, Jesus is talking to a woman at the well. He makes a straightforward statement about God when He says simply, “God is Spirit.” You might envision a sort of cloudy vapor, but that is not a picture of God. You can find out what Spirit is from these words of Christ after His resurrection: “Handle Me and see, for a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see I have” (Luke 24:39, NKJV). Spirit is the opposite of body, something that is not limited by a body.

The Bible declares that God is Spirit, that He is not limited to body, shape, force or boundaries. He is absolutely immeasurable and unfathomable to eyes that are limited to physical things. He can be everywhere at the same time. He has unlimited wisdom, power, love and mercy.

The Bible teaches that there was no time when God did not exist. He is eternal—He has no beginning or end—and unchanging—He is the same today and forever.

Second, the Bible reveals God as a Person. Everywhere in the Bible we read: “God loves;” “God says;” “God does.” Everything that we attribute to a person is attributed to God. A person is one who feels, thinks, wishes, desires and has all the expressions of a personality. God is not bound by a body, but He is a person. He feels, thinks, loves and forgives.

Third, the Bible declares that God is a holy and righteous Being. From Genesis to Revelation, God reveals Himself as a holy God. He is perfect in every detail. He is too holy to endure sinful living because He is a good, perfect God.

If we could ever get a vision of God’s majestic righteousness, what a tremendous difference it would make in the way our nations live. If we could once see the appalling difference that separates our unrighteousness from God’s perfect righteousness, it would change our way of living immediately. We all fall short of God’s glory (Romans 3:23).

The Scripture declares God to be Light in whom there is “no darkness at all” (1 John 1:5). It is impossible to understand the Bible unless you have a clear understanding of the holiness of God. His holiness determines all His other attributes.

Because God is holy, a gap exists between God and us, the sinners. The Scripture says, “your iniquities have separated you from your God; And your sins have hidden His face from you, So that He will not hear” (Isaiah 59:2, NKJV). Not only is the sinner separated from God, but God is separated from the sinner. Because God is holy, He can have nothing to do with sin.

Before sin came into the world, humanity and God had fellowship with each other. Now that fellowship is broken, and it is impossible for a sinner to have any contact with God unless it’s through Jesus Christ. People do not possess, nor can they acquire, the sinlessness that is necessary to access God. Christ, however, came to make such access possible.

Fourth, God is love. Many people have misunderstood that part of God’s nature. The fact that God is love does not mean that everything is sweet, beautiful and happy and that God’s love could not possibly allow punishment for sin.

God’s holiness demands that all sin be punished, but God’s love provided a plan of redemption and salvation for sinful people. It was the love of God that sent Jesus Christ to the cross: “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16).

No matter what sin you have committed, no matter how dirty, shameful or terrible it may be, God loves you. But it is up to you to believe in Jesus Christ, ask forgiveness for your sins and receive His gift of eternal life.

Some people might say: “I still can’t understand God. Therefore, I can’t receive Him.” I can’t understand how a black cow can eat green grass and produce white milk, but I drink milk. I don’t refuse to turn on my radio because I can’t understand how it works. Every day, we do thousands of things that we don’t fully understand.

It is impossible for limited human minds to understand God completely. That’s where faith comes in. By faith, I receive His plan for my redemption. I trust Christ as my Savior.

If you don’t believe we have a sufficient revelation that answers the question of what God is like, you will never be satisfied because all discussion outside of the Bible—God’s Word—is speculative. Every other idea about God is the product of the imagination or reasoning of a mere man; your guess is as good as anyone else’s.


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