Several years ago I spoke in a church on the question: how do you view God? Having grown up in the church and living around the Christian community, I have come across many viewpoints on how people view and understand the triune God. Some base their views on experience, others on what they were taught over the years, yet others hang on to their churches teachings and traditions. So my question to you is: how do YOU view God?
According to the Scriptures our view of God should be based on our personal relationship with God himself. Jesus expresses it this way: "And this is eternal life, that they may know Thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom Thou hast sent." (John 17:3; NASB) To know God truly and have a world and life view of him, we must first be, as Jesus states in John chapter 3, "born again", giving us eternal life and a permanent connection through God sharing his nature within us. Really! His nature! How does that work? God's nature is provided through the permanent indwelling of the Holy Spirit. The Apostle Peter states it this way in 2 Peter 1:3-4:
"Seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. For by these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, in order that by them you might become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by lust." (NASB)
Because of God's nature in us, we are told in Romans 12:1-2: I urge you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect. (NASB) These statements co-exist with God the Father's commandment found in Leviticus 20:7 and reaffirmed for us in 1 Peter 1:16: "because it is written, 'You shall be holy, for I am holy.'" (NASB) As I think through these concepts, I personally am overwhelmed with awe and wonderment as I ask the question: do I actually have the power through God's nature to be obedient to the Father through Christ? Thus, have the ability to be victorious over the flesh in this life? Yes!!! This is exactly what the Apostle Paul is talking about in Romans Chapter 8 and as Jesus stated in John 14:6, the Holy Spirit that brings this ability to us is forever!
So in light of these few concepts from the Scriptures, how should we view God? Before answering that question for yourself, let me encourage you to search the Scriptures for God and see what you can discover on a daily basis. Remember: Jesus' prayer to the Father, on behalf of his people, was: "Sanctify them in the truth; Thy word is truth." (John 17:17; NASB) From Jesus perspective, I believe our view should come through the Scriptures. So based on Jesus' prayer, let me encourage you to seek your view of God, not from church traditions or someone's personal belief of who God is, but from the whole of the Scriptures by honoring 2 Timothy 2:15: "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth." (KJV)
Reid Ashbaucher was born in the United States, and holds a B.A. degree in Comprehensive Bible an M.A. degree in Christian Theology, and is the author of "Made in the Image of God". Permission to reprint article is granted. http://booksite.rcetc.com