Faith in God

  • Page 1
  • Page 2
  • Page 3
  • Page 4

 

To have faith in God, or the Bible, it must prove itself to be sure and certain. Can we prove God and the Bible to be sure and certain?  YES!  Let us start with God.

 Who is the God of the Old Testament?

  Who is the God of the New Testament?

 Who or what is "GOD"?

I needed to understand the concept of God. Understanding God was fundamental to my being set free. If I believed that the God of the Old Testament and the God of the New Testament were two different individuals, it would be easy to change "truth" from Old to New. This, I learned, was part of the confusion in today's worldly churches and organizations.

"GOD" I learned was not a person. The letters "G-O-D" are not the name of a person, entity or spirit. They are just letters. These letters represent a title. A friend of mine in the California Prison System is called an "inmate". That is his title. Inmate is not a person; it is not his name. Inmate simply is a title, a label, for easy identification of all 200,000 inmates in the California prison system.

When the California Department of Corrections wants to inform the prisoners of rules or changes that will affect them, it does not notify all of them by name. It uses the label, title, "inmate". That way, all the inmates know that the rules apply to them, all 200,000 individuals. Even though the one title applies to all 200,000 inmates, all 200,000 are not one. Yet all have the same privileges and responsibilities as each and every other "inmate". All are one, yet individuals.

If the prison wants to contact my friend, it uses his name and personal designation number. The same is true for "God". The Bible uses the term God when it speaks in general terms about those who have the God title. When it wants to get personal and identify which person with the "God" title it is talking about, then it names that specific individual.

 

Three distinct individuals have the God title. This is what confused the Jews. Yet, if they had been true students of the Old Testaments, they would have understood that there were three individuals with the God title.

Title God

Genesis 1:1 "In the beginning God... ". In the Hebrew language, the word we translate as God in this text is written in the plural form. It should be translated, "In the beginning (the) Gods... ". The Gods: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit were all involved in planning and creating the world. They also became involved in a very personal way in making man. "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness." Genesis 1:26. "The man has now become like one of us." Genesis 3:22.

"Us" and "our" are key words. They are plural, as is "God".  They worked as a team in building our planet. The Father acted like the Architect. Jesus was the Builder and the Holy Spirit was the Inspector.

At this point in a study, a Rabbi would know that there were more than just one individual with the God title. How many more were there? The Jews might not know the answer to that question. How many was not important. Only that there were more than one entity holding the God-title.

The problem that arises is when people misquote the Bible. How many times have you heard the phrase, "the Lord our God is one God"? The sad fact is, that is a misquote. The truth is found in Deuteronomy 6:4. "Hear, O Israel: the LORD our God, the LORD is one." This does not say that there is one God, only that the LORD is one. You see, the individual with the God title who is called "LORD" is only one person. He is not many. Only one person of the three God-title holders can be called "LORD". That person is Jesus Christ.

 In studying the book of Daniel, the Jews would have gained further understanding into this truth. In Daniel 7:13, 14 Daniel shows us the "Son of man" approaching the Ancient of Days. The son of man (Jesus) was given authority, sovereign power, dominion and most importantly, worship.

The Ten Commandments strictly forbids the worship of any other person or thing. Therefore the Jews, and us, would have known that these two individuals had the God title. They also knew from scripture that the Holy Spirit was also a holder of the God title. Put it all together and you have One, Two, Three individuals with the one "God" title.

 

So what was the problem with the Jews? Why did they have such a problem with Jesus being their God? To understand their thinking you need to put yourself into their shoes. In 605 BC Nebuchadnezzar, king of the Babylonian Empire, attacked Jerusalem. In three successive campaigns he wiped out Jerusalem and destroyed the temple of God. 2 Kings 21:1-18; 24:2-4; 25:1-21.

These calamities happened because the Jews were unfaithful to the God of heaven. They worshiped many “gods” including the god of Baal (the god of the sun: Sun-day worship), Asherah and Molech. When they returned from captivity to rebuild their nation, they learned their lesson: worship only the “one” God of heaven. But they made up their own “one-god” and again refused to listen to the truth of the Bible.

Are you as guilty of believing what you or your denomination want you to believe instead of believing what the Bible says?

The Jews worshiped the “one” god they made up. They became obsessed with the thought of “one”. From the Old Testament they knew the many names and designations of the God of the Old Testament. Some of these names were:

∗ YAHWEH (translated LORD in NIV): Genesis 2:4, 5, 7-9, 15, 18, 19, 21, 22.

∗ ROCK: Genesis 49:24; Psalm 18:2, 46; Isaiah 44:8.

∗ SHEPHERD: Genesis 49:24; Psalm 23:1; Ezekiel 34:11, 12.

∗ I AM: Exodus 3:14; Leviticus 18:2-6, 21, 30; 19:3, 4, 10, 12, 16, 18, 28, 31, 32, 34.

∗ THE WAY: Deuteronomy 1:31, 33; 4:7; 5:33; 8:6; 9:16; 10:12; 11:22, 28; 19:9; 26:17; 28:9.

∗ THE LIFE: Genesis 2:7; Proverbs 6:23; 8:35; Deuteronomy 30:20; 32:47.

∗ THE KING: Psalm 5:2; 10:16; Isaiah 44:6.

Now let’s take a look at Jesus and why He was such a problem to the JesusJews. Their God, Yahweh, lived in heaven. Jesus (means Yahweh saves) was walking among them. Jesus was allowing people to call him LORD and worship Him as only God could be worshipped.

The ROCK (Jesus, not Peter) was the foundation of the Jewish nation and religion. This Person claimed to be that Rock - Matthew 16:18; 1 Corinthians 10:4; 1 Peter 2:5-8.

Their Shepherd was the One who led them into the land of Canaan. This Person claimed to be the true Shepherd - John 10:11, 14.

The "I AM" split the Red Sea for the Israelites to pass through. This Jesus claimed to be the "I AM". John 8:12, 14-16, 18, 21, 23, 24, 28, 38, 46, 49, 50, 58.

The Way and the Life were references to the Ten Commandments and the Yahweh God who gave them. Jesus said, "I am the way and the truth and the life." John 14:6. The "son of man" of Daniel was given worship. Jesus claimed to be the son of man - Matthew 8:20. Yahweh was Israel’s King. Jesus let the people call Him "King" - John 12:12-15. Then He took the title Himself - John 18:37.

The Jews were not ignorant of this. They knew that He was their Yahweh God of the Old Testament. Zechariah, one of their own priests, had been told by the angel that his son, John the Baptist, would prepare the way for their Yahweh God. Luke 1:17, 76. The Jews tried to kill Jesus because "He was even calling God His own Father, making Himself equal with God." John 5:18. Months later they changed from "being equal" to "you a mere man, claim to be God." John 10:33. In fact, Micah 5:2 of the Old Testament told the Jews that the Yahweh of the Old Testament would be born.

 

If the Jews, who were well acquainted with the Old Testament, recognized that Jesus claimed to be the God of the Old Testament, then I needed to recognize the claim of Jesus as the Yahweh God of the Old Testament.

Related Text

Old Testament LORD
TITLE
New Testament LORD
PSALM 27:1
LIGHT
JOHN 8:12
ISAIAH 55:1
WATER
JOHN 7:37
PSALM 23:2
SHEPHERD
JOHN 10:11, 14
PSALM 18:2
ROCK
1 CORINTHIANS 10:4
PSALM 86:11
WAY & TRUTH
JOHN 14:6
PSALM 71:72
HOLY ONE
JOHN 6:69
PSALM 98:6
KING
JOHN 1:49
ISAIAH 44:6
FIRST & LAST
REVELATION 22:13
EXODUS 3:14
I AM
JOHN 8:58
EZEKIEL 28:1, 11, 20
WORD
JOHN 1:1, 14
EZEKIEL 37:5, 12
RESURRECTION
JOHN 11:25
DANIEL 7:13
SON OF MAN
LUKE 18:31
PSALM 100:3
CREATOR
JOHN 1:3
ISAIAH 43:11
SAVIOR
MATTIEW 1:21
DEUTERONOMY 30:20
LIFE
JOHN 1:4

 

This understanding of Jesus, as One with the God title of the Old Testament, helped me to trust Jesus as God. When He spoke in the Old Testament, as LORD, I knew that He, as Lord in the New Testament, would not change. My Jesus was the same in both Old Testament and New Testament and today. My faith now had a Rock, a firm foundation I could put my faith (trust) in. I knew that the Lord Almighty of the Old Testament was the same Lord Almighty who died on the cross for me. Isaiah 44:6, 8; 45:5, 18, 22; Revelation 1:8, 17, 18.

Now that I knew who Jesus was, I could worship Him. Thomas did. He said, "My Lord and my God." John 20:28. All the disciples worshipped Him. Matthew 28:17. Jesus accepted their worship without breaking the Ten Commandments. Why? He was a holder of the God title. Since He is a holder of the God title I knew He would not lie to me. Numbers 23:19; 1 Samuel 15:29; Malachi 3:6; Titus 1:2. Now I was ready to listen to what He had to say. Are you?

By the way, the Old Testament does tell us that the Yahweh of the Old Testament would be born. Read Micah 5:2

Thought Questions

Who is God in your life?

Do you know who Jesus really is?

In what way does this impact your life?

Will it make a difference in your life?

 

Related Text

LIGHT

OLD TESTAMENT LORD
PSALM 27:1
1  The LORD is my light and my salvation-- whom shall I fear?  The LORD is the stronghold of my life-- of whom shall I be afraid?

 NEW TESTAMENT LORD
JOHN 8:12
12  When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."

WATER

OLD TESTAMENT LORD
ISAIAH 55:1
1   "Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat!  Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost.

NEW TESTAMENT LORD
JOHN 7:37
37  On the last and greatest day of the Feast, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, "If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink.

ROCK

OLD TESTAMENT LORD
PSALM 18:2
2  The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge.  He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.

NEW TESTAMENT LORD
1 CORINTHIANS 10:4
4  and drank the same spiritual drink; for they drank from the spiritual rock that accompanied them, and that rock was Christ.

SHEPHERD

OLD TESTAMENT LORD
PSALM 23:1

  1. The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want.

NEW TESTAMENT LORD
JOHN 10:11-14
11  "I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12  The hired hand is not the shepherd who owns the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. 13  The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep.  14  "I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me--

WAY & TRUTH

OLD TESTAMENT LORD
PSALM 86:11
11 Teach me your way, O LORD, and I will walk in your truth; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name.

NEW TESTAMENT LORD
JOHN 14:6
6  Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

HOLY ONE

OLD TESTAMENT LORD
PSALM 71:22
22  I will praise you with the harp for your faithfulness, O my God; I will sing praise to you with the lyre, O Holy One of Israel.

NEW TESTAMENT LORD
JOHN 6:69
69  We believe and know that you are the Holy One of God."

KING

OLD TESTAMENT LORD
PSALM 98:6
6 with trumpets and the blast of the ram's horn-- shout for joy before the LORD, the King.

NEW TESTAMENT LORD
JOHN 1:49
49 Then Nathanael declared, "Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the King of Israel."

I AM

OLD TESTAMENT LORD
EXODUS 3:14
14 God said to Moses, "I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: `I AM has sent me to you.' "

NEW TESTAMENT LORD
JOHN 8:58
58  "I tell you the truth," Jesus answered, "before Abraham was born, I am!"

WORD

OLD TESTAMENT LORD
EZ. 28:1,11, 20
1  The word of the LORD came to me:...
11  The word of the LORD came to me:...
20  The word of the LORD came to me:

NEW TESTAMENT LORD
JOHN 1:1, 14
1  In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God....  14  The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

FIRST & LAST

OLD TESTAMENT LORD
ISAIAH 44:6
6  "This is what the LORD says Israel's King and Redeemer, the LORD Almighty: I am the first and I am the last; apart from me there is no God.

NEW TESTAMENT LORD
REV. 22:13
13  I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.

RESURRECTION

OLD TESTAMENT LORD
EZ. 37:5, 12
5  This is what the Sovereign LORD says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.
12  Therefore prophesy and say to them: `This is what the Sovereign LORD says: O my people, I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them; I will bring you back to the land of Israel.

NEW TESTAMENT LORD
JOHN 11:25
1  In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God....  14  The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

SON OF MAN

OLD TESTAMENT LORD
DANIEL 7:13
13  "In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence....

NEW TESTAMENT LORD
LUKE 18:31
31  Jesus took the Twelve aside and told them, "We are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written by the prophets about the Son of Man will be fulfilled.

CREATOR

OLD TESTAMENT LORD
PSALM 100:3
3  Know that the LORD is God.  It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.

NEW TESTAMENT LORD
JOHN 1:3
3  Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.

SAVIOR

OLD TESTAMENT LORD
ISAIAH 43:11
11  I, even I, am the LORD, and apart from me there is no savior.

NEW TESTAMENT LORD
MATT. 1:21
21  She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins."

LIFE

DEUT. 30:20
20  and that you may love the LORD your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him. For the LORD is your life, and he will give you many years in the land he swore to give to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
32:47   They are not just idle words for you--they are your life. By them you will live long in the land you are crossing the Jordan to possess."

NEW TESTAMENT LORD
JOHN 1:4
4  In him was life, and that life was the light of men.