Statistics show that 95% of people in the world believe in a god, god’s or a higher power. If 95% of the world believes in god, the question we should be asking is not, “Do you believe in God?” The question is “Which god do you believe in?” There are a million different gods; “which god do you believe in?” Is your god a benevolent god? Non-judgmental? Will he accept everyone into His heaven? Or is he mean; an evil dictator ready to zap anyone who falls out of line. Is your god unreachable? Did he create everything then leave us on our own? Does your god show up in or through your deceased ancestors or does he take on the form of inanimate objects or animals? Some may say that god is just a legend or fable to give us hope and live good lives. And some may say that god is whatever you want him (or her) to be. There are a million different ways to create a god in our minds. Chances are high that many people sitting in churches every week, do not know the one true God of the Bible. Many believe He exists, but do they understand the depths of His character, his limitless power and infinite wisdom? Unless we are in His word, learning about Him and experiencing Him, who’s to say we even know Him? Knowing the true God of the Bible is our first Pillar.
The Bible never mentions the origin of God. The opening lines of the Bible just say, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” (Gen 1:1). It doesn’t go into any explanation of the origins of God, rather, the fact of the presence of God is a given. When God revealed Himself to Moses, He called Himself “I AM” (Exodus 3:14-15). “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.’” God also said to Moses, “Say to the Israelites, ‘The Lord, the God of your fathers —the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob —has sent me to you.’ “This is my name forever, the name you shall call me from generation to generation.” This description of Himself reveals His eternal characteristics. God is always here, always in the present, always existing in an eternal now; whether ten-thousand years ago, today, tomorrow or ten-thousand years from now… “I AM”! Our minds cannot understand the extent of this claim since everything we know of has a beginning and an end. But that’s how God can be the God of our ancestors as well as our God, because He is eternal. And that’s why Jesus made the claim, “Before Abraham was, I AM.” And He goes on to say, after His crucifixion and resurrection, “Surely I will be with you always until the end of the age.” (Jn 8:58; Mt 28:20). A word that best describes the eternal, self-originating and self-sufficiency of God is “Aseity.” This word describes the qualities of not needing anything other than itself to exist. God is self-existing and eternal. He doesn’t need anything from man or any part of creation to exist. He always was, is, and always will be God. He is the Great I AM.
“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” Genesis 1:1. The word Genesis means beginnings or origins. Many questions can be answered by going back to the beginning to see how things came about. Whether we’re questioning, the existence of the universe, trees, mountains, plants, animals, humans, sin, murder, lust, stealing, etc. Almost any question can somehow be answered by going back to the beginning of creation. Genesis chapters 1 and 2 give us the creation account. Then everything else follows from there. That’s the uniqueness of the Bible. Only the Bible gives us details of how everything came about and why it was created. Only the Bible gives us the details of who created it and when. Did you know you can build a timeline back to Adam through the detailed historical accounts found in the Bible? That’s because the Biblical historical accounts are true and are proven by science and archaeology, as well as our global historical accounts of humanity. God created everything and He wants us to know how, why, when and who created it. As Paul tells us in Romans 1:20, “For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.”
God’s holiness is where most people misunderstand who God is. Most people know that God is a God of love. He is powerful, created everything, always existed, is in control of everything, but do they understand His holiness? Holy means pure, perfect, unblemished. God is perfect and pure in all His ways. There is no flaw in Him. Adam and Eve were created perfect and pure. They walked with God. The whole earth was created perfect and pure, there was no sin. Once Adam and Eve disobeyed God by eating the forbidden fruit (Gen 3), sin entered into creation. This is extremely important to understand. That one act of disobedience marred the perfection of all creation. Sin separates us from God. Because God is holy, perfect and pure we cannot have a relationship with God. As a result of that one act of disobedience to God, Adam and Eve were kicked out of the garden of Eden, which represents perfection, eternal life and a continual relationship with God. So that perfect relationship was severed; we now face death and eternity without God. Sin’s curse has affected all who enter into this fallen world, which includes you and me and all humanity; no one is exempt, we are all separated from our holy God. We must remember that God didn’t stop loving Adam and Eve and out of hate cast them out. No, it’s because God could no longer fellowship with imperfect beings that the relationship was broken. The Bible tells us that “we have all sinned and fall short of God’s glorious standard” (Ro 3:23). And the “wage of sin is death” (Ro 6:23). God CANNOT be with us since we are impure. There is no connection between pure and impure. The two cannot mix. So God cannot simply allow everyone into heaven or anyone for that matter unless something is done about our sin problem. Again, it's not because a lack of love on God's part but it is because of our sinful (impure) state. Enter in Jesus! “For God so loved the world that He gave His One and only Son, that whoever believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.” (Jn 3:16). We were helpless and bound for hell, but God, IN LOVE, steps in and provides a way. Jesus is the way; the ONLY way for the forgiveness of sins and the restoration of a perfect relationship with a Holy God. In the fourth Pillar we will cover the topic of Salvation and how our relationship can be restored with the One and only Eternal, All-powerful and Holy God.