What does the Bible tell us about God?
Here are some references to what is said about God in the Bible:
- When Moses stood at the burning bush and asked by what name should he call Him, God replied, I AM WHO I AM (Ex. 3:14) (Jehovah in Hebrew)
- I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End,” says the Lord, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.” (Rev 1:8)
- God is Spirit - the words to the Samaritan woman (John 4:24)
- The Lord is that Spirit (II Cor 3:17)
- God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all (1 John 1:5)
- God is love (I John 4:8, 16)
- Our God is a consuming fire (Heb 12:29)
The Fathers of the Orthodox Church use the expression, “He who is above all being” to describe God. Since we cannot know His essence we can only speak of some attributes of God. Saint Gregory the Theologian writes, “God is a sea of being, immeasurable and limitless.” Saint Basil the Great says, “God is the fullness of all qualities and perfections in their highest and infinite form.” Saint Ireanaeus of Lyons tells us, God “is simple and incomplex; He is entirely feeling, entirely spirit, entirely thought, entirely mind, entirely source of all good things.”
Attributes of God
We can only speak of the attributes of God, but not of His essence. Here are some of the attributes of God we know from what has been revealed to us. You need to loosen your rational mind and allow these attributes to resonate with your own essence. Meditate on them and allow your mind to embrace what is not totally rational. Knowing God is more like getting to know a new friend than learning a new subject. Remember that whatever you think God is, that He is not. God is not definable. The following are attributes, qualities or characteristics, but not definitions of God. They cannot limit God in any way.
God as Spirit
- God is Spirit (John 4:24)
- The Lord is a Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty (IICor 3:17)
God as Eternal
Of old You laid the foundation of the earth,
And the heavens are the work of Your hands.
They will perish, but You will endure;
Yes, they will all grow old like a garment;
Like a cloak You will change them,
And they will be changed.
But You are the same,
And Your years will have no end. (Ps. 102:25-27)
God as All Good
- The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in mercy. (Ps 103:8)
- God is love (1John 4:16)
God as All-Knowing
- And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account. (Heb 4:13)
- Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. (Ps 139:16)
- Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! (Rom 11:33)
God as All-Righteous
- He shall judge the world in righteousness (Ps 9:8)
- The Lord will render to each one according to his deeds, For there is no partiality with God. (Rom 2:6, 11)
God as Almighty - All-Powerful
- For He spoke, and it was done; He commanded, and it stood fast. (Ps 33:9)
- He is the one Who only does wondrous things! (Ps 72:18)
God as Omnipresent - Present everywhere at the same time
Where can I go from Your Spirit?
Or where can I flee from Your presence?
If I ascend into heaven, You are there;
If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there.
If I take the wings of the morning,
And dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
Even there Your hand shall lead me,
And Your right hand shall hold me. (Ps 139:7-10)
God as Unchangeable
In the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning. (James 1:17)
God as Self-Sufficing to Himself and All-Blessed
- In God is the sufficiency of all good things. Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out! Exclaims Apostle Paul, or of Him and through Him and to Him are all things. (Romans 11:33, 26)
- God has no need for anything, since He gives to all life, breath, and all things. (Acts 17:25)
- He is all blessed - according to the glorious gospel of the blessed God (1 Tim 1:11); which He will manifest in His own time, He who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings and Lord of lords. (1Tim 6:15)
God as Unity
There is no God but one. (1Cor 8:4)