What is God like?

What is God like? To answer this question, we must first say that God is not like anyone or anything. Some theologians have described our God as “other.” That’s true, but a rather broad description, isn’t it? A.W. Tozer, one of the great spiritual minds of the 20th century, wrote this: “What comes to mind when we think about God is the most important thing about us. The history of mankind will probably show that no people has even risen above its religion, and man’s spiritual history will positively demonstrate that no religion has ever been greater than its idea of God. “

Fortunately for us, our Creator is a relational God and He desires not only to know us, but also to be known by us. He has revealed to us His character, or attributes, through His creation, through the person of Jesus, and through His written word. Perhaps the most vivid and impressionable picture we can draw about God is how He is revealed in the New Testament writings recording the life of Jesus, the “God-man.” Here we see what God was like when He actually walked among us and related to humankind face to face. This is the same God we are drawn to and presently relate to from a distance. God, in His character, does not change. He is immutable. While Hebrews 13:8 assures us that “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever,” 2 Tim. 2:13 reminds us that God remains faithful to us regardless of our faithfulness. What does God’s constant character mean to you in your ever changing world? Does it give you confidence? Lessen your fears? His character is consistent and reliable, though not always “predictable” in the details regarding our circumstances.

God is patient. He demonstrates His patience towards believers and non-believers. That’s a good thing for all of us. Psalm 103:8 states “The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.” That’s a pretty valuable description of His relationship to followers, isn’t it?” Verse 10 is good news to all saying “He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities” just as 2 Peter 3:9 speaks to those who do not yet know Christ because He wants to give them the opportunity to come into relationship with Him . “The Lord is not slow in keeping His promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.”  How does it make you feel knowing that God is patient with you? Maybe even more important, how would a greater appreciation of God’s patience enable you to be patient with yourself, with others (both believers and not yet believers), and with your circumstances?

Knowing God is essential. Knowing God accurately through His personal revelation will give us a better appreciation of Him as well as help us cut through some of the speculations we make about Him and our faulty expectations of Him which are not based on His word. He wants that for us, wouldn’t you agree? An excellent book by Tozer that expands on these attributes is the classic, The Knowledge of the Holy. I strongly recommend you get a copy and use it as a devotional prompt. Think About It.