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Would the real God please stand up?

How many times have you asked yourself questions about God? Who is God? What is He like? How can we expect Him to act?

These are questions people have been asking for thousands of years. You've probably asked them yourself. The answers you come up with will profoundly affect your relationship with God and the quality of your life.

As I talk to believers around the country, it's clear that many have only vague and often contradictory notions of who God is. Perhaps you feel that way from time to time.

Maybe you've heard at times that God is gentle and kind, and at other times that He's fierce and angry. Perhaps you've heard someone say that God took their baby from them in order to test them or make them a better person.

If you're confused about who God really is, or if you'd just like to know Him better, I have good news for you today. God tells you exactly who He is and what He's like - in the Bible.

When forming opinions of someone, it's very easy to be influenced by what other people say about them.

I remember one occasion in which I heard several negative reports about a person and I let those reports color my view of him. Later, when I got to know him, I discovered he was not at all the person I thought he was.

I learned something from that experience. One of the best ways to learn who someone is, is to discover who they are not. And as we search the scriptures, we find a significant number of places in which God reveals Himself by telling us who He isn't.

Who God is Not
One of the most important things that you can ever know about God is found in Numbers 23:19: "God is not a man, that he should lie…."

Did you catch that? God cannot and will not lie. Everything He has ever said or ever will say is the truth. That's why you can trust the Bible.

According to 2 Timothy 3:16, all scripture is inspired by God (literally, God-breathed). You can stake your life on God's Word being true.

Until you consider the Bible to be absolute truth, you can never really know God. Until you make it the final authority in your life, you will never experience the fullness of life that He wants to bring to you. A full, personal relationship with God begins with recognizing the Bible as a true revelation of who He is and how we relate to Him.

I frequently hear sincere, but misguided Christians say, "Well, Pastor Mac, I believe Jesus was the Son of God, but I don't really believe some of that other stuff. For example, I don't think miracles are for today."

You can't pick and choose what parts of the Bible you're going to believe. When you try, you invalidate the very basis of the faith you profess. Furthermore, if you are believing something that did not originate in the Bible, and there's only one other possible source for that concept - the mind of some person.

Don't hang your eternal destiny on what some man thinks.

The Truth of Christianity
One important difference between Christianity and all other world religions and philosophies is that they invariably originated with a single individual. Confucius, Buddha, Mohammed, Joseph Smith, Mary Baker Eddy, and L. Ron Hubbard - all of these individuals were the sole source of teaching behind their respective religious movements.

The Bible, on the other hand, came by the Holy Spirit through dozens of different writers over the span of thousands of years. And yet the Bible speaks with a single voice, delivers a consistent message and paints a perfect picture of God's plan for man.

The Bible is not the product of man. That's why it must be considered absolute, foundational truth for your life. Until you receive it as such and make it final authority in your life, you will never truly know God. You will never experience the fullness of life He wants to bring you.

Most of us understand the need for truth in the physical or natural realm. No one wants to make decisions that are based on false information. How would you like to cross a bridge designed by an engineer who believed two plus two equals five? How would you like to be treated by a doctor that believed germs were good for you?

When it comes to natural things, we want to make sure we are basing our decisions on accurate assumptions and truth. We should demand no less when it comes to the eternal things of the spirit. The only way to do that is to accept the Bible for what it claims to be - a supernaturally written, divinely inspired, 100 percent accurate revelation of God's character and will.

Second Timothy 3:16 says it this way:
All scripture is given by inspiration of God [lit. God-breathed], and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.
Knowing God begins with believing, accepting, and basing your life on the truth of His Word. That's easy to do once you understand that "God is not a man that He should lie."

Source: Who God Is Not by Mac Hammond
Excerpt permission granted by Mac Hammond Ministries

Author Biography

Mac Hammond
Web site: Mac Hammond
 
Mac Hammond is senior pastor of Living Word Christian Center, a large and growing church in Brooklyn Park (a suburb of Minneapolis), Minnesota. He is the host of the Winner’s Minute, which is seen locally in the Minneapolis area and can also be viewed at winnersminute.com. He is also the host of the Winner’s Way broadcast and author of several internationally distributed books. Mac is broadly acclaimed for his ability to apply the principles of the Bible to practical situations and the challenges of daily living.
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