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Understanding who God is has the potential to completely shift your life, your beliefs, and the way you view yourself and the world.  There’s a lot to say about who God is… and it’s all such good news.  But for today, as we dig into understanding who God is, we’re going to focus on these 5 truths about who God is:

  1. Creator
  2. Father
  3. Redeemer
  4. Sanctifier
  5. King


Understanding who God is can get really complex.  We could talk about the Trinity, and omnipotence, and omniscience, and omnipresence… but this is not the post that’s going to dig into all that.

Today, were looking at understanding God better, answering the question of who he is, and what that means for us.

1. Understanding who God is – CREATOR

“In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” – Genesis 1:1

God is creator.  That is the opening line of the Bible, and what an epic line it is.  After that line, the writer of Genesis (likely Moses) then goes on to describe all the beautiful stages of creation.  And after each one, God observes that his creation is VERY good.

Maybe I’m a bit of a nerd(OK, I admit I am), but the deeper I dig into science and art, the more appreciation I have for God as creator.

Let’s start with science.understanding-who-god-is-creator-father-redeemer-sanctifier-king

God, the master scientist

When we’re understanding who God is, it’s helpful to see him as a scientist.  He literally caused the universe to exist (and causes it to continue to exist) by the word of his power.

We live in a universe that continues to expand out, which points to the fact that it did indeed have a beginning.  And the Kalam cosmological argument tells us that “anything that begins to exist has a cause.”

What else could that cause possibly be?  Check out this quote from Stephen C. Meyer as found in the book The Case for a Creator by Lee Strobel:

“Take the expansion rate of the universe, which is fine-tuned to one part in a trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion. That is, if it were changed by one part in either direction–a little faster, a little slower–we could not have a universe that would be capable of supporting life.” – Stephen C. Meyer

That’s just the fine-tuning of the expansion rate of the universe… There’s so much more to consider, like the fine tuning of gravity.  As I said, this is a simple post… and I’m no scientist.  But what an amazing scientist our creator is.

As we look at understanding who God is, we can see that he is intelligent and creative.  He uses patterns and order… God is our Creator.

God, the master artist

One of my favorite things to do is to go for a walk early in the morning, before the world gets busy.  I love the stillness and beauty of the world.

The sound of the birds, the multitude of color and smells, the huge expanse of sky… and have you ever noticed that there’s about a bajillion different shades of green?

Whether you’re staring at the immensity of the ocean, the majesty of a mountain, or the far-reaching beauty of a prairie, God the Creator’s fingerprints are all over it.

creation-lives-breathes-and-movesNow, I don’t know about you, but I’m not much of an artist.  While I’d love to be able to wield a paintbrush with great skill, it’s just not in my natural skill set.  But that being said, even the greatest artist in history cannot create like God.

The best artist can only create a dim reflection of what God creates.  An artist cannot make his creation live and breathe and move like God’s creation.

But God, in his generosity, gave people, who he made in his image a little bit of his artistic and scientific passion.  He gave us the drive and the ability to create and to investigate.  And he did it for his glory.

As we try to understand who God is, we can be assured that God is our Creator, and he’s the master artist.

2. Understanding who God is – The Father

In the account of Adam and Eve’s (and ultimately, all of humanity’s) fall in Genesis 3, we hear a story that’s reminiscent of a parent-child relationship.  Mama’s, I know you’ll hear me on this one.

RELATED POST: What does God think of me?

We see Adam and Eve hiding in the garden, because they KNOW they have been disobedient.  Then, we hear Adam and Eve making excuses and throwing blame… and we see God (the Father) listening, questioning… and all along knowing the truth.

Then we see God the Father hand out a punishment.  But get this: immediately after he hands out the punishment, he goes and makes clothing for his children.  He doesn’t become the enemy.  He doesn’t become filled with resentment… he is filled with a fatherly love.  The kind of love that even though his children turned away from him, he turned toward them.

In Deuteronomy 32, Moses reminds the Israelites that God is their father and that he created them and established them.

We see it again in Psalms and Isaiah.

And in the New Testament, it echoes loudly.  Particularly in Matthew 6:9 when Jesus teaches us to pray to God like this: “Our father in heaven…”

We see God as Father clearly throughout the New Testament.  A constant reminder of his faithfulness to us… even in the midst of our sin.

Understanding who God is means we understand that he is our Father.  Our perfect Father.

3. Understanding who God is – Redeemer/Savior

Definition of redeem – to buy back, get back, to free from captivity by payment of ransom, to extricate from, or help overcome something, to release from blame or debt, to free from the consequences of sin.

Definition of Savior –  one that saves from danger or destruction, one who brings salvation

We tend to fall into three camps when it comes to sin:understanding-who-god-is-our-redeemer

  1. We believe that we are sinners, and know we need (and choose to accept) the grace of Jesus, our Savior and Redeemer.
  2. Believing that we have sinned too much… that we are too far gone… that Jesus certainly couldn’t be (or choose to be) our personal Savior and Redeemer
  3. In the midst of our comfortable, western lives, we don’t think we need a Savor and redeemer.  Sure, we may not be perfect… but we’re good people!

Where do you find yourself in that list?

The Bible makes it clear to us that we “have all sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).  So, if you find yourself camping out in the #3 option where you don’t consider yourself a sinner in need of redemption, you might want to reconsider.

Do you feel jealousy? Hate?  Have you cheated or lied?  Withheld truth or love?  Have you valued personal safety and freedom more than you’ve cared for the marginalized?  I sure have.  If you haven’t… tell me your secrets.  You’re beyond human.  But if you’ve done any of those things… even just a little… you need a savior.

If you find yourself camped out at option #2, and you think you’re beyond saving…  let’s remember that the redeemer and savior who wants to redeem you is the creator of the world.  If he has the power to breathe the universe into existence, he has the power to save you.

In fact, God loves to redeem people who seem beyond redemption.  Then not only does he redeem those people, but he appoints them to do amazing things for his glory and for the good of people.

For example, the man who wrote the bulk of the New Testament was named Paul (well, he was also known as Saul).  Before he met Jesus (rather dramatically), he actually persecuted and murdered Christians.  And he was PASSIONATE about it.  He loved the death of Christians.

God didn’t look at him and see a murderer, like you or I may have.  God purposed him for great things.  Paul continues to have massive influence, more than 2000 years after his earthly life.  Paul is certainly not the only example in the Bible of God redeeming those who seem beyond redemption.  God makes beauty from the ashes.

Understanding who God is means understanding that he is Savior and Redeemer.

Understanding who God is – Sanctifier

Definition of sanctify – to set apart to a sacred purpose, to free from sin, purify, to impart or impute sacredness.  Synonyms – Cleanse, purge, purify.

God not only redeems us, he begins to change us.  In Ephesians 5:25-27, Paul speaks to husbands about how they should love their wives.  He uses the example of Jesus sanctifying the church to make his point:

Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish.”

God-sanctifies-us-we-are-purifiedIn that scripture, we get to soak in the beautiful truth of how we’re not only saved, but washed clean.  Purified.  Changed.  In Christ, we no longer have a single spot, blemish, or wrinkle.  We’ve been sanctified.

We’re also told that God transforms us and renews our mind.  Check out this post to see how the renewal is a grace-filled process, and also an active process.

God is in the business of transforming hearts, minds, and lives.  His plan and purpose is better for us that any faulty plan we come up with our own.

Understanding who God is means that we understand he is our sanctifier.

Understanding who God is – KING

Definition of king – a paramount chief, God, Christ, one that holds a preeminent (supreme) position.

God was king before the universe began to exist.  God is referenced as King repeatedly throughout the Old Testament, and Jesus is repeatedly reference as king in the New Testament.

As we start drawing this article to an end, it feels fitting to share a scripture from Revelation 19:16, very near the end of the Bible:

“On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords.”

When you think back to who we’ve already learned God is, king makes perfect sense:

  1. Creator – Just to look at the beauty of this world, to observe it’s patterns and mysteries, is to be amazed at the one who created it.  The power, the knowledge, the wisdom, the creativity… our creator is King.
  2. Father – The perfect love our Father displayed is beyond the love of any earthly father.  Our Father is King.
  3. Redeemer/Savior – Our redeemer poured out everything for the sake of his people.  A bad king hoards his love and his goods… a perfect King pours out his love.  Our redeemer is KING.
  4. Sanctifier – We are not saved and then forgotten.  We are transformed and purified with purpose and intention.  A bad king oppresses and minimizes.  Our perfect King builds up, cleanses, and appoints.
  5. When we try to gain an understanding of who God is, we need to understand that God is KING.understanding-who-god-is-king-jesus

What this means for us

What does this mean for us?  Our king is a good, good God.  And he made us each in his image, with clear purpose and a unique calling.  If you feel lost in who you are, first remember the truth of who God is.  By doing this, you will find the truth of who you are, in Him.

Check out this related post about what God says about you.

If you’re looking for a little support as you orient your life to God, check out this free printable all about how to get your priorities straight.  Priorities are the things that are worthy to demand our time…  Where are you putting your time?

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Written by cecilyjoy
I help women grow in faith and health, and embrace real food in this fast-paced world.