The God You Can Know

Dear Brethren,

There is nothing more important than coming to know the True God.  We of all people are most blessed to know God.  We are most privileged to not only know of the True God, but to have a relationship with Him.  We are reminded not to forget our godless roots of which we were once a part.

Galatians 4:8-9  Howbeit then, when ye knew not God, ye did service unto them which by nature are no gods.  But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage? 

Paul says it both ways to drive home the obvious point that our mere human minds could never contain even a small portion of the wisdom of God.  He is infinitely greater than man; therefore, we should not expect to be able to fully comprehend God.  However, there is so much to know of God in the Scriptures that most people never avail themselves of that information.  Jesus revealed the Father to us, and He made Himself known to us who knew not God.  Jesus said:

John 10:14  I am the good shepherd, and I know My own, and I am known by my own sheep.

The world does not know the Father, and subsequently the world does not know us.

1John 3:1  Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knows us not, because it knew Him not

We are sternly warned against being puffed up, prideful or arrogant because of the knowledge we’ve been entrusted with.  God has revealed Himself and the things about Himself to us through many, many designations and titles in the Scriptures.  The Prophets of old employed so many inspired words to express the reality of God being shown them as they were writing the Scriptures.  And human language will always come far short of describing the ineffable and inexpressible supreme God.  Jesus prayed:

John 17:25-26  O righteous Father, the world has not known thee: but I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me.  And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them. 

There is only one supreme God and His personal name is YHVH – usually translated as LORD (in all capital letters) in English translations of the Old Testament.  YHVH is composed of the four Hebrew letters Yod, Hey, Vav (or Wah, there is no “W” sound in Hebrew), and Hey – sometimes called the tetragrammaton meaning “the four letters.”  Since ancient Hebrew did not possess any vowel markings (a,e,i,o,u), the actual pronunciation of YHVH can only be speculation.

God’s name does not apply only to God.  His name becomes relevant to the saints as well, because at our conversion we were baptized into name of the Father – becoming Children of God.  And Jesus says that he who overcomes will receive the name of my God, and we have received the Father’s name in our forehead (1John 3:2, Revelation 3:12; 14:1).

This world in which we live is almost totally unaware of the great God who created it.  Even “Christian” nations have mostly relegated God to the status of myth or illusion. The Church of God recognizes that God is revealed in the very first verse of the Bible.

Genesis 1:1  In the beginning God [‘Elohim’] created the heaven and the earth.

God reveals the first of his many names as “Elohim,” which means “Strong One,” “Mighty One” or “Powerful One.”  Sadly, God’s name is held in derision by the intelligentsia, the courts of law and the educational elite.

Psalm 8:1  O LORD our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth!  Who has set thy glory above the heavens!

God reveals Himself to us through the Biblical names and titles He has chosen, in order to help us relate to Him.  God's names represent His attributes, His character, His personality, His reputation, and His nature.  There is no more important goal for a Christian than to know God and become like God.

John 17:3  This is life eternal, that they might know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.

Even now, we are set aside and protected by the name of God when we hold it in reverence and obedience.  Jesus prayed:

John 17:11   And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee.  Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me that they may be one, as we are.

Our attaining eternal life is dependent on our knowing God and becoming like Him – not just pronouncing His name in some esoteric way.  The very purpose of our having been created is it to be in the image of God (Genesis 1:26-27).

Sometimes people in the Church will say, “God looks just like us.”  There is so much more to the equation than that.  Ask yourself if you possess eternal life?  God does.  What of the strength, power, compassion, wisdom, mercy and love of God?  What about His divinity and holiness?  Does any man have the glory of God?  We must conclude that we have a good way to go before we fully know and resemble Almighty God.

Jesus is the precise image of His Father, and we are to become perfect – putting on the perfection of Jesus Christ (Hebrews 1:3).  Of course, in the flesh, we will not complete the task set before us of becoming fully perfect, non-the-less, the perfection of Jesus Christ is our goal to which we must constantly strive to attain.

Ephesians 4:13  Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.

In the Book of Revelation God speaks of His Church as having held fast His name and having not denied His name.  (Revelation 2:13; 3:8)  Our understanding what the Bible means by God’s Name is very important for us.

In the Bible, God goes by many Divine names, titles and descriptions.  God’s names reveal who and what He is.  The first thing that Jesus taught His disciples was God’s name is the holiest name (Matthew 6:9).  We, the people of God – want to know all there is to know about God – as He is revealed in the Scriptures.  We study about God, and we live His way.

In today’s sermon we will see how God is the God we can know through the many Godly names He has revealed to us in the Bible.

Sermon:  "The God You Can Know"