How does one begin to describe God? Immortal is a good place to start–no beginning and no end. Invisible is also a good foundational point–hidden and unseen–God often works behind a curtain. Except…how do you explain the only begotten son who claimed to be God? People saw Him; He was clearly visible. The man Jesus began in Bethlehem and died on a cross in Jerusalem. How can one who claims to be God be born and then expire? Only in faith can a person begin to see the greatness, wonder, and beauty of God.
Immortal is an adjective that means “living or lasting forever” (from a review of top dictionaries). For some reason, the beginning is not addressed in the definition. It could be there is a distinction between eternal and immortal that has to do with beginnings. God is infinite, an entity that is self-existing, without origin.
He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.Ecclesiastes 3:11 (NIV)
The thing is, if people have been created, then people have a beginning, and there has to be a pre-existing creator. If we humans were created with an intuitive knowledge of eternity, then there is also a hidden desire to participate. Who can fully understand that God made such a provision for that experience through immortality? Only in the concept of Jesus, the Messiah. God is omnipotent and all-powerful; He can do anything He pleases without any effort on His part. A caveat; it pleases God to be Holy, it pleases God to be righteous, it pleases God to be merciful, and so on. He will not do anything that contradicts His nature.
Another aspect of God is a Triune nature. This, too, is a great, wonderous, and beautiful concept that can only be understood by faith. Verbal descriptions and definitions only dance on the fringes of the Trinity. First thing, God did not decide to have a triune nature. It has always existed. One cannot even say God Almighty was born that way because God is infinite. Humans exist only because God has a Triune nature, and salvation is only possible because of this nature.
Being omniscient or all-knowing, God had an institutional knowledge of creation, life, and death but not experiential knowledge. A great and mighty God, just and righteous, Holy and complete, not only desired the empirical knowledge of creation but needed it. Part of God’s intrinsic person is that of a father. A father desires to have children! The triune person of the Father could not experience fatherhood without children. Children need to be like their parents, and a mere creature in the image of the eternal is not quite enough. The person of the Son could not experience family nuances unless He had a mother and siblings.
In order for God’s family to identify with their father, they had to have experiential knowledge of a spiritual father; they had to have a spirit. So, man was created with a nature that incorporated a couple of trinities. Have you heard of body, soul, and spirit? Or mind, will, and emotions? It should not be surprising since a little bit of a creator is imparted to their creation. Consider the arts. Paintings bear so much of the painter’s soul and mannerisms that the astute student can tell who painted a work before seeing a name. In music, one can identify the author by the lyrics and the performing artist by tone and tempo. One can identify a preacher by his voice, message, and delivery. The preacher prepares or creates his message; however, if this is truly what God wants to say, then one can identify with it through the Spirit because the original creator is behind it all.
Another Quick Point
In order for people to become like true children of God, they must know good and evil. If they know evil, they must be rescued from its eternal outcomes. God’s solution is the new birth. Getting there was incorporated into the whole creation project, a subject that would fill a book. Now, look at the consistency of God.
In Jesus, God was able to experience birth as a creature and all the growing pains that go with it. He experienced every sort of evil but remained true to divine holiness. He experienced death and separation. In Jesus, the God who is eternal knew death firsthand yet did not die. He ushered in the reality of the resurrection for all to see and God’s plan of salvation, provisional death, and a new birth into the family of God. To do all this, the Lord needed a body that allowed Him to behave as God. Also, according to human terms and definitions, God had to become mortal before he became immortal.
For in christ all the fullness of the diety lives in bodily form.Colossians 2:9 (NIV)
All one must do is acknowledge God with an unbiased heart, and then the invisible becomes visible. The glory of the Son is visible, the works of His hands become visible, and faith is not so blind anymore. Now, then, “Deep honor and bright glory to the King of all time. One God, Immortal, Invisible, ever and always. Oh, Yes!” (1 Timothy 1:17 MSG)
Feature Images: Bigstock.com | Scripture quotations marked NIV are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide. | Scripture quotations marked MSG are taken from THE MESSAGE, copyright © 1993, 2002, 2018 by Eugene H. Peterson. Used by permission of NavPress. All rights reserved. Represented by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.