God is …
… more than an idea, a concept, an answer, a word, He is …
… my true Father in Heaven – who cares about me, teaches me, protects me, punishes me, satisfies me, loves me.
God has been known to me all my life. My parents played an important role in that and I am thankful to them for teaching me about Him.
Since I am an adult I have nobody to raise me anymore. I am raising my own children. Does this mean that I am perfect and need no further growth or admonition? By far not. Therefore it is my responsibility to keep growing and to teach my children about God while I can (“You shall teach them [God’s words] diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up” – Deuteronomy 6:7).
Yes, God tells me to teach my children as I was taught by my parents when I was a child. Without teaching there is no knowledge and no understanding. Without it we humans turn wild and return to our old uncivilized ways. Subsequently it is of great importance to teach and to be taught.
Why do I say all this when the title of this text talks about God and about how He is? Well, through my own children I understand God’s nature and intent much better. He wants me to teach them as He is teaching me. He wants us humans to grow, learn and develop for a very special purpose. Exactly the same things I and every loving parent desire for our children. We want them to become full adults – responsible, intelligent, wise and reasonable individuals who live a happy and successful life.
Now what is God? He is a father who does want the exact same thing as I want: Good, happy, healthy and blessed children.
What is a parent and a child? It is the smallest form of a family. God and Jesus Christ – His son – form a family unit. They are ONE: “I and My Father are one” (John 10:30). But then I have more than one child; and theoretically I could have quite a few more if I’d chose to. Can God have more than one son? Sure He can. God is “bringing many sons to glory” (Hebrews 2:10). We are called the (future) children of God: “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God” (John 1:12).
Again: What is God? The Bible reveals Him as a loving father who knows everything about us and who directs us the way we should go. How does He do that? By the power of His spirit (The spirit guides us: John 16:13). But is that spirit the mother when God is known as the Father? Let’s not be confused! The Bible never calls it this way. Rather the spirit is identified as God’s power, which is giving us understanding, strength and spiritual growth. God’s family doesn’t require a mother.
But a secret is this: His saints are prepared to be Christ’s bride. Revelation 19:7-8 mentions this glorious event: “Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready. And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.”
To summarize: God is our father because He made us – as we human parents physically “made” our own children in our own image (Genesis 1:26). He feels what parents feel for their children: The desire to see them grow and learn and be happy.
Christ is called our brother – which He is now. But He is also called our groom – which He will be when the saints will have been resurrected. Together we form a family which can consist of millions of members. The erroneous doctrine of the trinity – which most people call a mystery, since it can’t be understood, nor is found in the Bible – limits the God family to three individuals. The Bible however calls us God’s children. We will be with Him and be like Him (“Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him” (1. John 3:2).
Now God is: The Father and the Son. Soon God is: The Father, the Son and many Children of God. This is why the Psalmist was inspired to say: “I said, ‘You are gods, and all of you are children of the Most High'” (Psalm 86:2). Jesus agreed in John 10:31-36.
Finally, Psalm 103:13 shows how God feels towards us:
“As a father pities his children,
So the Lord pities those who fear Him.
For He knows our frame;
He remembers that we are dust.”
God knows. He is there and doesn’t leave or forsake us. He is really our Father in Heaven!