If you really want to know someone, how would you go about it? Would you hear what others say about that person and then make up your mind? That would be a horrible mistake. The only way you can truly know someone is what that person says about himself or herself. In fact, I think this rule specifically and particularly applies about knowing God.
There is a story said about a little boy who was absolutely sure of knowing exactly where God lives. During a Sunday school class, the teacher asked the question, “Where does God live?” The boy’s hand immediately shoots up in the air, and he proceeded to answer the teacher’s question saying, “He lives in our bathroom.” Then he added, “Every morning, I hear my dad pounding on the door of the bathroom and yelling, ‘Good lord! Are you still there?’”
Anyone can claim to speak for God, or on behalf of God, or even claim to be God. It is not what I say about God, it is not what you say about God, it is not what a bigshot theologian says about God, but what God says about Himself is what really matters. The only way to know God is by his Word. For true believers in Christ:
- There is only one way that you can know what your Heavenly Father is like, and that is in His Word. For it is written, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” – John 1:1.
- There is only one manifestation of what your Heavenly Father is like, and that is His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. For it is written, “The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us, and we have seen His glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.” – John 1:14
- There is only one source from which you can understand how to relate to your Heavenly Father, and that is the Holy Bible. We learn from people in the Bible, we learn from examples, from their sins, failures, repentance and their godly lives. But if we ever just learn from people and miss comprehending the character of God, and what God wants us to know about Him in these stories then we miss everything.
The Bible reveals that Baal was a symbol of Satan. Baal was the god of the Phoenician. Baal was a god of power without righteousness; Baal was a god of lust without love; Baal was an immoral god; Baal was like the force in the star war sequel, he had a good side and a bad side, and the people were always confused which side they were dealing with. Unlike Baal, we learn from the Bible that God’s character is consistent by the way God dealt with his people, individuals, and nations.
Someone said the character of God is like a perfect symmetrical six-sided cube formed together that cannot be separated. On side one, there is God’s purity, holiness, and flawlessness counterbalanced on the opposite side two with his absolute love, compassion, and concern. On side three, there is God’s righteousness, justice, and impeccability counterbalanced on the opposite side four with his mercy, kindness and long-suffering. On side five, there is God’s integrity, truth, and dependability counterbalanced on the opposite side with his faithfulness, understanding and deep interest of his children.
The reason God revealed to us in his word so many of his own names is because he wants us to know his character. God revealing his very own names to us is evidence that he wants us to enter into a full and deep abiding relationship with him. God’s name is more than just a title, God’s name represents all that he is, his character, reputation, authority, and nature. Every word reveals a certain part of God’s character. If you really want to know God, you must understand what God revealed about himself in his names.
The first name that God wanted us to know about him is the name Yahweh (in English – Jehovah).” The name Yahweh is very important because it is more than just a name. The very identity of God is in that name, it reveals to us about God’s self-existence, self-sufficiency, self-reliance and God’s supreme sovereignty in the universe.
The name Yahweh was the name that God gave Moses (Exodus 3) when he asked of Moses to go to Egypt and lead the Israelite out of slavery. Moses asked, “Lord when I go to the Israelite in Egypt and say to them that ‘The God of your Fathers has sent me to you,’ and they say to me, ‘What is His name?’ what shall I say to them?” God said to Moses to tell the Israelite that, “I AM has sent me to you.”
The Word Yahweh means “I AM WHO I AM.” It is not ‘I WAS’ because he would have been only the God of the past. It is not ‘I WILL BE’ because he will be only the God of the future. But the name I AM says that I am the God of the Past, the God of the future, the God of the presence. That is why Revelation 4:8 reveals to us that the Angels in Heaven praise the name of the Lord saying, “Holy, Holy Holy, Lord God Almighty, Who was and is and is to come!” The 10 compound titles of the name Yahweh (Jehovah) are:
- Jehovah Jireh – The God who sees ahead, our Provider (Genesis 22:14)
- Jehovah Rapha – The God who Heals (Exodus 15:26)
- Jehovah Nissi – The God our Banner (Exodus 17:15)
- Jehovah M’Kaddesh – Our sanctifier (Leviticus 20:7)
- Jehovah Shalom – The Lord of Peace, the Lord of Host (Judges 6:24).
- Jehovah Tsidkenu – The Lord our Righteousness (Jeremiah 23:6)
- Jehovah Shammah – The God who is always there (Ezekiel 48:35)
- Jehovah Elyon – The Lord Most High (Psalm 7:17)
- Jehovah Rohi – The Lord our Shepherd (Psalm 23:1)
Without going into much detail, the name ‘El’ is a Hebrew word which is commonly used to refer to the one true living God or gods. But when used in the context of the one true living God the word El refers to Elohim, and it is often associated with other words. In the Bible, the name Elohim is used to refer to the incredible power and might of God. Numbers 23:22, says it was EL the powerful God who by his might brought the Israelite out of Egypt. In other forms, the name El-Shaddai means God Almighty. Jesus cried out on the cross with a loud voice (Mark 15:34), “Eloi, Eloi, Lama sabachthani?” which is translated, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” The word Eloi used by Jesus to address his Father is basically another form Elohim.
Abba is the most endearing term in the Hebrew language. It is a word that is filled with intimacy, tenderness, dependence, complete lack of fear or anxiety. To call God Abba Father is one of the greatest privileges God has given us. Why? All because of our Lord Jesus Christ who paid dearly for our redemption, salvation and adoption (Galatians 4:4-7) so that we can become sons and daughters of the Living God. Jesus said, no one comes to the Father but by me. And that is why from Genesis to Revelation Jesus is the central focus of the entire Bible.
- In Genesis, Jesus is the Seed of the Woman God promised Adam and Eve
- In Exodus, Jesus is the Passover Lamb.
- In Leviticus, Jesus is the High Priest
- In Numbers, Jesus is the smitten Rock
- In Deuteronomy, Jesus is the Prophet like Moses
- In Joshua, Jesus is the Commander of the Army of the Lord
- In Judges, Jesus is the Creator and the Final Judge
- In Ruth, Jesus is the Heavenly Kingsman Redeemer
- In Samuel, Jesus is the Anointed One
- In Kings, Jesus is the King of kings and the Lord of lords
- In Chronicles, Jesus is the Glory of God in the temple
- In Ezra, Jesus is the Teacher from God
- In Nehemiah, Jesus is the Rebuilder of broken lives
- In Esther, Jesus is the Protector of his people
- In Job, Jesus is the Only Comforter in times of trouble
- In Psalms, Jesus is our Good Shepherd
- In Proverbs, Jesus is the Wisdom of God
- In Ecclesiastic, Jesus is the Preacher of the Kingdom of God
- In Song of Solomon, Jesus is the Bridegroom
- In Isaiah, Jesus is the Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace
- In Jeremiah, Jesus is the Potter who molds the clay of our lives into the image of God
- In Lamentation, Jesus is the Weeping Prophet
- In Ezekiel, Jesus is the Wheel inside the wheel
- In Daniel, Jesus is the Son of Man coming in clouds of great glory, and the Fourth Person in the fiery furnace
- In Hosea, Jesus is the Love of God to the backslider
- In Joel, Jesus is the Baptism of the Holy Spirit.
- In Amos, Jesus is the Judgement and Mercy
- In Obadiah, Jesus is the God of Vengeance
- In Jonah, Jesus is the Obedience that brings about transformation
- In Micah, Jesus is the Great Intercessor
- In Nahum, Jesus is the Stronghold in the days of trouble
- In Habakkuk, Jesus is the God that remembers mercy in wrath
- In Zephaniah, Jesus is the Establisher of the Kingdom of God upon the earth.
- In Haggai, Jesus is the Desire of all nations
- In Zachariah, Jesus is the Pierced Son
- In Malachi, Jesus is the Refiner’s fire, the Sun of Righteousness who brings healing in his wings
When Jesus said to the Jews, “before Abraham was, I AM.” That word really should have given them goosebumps. It should have reminded them that this is the very God who appeared to Moses in the burning bush. And that is why in the New Testament we can see him with clarity.
- In Matthew, Jesus the Kingly Messiah
- In Mark, Jesus is the Miracle Worker
- In Luke, Jesus is the Great Physician
- In John, Jesus is the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world.
- In Acts, Jesus is the Risen Lord
- In Romans, Jesus is our Justification
- In Corinthians, Jesus is our Sanctification
- In Galatians, Jesus is our Liberation
- In Ephesians, Jesus is our Perfection
- In Philippians, Jesus is our only Joy
- In Colossians, Jesus is the Head of the Body, the Church.
- In Thessalonian, Jesus is the Coming Lord who will reign and rule forever.
- In Timothy, Jesus is the Judge of all men
- In Titus, Jesus is the Redeemer of the world.
- In Philemon, Jesus is the Friend that sticks to you closer than a brother
- In Hebrews, Jesus is the Author and Finisher of our Salvation
- In James, Jesus is the Healer of all nations.
- In Peter, Jesus is the Chief Shepherd and the Bishop of our Souls
- In the Epistles of John, Jesus is our Advocator with Abba Father.
- In Jude, Jesus is the Coming Lord with 10,000 of his Saints to execute judgement upon the earth
- In Revelation, Jesus is the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. The Lion of the tribe of Judah. The root of Jesse, the root of David, the Lamb of God, the Word of God, the King of kings and the Lord of Lords.
Precious Lord Jesus, I come longing to know you and to be more like you. By your Spirit living in me, please teach me to love you my Lord with all of my heart. Amen.
One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple. When I awake, I shall be satisfied with your likeness. Psalm 17:15 & Psalm 27:4