Basic Christianity Series #6: God The Father
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- Format: Folded Tract
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- Size: 3.5 inches x 5.5 inches
- Pages: 8
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God the Father
The Scriptures tell us that God is Spirit, God is light, God is love, and God is a consuming fire. We are told he is eternal, unchangeable, absolute, and perfect in all power, wisdom, holiness, and truth. He is the creator and blessed controller of all things. In his infinite wisdom and desire for relationship with his creation, God has chosen as his primary identity in the Scriptures to be that of Father. He is called Father more than 250 times in the New Testament. His role as Father tells us that family is central to his plan for all of his creation. When the disciples asked Jesus to teach them to pray, he began by saying, “Our Father.” Jesus was intimately aware of his Father’s compassion and ability to provide for and protect him.
As your Father, he is intimately aware of your needs and is committed to fulfill his promise to supply those necessities. My God shall supply everything you need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:19). Consider the power of that verse alone as it relates to you personally. Using a monetary example, if you were in need of a hundred dollars, I could supply you with one hundred dollars “according to your need.” However, let’s consider that I am very secure financially and to meet your request I decide to give you five hundred dollars instead. Now I have met your need “according to my riches.” God wants to supply everything you need according to his riches. …your heavenly Father already knows everything you need (Matthew 6:32). He is the perfect Father. As you walk in obedience to his ways, nothing good will be kept from you. …if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask him (Matthew 7:11).
Although your experience during your time on this earth may have given you an inadequate and deficient understanding of a good and loving father, you now have a Father who fills every role to perfection on your behalf as his child. …his name is the Lord…he is a father to the fatherless and a judge and protector of widows…. he places the lonely in families and gives the desolate a home in which to dwell (Psalm 68:4-6). …you received your Father’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own child. Now we call him, Abba, Father (Romans 8:15). The usage here suggests the more familiar family reference that loved children often use—“Daddy, Daddy!”
In Christian theology, Fatherhood is inherent to God’s very being. Father is a proper name for him, and does not merely describe what he is like, but also attributes to him the beginning and source of all activity. He has always existed. His Biblical name Yahweh means “I AM”, indicating that he always has been and always will be. The Bible does not tell us what he was doing before he created the universe, but it does say that he is in heaven, with Jesus sitting at his right hand. It was your Father who created the universe and everything in it. He is a big Father but at the same time a personal Father who knows your every need. Jesus told us that your Father knows you so well he has numbered every hair on your head. The very hairs on your head are all numbered (Luke 12:7).
Although God’s primary New Testament name is Father, the full meaning of his name and person begins with the first reference in the first verse of the Bible. In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth (Genesis 1:1). His name here is Elohim which occurs a multitude of times through the Old Testament. The name tells us of his consistency, that he is trustworthy to keep his covenant with us. The name also tells us of his sovereignty and authority over all of creation and his omnipotence as the possessor of the absolute power to exercise his authority. In the beginning Elohim spoke and it was so. The meaning of Elohim also tells us of his omnipresence, the ability to transcend all spacial limitations and to be present in every part of his creation. “Can anyone hide from me in a secret place? Am I not everywhere in all the heavens and earth?” says the Lord (Jeremiah 23:24). King David said…. If I go up to heaven, you are there; if I go down to the grave, you are there. If I ride the wings of the morning, if I dwell by the farthest oceans, even there your hand will guide me, and your strength will support me (Psalm 139:8-10).
Another attribute of Elohim, our gracious Father, is omniscience, whereby he has complete and perfect knowledge of all things, past, present and future. His understanding is infinite (Psalm 147:5). He is greater than your feelings, and he knows everything there is to know. God is greater than our heart, and he knows all things (1 John 3:20).
An additional important name for your Father in the Bible is Jehovah. He is the Holy one, the one who places moral obligations on your life if you are to live in his abundance. His holiness is seen in his works. The Lord is righteous in all His ways, gracious in all of His works (Psalm 145:17). Jehovah has established his standards for your good, that you will find fulfillment in your life. Your disobedience to his standards will bring his loving discipline. Have you forgotten the encouraging words God spoke to you as his children? He said… My child, don’t make light of the Lord’s discipline, and don’t give up when he corrects you. For the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes each one he accepts as his child (Hebrews 12:56).
Another descriptive reference to your Father is Adonai, also translated Lord. The root from which this name is derived means to judge or to rule with authority. You need security and your Father Adonai protects and defends you from others, and often from yourself. As a loving Father he watches over you so that nothing can touch you without his permission. We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps (Proverbs 16:9).
Your Father is all-powerful.
Your Father is all-knowing.
Your Father is present everywhere.
Your Father is just, yet always merciful. Your Father is absolute in his holiness. No darkness can exist within him.
Your Father is forever triumphant over Satan and his evil realm.
Your Father intervenes in your life when needed to light your path and protect you. Your Father is sovereign and in complete control, no matter what is happening in the world around you.
Your Father has given you his Word that you might know him and all that he has accomplished for you, that your life might be productive and glorifying to him.
Your Father can be known only through faith, not reason, although many continue to demand physical proof. God’s only son, Jesus Christ, supplied that proof by fulfilling prophecy, healing the sick, raising the dead, and rising from death himself.
Your Father’s ultimate plan will always overrule humankind.
Your Father’s recorded history and signs for the future have been provided to you along with his standards for righteous living and his instructions on the value of living in obedience to his ways.
Your Father’s promises are sure and true. He has chosen you for the ultimate personal relationship that has established for you a future that is well beyond your comprehension. No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him (1 Corinthians 2:9).
A portion of what your Father has in store for you includes many smaller more intimate surprises that could only come from a loving, gracious, merciful, and adoring Father. For example; To everyone who is victorious I will give some of the manna that has been hidden away in heaven. And I will give to each one a white stone, and on the stone will be engraved a new name that no one understands except the one who receives it (Revelation 2:17).
What could be more your own than a new name which even in eternity is a secret between you and your Father? Although your Father loves all of his children eternally and infinitely, it is so special that he also loves each in a unique and special way. C.S. Lewis wrote—“What shall we take this secrecy to mean? Surely, that each of the redeemed shall forever know and praise some one aspect of the Divine beauty better than any other creature can. Why else were individuals created, but that God, loving all infinitely, should love each differently? Individuals in the body of Christ are eternally different: a society, because each has something to tell all the others.”
Your Father is worthy of your trust. You can count on him at all times and he is eternally faithful to fulfill his promises to his children. As you learn to trust in him, you will also learn to …rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for Him (Psalm 37:7) …your future is in his hands (Psalm 31:15).