By Tim Frank
Pastor, First Baptist Church, Carthage
Focal Passage: Psalm 19:1-6; 111:7-10
I remember as a boy walking to the deer stand on cold, clear mornings, well before the sun began to dawn. On those nights, away from the lights of town, the stars filled the sky with an occasional shooting star passing in sight. Those were times of wonder and awe as I looked into the vastness of space. I could see the visible wonders of the universe and knew in my heart there is a God who created it all.
Many years have passed since those carefree days of discovery. Yet, through these years, my wonder and awe of the creative power of God has grown. As pictures from telescopes and space voyages reveal, the universe is much larger than we can see or grasp. With hundreds of millions of stars in our galaxy alone, the next nearest to our sun being 4.2 light years away, truly we can proclaim with the Psalmist in Psalm 19:1, “The heavens declare the glory of God and the firmament shows His handiwork.”
The universe, the sun, the stars and all creation are examples of what scholars call “General Revelation.” They give a witness to every person on the planet that there is a God. They do not use words or language, their voice is not heard, but the message is loud and clear. There is a God who is majestic, caring, creative, detail oriented and dependable.
Paul writes in Romans 1:18-22 that the invisible attributes of God are clearly seen by the created world. No one has an excuse to say, “I didn’t know there is a God.” In fact, the Psalmist writes in Psalm 14:1 that only a fool says there is no God. In 1 Peter 3:5, we read that they “willingly forget” about creation. They are ignorant on purpose.
In addition, God has specifically revealed Himself through His written word, the Bible. Scholars refer to the Bible as a “Special Revelation” of God which proclaims His character, His love and even His name (Exodus 3:13-14).
Psalm 111:7-9 states that the Scriptures are trustworthy in demonstrating God’s truth and justice. God’s Word gives an eternal verbal witness to His existence and attributes. From His first covenant with Noah, through the covenants with Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Moses, and culminating in the New Covenant in the precious blood of Jesus Christ, God reveals His presence, His care and His love for mankind.
The path to true wisdom, knowledge and understanding comes only through the fear of the Lord. This fear of the Lord is the proper awe, respect and relationship with God. It by default demands a belief that there is a God, and we are to worship and praise Him forever. There is no wisdom apart from the acknowledgement of God. The road to understanding is found by those who know there is a God, surrender to His will and do His commandments.
We would be remiss if we failed to include in this discussion of the existence of God His greatest revelation of Himself in the life, death and resurrection of His Son Jesus Christ. This “Personal Revelation” establishes the way through which we can know God intimately as His children (John 1:12).
Hebrews 1:1-4 presents Jesus as “the brightness of His glory, the express image of His person.” To see Jesus is to see God (John 1:1-5, 14; 14:6-11). There is a God who loves you, and you can know Him as your Father through faith and belief in His Son Jesus Christ. B&R