The Mustard Seed
Back when Moses had his first conversation with God, Moses felt afraid and confused. Moses saw that the world offered many conflicting ideas about God; indeed, the world offers many "gods." Moses want clarity about just which of these "gods" was talking to him.
Moses said to God, "When I go to the Israelites, I will say to them, 'The God of your fathers sent me to you.' What if the people say, 'What is his name?' What should I tell them?”
Then God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. When you go to the people of Israel, tell them, 'I AM sent me to you.' " (Exodus 3.13-14 NVC)
"I AM" is the meaning of the holy Name of God which we find in the Hebrew Bible -- our Old Testament. In our English Bibles this holy name is most often translated as LORD, in all uppercase letters. A few places it may be transliterated as "Jehovah" or a footnote in your Bible may show it as "Yahweh."
God says that HE IS. This answers "the fool" who says, "There is no God!" (Psalm 14.1) And this is in sharp contrast to all the other "gods" people have invented for themselves. God said many times and in many ways, "The gods of the nations are nothing! There are no other gods." HE IS and THEY ARE NOT. (Deuteronomy 32.39; Jeremiah 2.11).
But knowing that "God is" and knowing God personally are two different things. I may know who is the President of the United States, but I don't know him personally, nor does he know me and he probably never will. God is so much greater than the President. Is it possible for us to know Him personally? Is it possible for us to know what He is really like? The answer to both questions is "Yes." But we cannot know what God is really like until first we know Him personally.
The Bible says, "God's whole nature is living in Christ in human form." (Colossians 2.9 NIrV). Another version translates it this way: "All of God lives fully in Christ (even when Christ was on earth)" (NCV). When you know Christ Jesus, you know God. Indeed, Jesus said that He is the only way that we can truly know God (John 14.6-9).
How can you know Christ personally? It's really simple. Just ask Him. Expose your heart to Him, confessing your sins and rebellion. Know that when He died on the cross, He died there for you, taking for Himself the punishment that your sins deserve. Know that He paid your debt in full, that He forgives you, He adopts you as His own, and that He comes to live in you (Ephesians 3.17).
Once we know God personally, then we can learn more about what He is like. For that, we must examine what God has said about Himself in the Bible. And this will be the focus of our campus fellowship study this year.
~~ Pastor RonNext: God is Spirit
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We provide a Sunday morning shuttle from Gallaudet to Christ Lutheran Church of the Deaf in Silver Spring. Please email Ron.Friedrich@gallaudet.edu for time and place.
Thursday afternoons and Friday mornings
in Ely 118.
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Pastor Ron Friedrich