WHO IS YOUR GOD?
By Adauto Rezende
Do you know God? Do you worship Him? I am talking about the true God, who created the heavens and earth. History proved that humanity has made millions of gods to worship since the time when sin entered the world. From ancient times up to now, Assyrians, Egyptians, Babylonians, Persians, Greeks, Romans and our present generation, humanity are still bowing down to idols, to human beings, to the starry hosts, worshiping creation. Paul, the apostle in one of his many missionary trips stopped in Athens. As a Pharisee, he had grown up in a Jewish community that had no place for pagan worship.
In the site where the Athenians worshiped their idols: “Paul then stood up in the meeting of the Areopagus and said: “People of Athens! I see that in every way you are very religious. For as I walked around and looked carefully at your objects of worship, I even found an altar with this inscription: TO AN UNKNOWN GOD. So you are ignorant of the very thing you worship—and this is what I am going to proclaim to you. “The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by human hands. And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything. Rather, he himself gives everyone life and breath and everything else. From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands. God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us. ‘For in him we live and move and have our being. As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’ “Therefore since we are God’s offspring, we should not think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone—an image made by human design and skill. In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent. For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to everyone by raising him from the dead.” Acts 17: 22-31
Paul introduced some revelation of the real God to that pagan Greek society. The true God that out of love created us and gave us this beautiful planet to live in it, to enjoy everything he had made in it. The beauty of the flowers, mountains and birds, the taste of fruits, fish, meat and crops, the fragrance of plants and, the fellowship with other people. However, we betrayed God, and we became sinners by disobeying His command. Again, because of His love for us, Scriptures affirm, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” John 3: 16
According to the verses above, God loves you. He sent his son Jesus Christ to pay for your salvation when he died on the cross. If you believe in the Son, you will not be condemned; the Son did not come to condemn you, but to rescue you, to revive your dead spirit, to sanctify you, to forgive you from all your sins. This is how God proved his love: His Son was hanging on a cross to save a rebellion, proud and wicked people like us. The cross of Christ shows God’s mercy as he offered His only Son as the sacrifice for sin, but also shows God’s holiness as he could not allow our sins to go without punishment. The most terrible event in human history shows both attributes of the true God: love and holiness.
However, the Scriptures say if you reject the Son you will suffer in hell for all eternity.
Why would people end up in hell? It is because God did not love them? Of course not! He did all he could to get us out of eternal damnation. He showed us his love through creation and above all giving Jesus as a sin offering on our behalf. You can accept the true God, who made everything for your pleasure and who paid for your salvation or you can worship a false god from the millions man-made you might choose. Unfortunately, humanity who despises the true God ended up on two categories:
1. GOD’S MAKER: Some people tell me when I speak about God’s holiness that they do not want such a God, they say that the god they worship would not condemn anyone and because of their choice they end up:
a) Breaking the second commandment:
“You shall have no other gods before me. “You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them;…” Exodus 20: 3-5
The commandment is clear. Do not make a god from whatever creature you can imagine. No matter their biography, no matter their deeds, no matter their power.
b) Became fools:
“Gather together and come; assemble, you fugitives from the nations. Ignorant are those who carry about idols of wood, who pray to gods that cannot save.” Isaiah 45: 20 “Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles. They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.” Romans 1: 22- 25
c) Became like the idols they worship:
“The idols of the nations are silver and gold, made by human hands. They have mouths, but cannot speak, eyes, but cannot see. They have ears, but cannot hear, nor is there breath in their mouths. Those who make them will be like them, and so will all who trust in them.” Psalm 135: 15-18 Idolatry caused people to become spiritual zombies. Because they would not respond to the real God, their eyes, their ears and mouths are exactly like the gods they decide to follow. They are incapable of see, hear and confess the glory of God and accept his words.
d) Idolaters, which brings sexual deprivation:
“Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen. Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.” Romans 1: 24-27
Idolatry is the mother of sexual immorality, including homosexuality. In ancient times it was called sacred prostitution, temple prostitution or cult prostitution.
2. GOD’S DENIERS
Others affirm that there is no God, making themselves gods. They just ignore the fact of creation as the Psalmist says: “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.” Psalm 19: 1. And as Paul wrote: “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature— have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.” Romans 1: 20 The arrogant atheists shout hysterically: “there is no God.” This is a senseless statement. To say such thing, a person has to be omniscient (know all), a divine attribute that the only One they deny, it is the One who has it.
However, they are mere mortals who are here today and tomorrow they will be gone. Indeed, the adjective the Bible call such people is “fools.” They are not God; they are fools, for just a fool could neglect the greatness of the Maker of the universe. Therefore, because of this choice, The Scriptures reviews their character:
a) Foolish: “The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, their deeds are vile; there is no one who does good.” Psalm 14: 1
b) Pride: “In his pride the wicked man does not seek him; in all his thoughts there is no room for God." Psalm 10: 4
c) Delusion: “An oracle within my heart concerning the transgression of the wicked: There is no fear of God before his eyes. For he flatters himself in his own eyes, When he finds out his iniquity and when he hates.” Psalm 36: 1-2
“I am the LORD, and there is no other; apart from me there is no God.” “I have made the earth, And created man on it. I—My hands—stretched out the heavens, And all their host I have commanded.” “Tell and bring forth your case; Yes, let them take counsel together. Who has declared this from ancient time? Who has told it from that time? Have not I, the LORD?" Isaiah 45: 5-12
a) God is love and He had proved it: “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5: 8
b) He is holy and Saviour: “And there is no other God besides Me, A just God and a Savior; There is none besides Me. “Look to Me, and be saved, All you ends of the earth! For I am God, and there is no other.” Isaiah 45: 21 “But as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.” "YOU SHALL BE HOLY, FOR I AM HOLY." I Peter 1: 15-16
c) Everyone will bow before Him. Atheists, idolaters, angels, Satan, demons and true believers: “I have sworn by Myself; The word has gone out of My mouth in righteousness, And shall not return, That to Me every knee shall bow, Every tongue shall take an oath.” Isaiah 45: 22-23 “That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Philippians 2: 10-11
YOU CAN ABANDON IDOLATRY:
“And believe in the true God, turn way from any form of idolatry to serve the true God, and to have hope in Christ, that died and rose again for your sins and who will take his followers out of hell to our eternal home: “Your faith toward God has gone out, so that we do not need to say anything. For they themselves declare concerning us what manner of entry we had to you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, and to wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead, even Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come.” I Thessalonians 1: 9-11
To God be all the glory!