We come to know God quite well by reading the Bible, His Autobiography—that is why He gave it to us. The more time we spend reading it, the more personally we know Him—the closer we draw to Him, and the closer He draws to us. James 4:8 “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.”
Proverbs 2:1-9 “My son, if you receive my words, And treasure my commands within you, so that you incline your ear to wisdom, and apply your heart to understanding; yes, if you cry out for discernment, and lift up your voice for understanding, if you seek her as silver, and search for her as for hidden treasures; then you will understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God. For the LORD gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding; he stores up sound wisdom for the upright; he is a shield to those who walk uprightly; he guards the paths of justice, and preserves the way of His saints. Then you will understand righteousness and justice, equity and every good path.”
Matthew 22:29 “But Jesus answered them, ‘You are wrong, because you know neither the Scriptures nor the power of God.’”
Job 23:12 “I have not departed from the command of His lips; I have treasured the words of His mouth more than my necessary food.”
Psalm 119:103 “How sweet are Your words to my taste! Yes, sweeter than honey to my mouth!”
From the Bible (God’s autobiography), we know that the attributes and characteristics of God are:
Wisdom: He devises perfect ends and achieves these ends by the most perfect means–God makes no mistakes. Romans 11:33-34 “O the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and inscrutable His ways! For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been His counselor?”
Infinitude: God is infinite—He knows no boundaries. He is without measure. Since God is infinite, everything about Him is infinite. Psalm 145:3 “Great is the LORD, and highly to be praised, And His greatness is unsearchable.”
Sovereignty: God rules His entire creation and is in control of everything that happens. Being all-knowing and all-powerful allows Him absolute freedom to do whatever He knows to be best. Although God is sovereign, He gave us free will to make and be responsible for our choices in life. Our most important choice in life is whether or not we choose to know and honor Him—every other choice in life is ultimately of no significance.
Holiness: God’s Holiness—His majesty and His perfect moral purity—sets Him apart, further than east is from west, from all His created beings. There is absolutely no sin or evil thought in God. He is the definition of what is pure and righteous in the universe. Deuteronomy 32:4 “The Rock! His work is perfect, For all His ways are just; A God of faithfulness and without injustice, Righteous and upright is He.”
Immutability: God never changes.
Trinity: The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are all called God, worshipped as God, exist eternally yet are completely intermingled, and are involved in doing things only God could do. Although God reveals Himself in three persons, God is indivisible, and All are completely involved whenever One of the Three is active.
Faithfulness: Everything that God has promised will come to pass. He cannot lie. All He has said about Himself in His autobiography is true.
Love: Love is such an important aspect of God’s character that the apostle John wrote, “God is love.” God holds the well-being of others as His primary concern. To see His love in action, we study the life of Jesus—His sacrifice on the cross for our sins was the ultimate act of love. God’s love is given freely and abundantly to the objects of His affection—those who choose to follow His Son Jesus, and are now His adopted children.
Self-existence: God has no beginning or end. He just is. The Bible says, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” He was there before the beginning.
Self-sufficiency: God has life in Himself. John 5:26 “For as the Father has life in Himself, so he has granted the Son also to have life in Himself,”. All other life in the universe is a gift from God. He needs nothing, and there is nothing that can improve Him. He does not need our help with anything, but because of His grace and love, He allows us to be a part of advancing His plan on earth by sharing His love with others, so they might come to know and glorify Him.
Eternal: God has always been and will forever be, because God dwells in eternity. Time is His creation, which is how he can see the end from the beginning, and can never be taken by surprise.
Goodness: God’s attribute of goodness predisposes Him to be kind, compassionate, benevolent, and filled with good will toward men, and to bestow His many blessings on His children. God’s actions define what goodness is, and are manifested in the flesh in the way Jesus related to the people around Him. Psalm 106:1 “Praise the LORD! Oh give thanks to the LORD, for He is good; for His lovingkindness is everlasting.”
Gracious: God enjoys giving gifts to those who love Him, even when they do not deserve it—this is Grace. Jesus Christ is the channel through which His grace moves. John 1:17 “From His fullness we have all received grace upon grace. For the Law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.”
Justice: God is just, and it is His character that defines what being just is. He, being just, brings moral equity to everyone. When there are evil acts, justice demands there be a penalty; however, because of His love, God paid the penalty for our evil deeds by going to the cross Himself. His justice needed to be satisfied, but He took care of it on behalf of all who accept His gift of grace through Jesus Christ.
Mercy: God is actively compassionate. Since God’s justice is satisfied in Jesus, He freely shows mercy to all those who have chosen to follow Him. Since it is part of God’s nature, His mercy will never end. For those who choose to despise or ignore God, His justice becomes His prominent attribute.
Omnipotence: God is “All-powerful”. He is infinite and He possesses power, therefore He possesses infinite power. He allows His creatures to have some power, but it in no way diminishes His own. When the Bible says God rested on the seventh day, it was to set an example for us, not because He was tired—God never sleeps.
Omnipresence: God is “always present.” Since God is infinite, His being knows no boundaries. The phrase “I am with you always” is repeated over twenty times in both the Old and New Testaments. Isaiah 41:10 “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” Matthew 28:20 “And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Omniscience: God is all-knowing—He knows everything, and His knowledge is infinite. We cannot hide anything from God. Jeremiah 23:24 “Can a man hide himself in hiding places so I do not see him? Declares the LORD, “Do I not fill the heavens and the earth?” Declares the LORD.
Psalm 139 1-16 “O LORD, You have searched me and known me. You know my sitting down and my rising up; You understand my thought afar off. You comprehend my path and my lying down, and are acquainted with all my ways. For there is not a word on my tongue, but behold, O LORD, You know it altogether. You have hedged me behind and before, and laid Your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain it.
Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? If I ascend into heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there. If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there Your hand shall lead me, and Your right hand shall hold me. If I say, “Surely the darkness shall fall on me,” even the night shall be light about me; indeed, the darkness shall not hide from You, but the night shines as the day; the darkness and the light are both alike to You.
For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvelous are Your works, and that my soul knows very well. My frame was not hidden from You, when I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in Your book they all were written, the days fashioned for me, when as yet there were none of them.
How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How great is the sum of them! If I should count them, they would be more in number than the sand; When I awake, I am still with You.”