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God
Themes
8:10
Explore the complex identity of God in the storyline of the Bible and the implications of a God who exists in a constant state of communal love.

Questions for Personal Reflection or Group Discussion:

  1. Compare and contrast Genesis 1:1-3 and John 1:1-5. How is God described in these two passages?
  2. Let’s read Proverbs 3:19, Exodus 35:30-32, and Colossians 2:2-6. Consider how God’s triune being uses wisdom to build up places where he can be with his people in unity. What do you observe?
  3. Check out Daniel’s vision of God in Daniel 7:9-14. What do you think Jesus is connecting to when he identifies himself as the Son of Man in John 9:35-38?
  4. Note some of the ways we are invited to partner with God’s royal and triune identity according to John 15:9-12, Philippians 2:5-11, and Ephesians 1:15-23. Discuss examples of what God’s partners are invited to imagine, trust, speak, and do in these passages.
  5. Take time to discuss other themes, questions, or key takeaways from what you learned together.
Who is God?

If you asked a room full of people this question, you’d get all kinds of answers. A common answer might even be an all-powerful deity—the big guy upstairs. But what does the word “god” actually mean in the Bible?

A complex God revealed through Jesus.

Jesus claimed to be the embodiment of the biblical God in human form. He is presented as both distinct from God and also God. He addressed God as “my Father,” but he also claimed that he and the Father are one. And when Jesus experienced the love of the Father, it was through the personal presence of the Spirit, who is both one with Jesus and the Father yet distinct from both. And while our minds aren’t fully capable of comprehending a being who is both one and more than one, this is precisely the portrait of God that is presented to us in the story of the Bible.

The Hebrew Scriptures prepared us for the concept of a God who is a complex unity, and the New Testament claims that in Jesus we see the most perfect portrait of the Creator, who is an eternal community of unified love—the one who is three and one.

An Invitation

This is not an easy concept to understand, but the biblical story isn’t asking us to simply comprehend the idea of God. Rather, in the story of Jesus, we are invited to know and be known by this being and participate in his eternal love.

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