God the Father is:
Omnipotent- All powerful. There is nothing which the Father cannot do. While Genesis chapter one reveals the creative work of the Trinity, it is God the Father who spoke. It was God the Father who delivered the Israelites from Egypt by the plagues and the parting of the Red Sea. It was God the Father who gave the Israelites victories over their enemies, and it was God the Father who punished His people for their disobedience by using world leaders such as Nebecunezzar and Cyrus. God the Father's power knows no bounds. (Bible references)
Omniscient- All knowing. God the Father knows everything that happens in the universe and beyond. Jesus in the sermon on the Mount points this out. God the Father knows whatever we would ask Him in prayer and He knows what is in our hearts without us even saying it. (Bible references)
Omnipresent- Present at all places at all times. While God the Father has revealed Himself to us in forms we can identify with (mighty hand of God, strong arm of God, voice of God etc.) the ultimate truth is that God the Father is Spirit not bound by space or time. Jesus demonstrates this attribute of the divine after the resurrection in His confident assertion and promise: "I will be with you always, even to the end of the age." (Bible references)
Character- God's character is perfect and Holy. Because God is Holy He CANNOT allow "sin" to go unpunished. His wrath has been poured out against the wicked time and time again, and yes, even today. God is, at the same time, loving. His ultimate demonstration of this love is the sacrifice of His only begotten Son for the salvation of His creation (that's us). In His love, He is quick to forgive repentant sinners; forgiving them as if they never sinned. God shows us His mercy and patience by holding off the day of Judgement until all have had the opportunity for repentance and a chance to come to faith. (Bible References)
*As a note, God's character and attributes are never on trial. The creation does not have the right, let alone the intelligence, to determine that anything the Creator is, says, or does is anyway less than perfect or holy. Doing so only displays our (said as lovingly as possible) arrogance and ignorance.
The Old Testament foretells the birth, life, and death of the "Christ" or "Messiah" that was to come. The one who fulfills all of these prophesies is the Christ... and Jesus did fulfill these prophesies.
The Christ must have a specific lineage: Matthew and Luke records this for us. The Christ must be born of a virgin: When the angel Gabriel told Mary she was to be pregnant, she asked how that could be since she had not had sex yet. Joseph, who was pledged to be married to her at the time, was also wondering how! He knew that he had not had sex with her, and was going to divorce her (the proper procedure at the time) until an angel enlightened him. He must be born in Bethlehem, called out of Egypt, and be called a Nazarine: Caesar Augustus called a census that forced Joseph and Mary to register in Bethlehem, where Jesus was then born. Then an angel told them to go to Egypt to wait, as Herod, in an attempt to eliminate the Christ Child, killed every male child two years and under in Bethlehem. Then they returned to Nazareth, where Jesus grew up being known as a Nazarene.
The life of the Christ must be divine, that is showing the attributes of God. One of those attributes is omniscience- all knowing. Jesus knew all things about all people. He knew Nathaniel's name and character. He knew the private, painful life of the woman at Jacob's well. Jesus knew the motives of his enemies and He answered their questions before they asked them. Omnipotent-all powerful- is another divine attribute Jesus had. The Apostle John wrote, that if all of the things that Jesus did were written down, the whole world wouldn't have enough room for all the books! We have just a small, but potent taste of the miracles that Jesus performed. While many of His miracles helped people physically, such as the healings, feedings, and bringing people back from the dead, that was just a side benefit to the real reason: To bring people to believe in Him as their Lord and Savior. The Gospel of Mark is good to read if you want to explore Jesus' miracles. As a Holy sacrifice, payment for the sins of the world, the Christ must be sinless. Being that Jesus was conceived by the Holy Ghost and not by a sinful man, He was not born of sin as the rest of mankind is. You could say He gets His sinlessness from His Father's side! It was also His divinity that kept Him from sinning throughout His earthly life; being tempted in the flesh He remained holy by the Spirit. Even His enemies couldn't find any wrongdoing to accuse Him of when they brought Him before Pontious Pilate. Pilate said, "What crime has he committed... I find no basis for a charge against this man."
I suggest reading Isaiah chapter 53, which was written nearly 600 years before Jesus was born. The way the Christ must die is very specific. He is to be crushed, afflicted, oppressed, rejected by men, pierce, suffer while remaining silent and not have a broken bone at the end of it all! His clothes are to be divided by a casting of lots. He will be buried with the wicked and the rich. Did Jesus fulfill these prophesies? At the sham of a trial before the Jewish leaders and then the Roman authorities, Jesus didn't even answer the trumped up charges against Him and He never denied His claim to deity. When Pilate was going to release Him for lack of evidence, the same people that welcomed Him into town 5 days earlier were now rejecting Him, shouting, "Crucify him!" As He was taken away to be crucified they flogged Him (which is being tied over a stump and whipped with leather straps that have pieces of bone or metal in the end that rips away flesh). The Roman guards put a crown of thorns on His head, spit on Him and repeatedly beat Him on the head with a wooden staff. Before He was put on the cross, His clothes were taken from Him and divided among the Roman guards by a casting of lots. Since the Passover was at hand, the Jews asked Pilate to break the legs of those on the crosses and have the bodies taken down (if a crucifixion is taking too long to kill the person, the legs were broken to cause more trauma and disrupt blood flow which quickens the death). They broke the legs of the two thieves, but since Jesus had been so badly beaten He was already dead. Jesus did not have His legs broken, but instead the guard pierced His side with his sword and "blood and water" poured out (standard practice for crucifixion to verify death was to pierce the side of the individual and if the blood had separated already the person was dead). He was killed along side of two criminals and was buried in the tomb of a prominent council member.
That means that Jesus is God and we can trust His words!
|"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. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son."|
The Spirit is (or should be) the believer's best friend. Being, by nature, spiritually blind, deaf, and dead, an enemy of God, we are brought into faith by the Spirit of God. Once a part of the family of faith, the Spirit lives within our bodies (that is why sins against our bodies are so offensive to God, they assault God where He lives).
His goal is to teach us, mature us, and cleanse us.
Spiritual wisdom is spiritually discerned. Natural man cannot understand spirtual wisdom and neither can the believer without the aid of the Holy Spirit. Once we have an understanding of God's Word, the Spirit works within us to mature us in that wisdom; allowing us to do the good things we ought to do. The Spirit also convicts us of our sin. By pruning the dead and decaying parts of our lives away, He makes room for healthy, Godly growth.
The word "Church"(Greek- "ekklesia") indicates a "calling out" from an origin. The Christian Church, therefore, would be people who are called out by Christ. So from that we can state that the Church is not a denomination, an organizational structure, or the buildings that make up a sancuary, but everyone in the world that joins in Peter's confession.
The Christian Church stands on the reality and belief that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God. Jesus is the fulfillment of the God's promise for a Savior and a sacrifice for our sins.
The Christian Church is built by God not by man. Jesus states, "I will build my church." The Church is not built by man's programs, cleverness, or even his faithfulness. God does use man to preach His word and model His character, but it is God that opens hearts and grants faith.
The Christian Church is eternal. No matter what Satan or man does, God's Church will not be overcome.
The Christian Church is proportionally small. The Old Testament always speaks of believers as a "remnant", the leftovers of society, if you will. Jesus, in His sermon on the mount, states
"Wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it." (Matthew 7:13-14 NIV)