Pastor Steve Williams : Is God Even Knowable?

Is God...? · 40:45 · Recorded March 11, 2018

Is God Even Knowable?

Isaiah 45:15 (NIV) “Truly you are a God who hides himself, O God and Savior of Israel.”

God’s self-disclosure to us

1. Displayed powerfully in his creation.

Psalm 19:1-4 (HCSB) The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky proclaims the work of his hands. Day after day they pour out speech; night after night they communicate knowledge….Their message has gone out to all the earth, and their words to the ends of the world.

Romans 1:18-21 (ESV) The wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened.

Am I filled with awe & gratitude?

2. Seen constantly in our fellow humans.

Genesis 5:1-2 (NLT) When God created human beings, he made them to be like himself. He created them male and female, and he blessed them and called them “human.”

Acts 17:25-28 (ESV) “He himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything. And he made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth…that they should seek God, and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him. Yet he is actually not far from each one of us, for ‘In him we live and move and have our being.’”

Do I look for him in others?

3. Found supremely in his incarnate Son.

Hebrews 1:1-3 (NLT) Long ago God spoke many times and in many ways to our ancestors through the prophets. And now in these final days, he has spoken to us through his Son…The Son radiates God’s own glory and expresses the very character of God.

Colossians 1:15-19 (NET) He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation…all things were created through him and for him. He himself is before all things and all things are held together in him…so that he himself may become first in all things. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in the Son.

Am I acknowledging him properly?

4. Declared plainly in his inspired Word.

Psalm 138:2 (NIV) “I will bow down toward your holy temple and will praise your name for your love and your faithfulness, for you have exalted above all things your name and your word.”

2 Peter 1:3-4 (NIV) His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.

Am I letting him speak it to me?

The heart of the matter

Hosea 6:3 (NLT) Oh, that we might know the LORD! Let us press on to know him. He will respond to us as surely as the arrival of dawn or the coming of rains in early spring.”

It’s never a head, but always a heart problem involved.

Psalm 14:1 (NLT) Only fools say in their hearts, “There is no God.”

Jeremiah 29:12-14 (NIV) “You will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you,” declares the LORD.

The aim of knowing him is to reflect him!

Jeremiah 9:23-24 (NIV) This is what the LORD says: “Let not the wise man boast of his wisdom or the strong man boast of his strength or the rich man boast of his riches, but let him who boasts boast about this: that he understands and knows me, that I am the LORD, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight,” declares the LORD.

– When you consider the “classical” arguments for God’s revelation of himself, which do you find most compelling? Which is the hardest for you to grasp or communicate to others?

– Read Isaiah 45:15. Did you experience God’s “hiddenness” in your own journey to faith with him? Why do you think that may have been a necessary part of the process?

– Review the scriptures Pastor Steve included in this outline. Is there one or more that seemed to speak to you with special power or stood out somehow? Is there one or more that raised thoughts or questions that you’d like to give further thought to?

– Read Romans 1:18-21. When you look at the creation we’re a part of, what “attributes” or hidden qualities of God do you see? Make a list of those your group identifies. What would you miss most about our incredible world if you were blind?

– What difference do you think it makes to believe that persons are intentionally formed by God in his image rather than simply a “cosmic accident?” How does this truth help you to see the importance of Matthew 25:31-46 and 1 John 4:19-21?

– Read Jeremiah 9:23-24. Why do people “boast” in things? Why does God say we should boast in our knowledge of him? How is it possible to boast without being arrogant? How does this passage harmonize with Ephesians 2:8-9?

– What will be your biggest take away from this message?

– Today our elementary kids learned about Joseph and how God was with him while Joseph was in the middle of some difficult circumstances. Ask your kids where Joseph was. (In jail) What did God help Joseph do for the cupbearer, baker, and finally for Pharaoh? (Told them what their dreams meant) This story helped us to recognize our bottom line: I can trust God no matter what (because He is always with me).

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