Bruce Collins, Evangelist

The personal website of Bruce Collins

God, Who is He?

Meditation for the week of April 17, 2011

John 8:24  Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins."

Muslim’s worship Allah.  Jews worship Jehovah.  Christians worship the Lord Jesus Christ.  Are we all worshiping the same God in a different way or are we all worshiping a different God?  I believe the verse we are looking at shows that we are not all worshiping the same God.

My friends who have good language skills have convinced me that a Muslim translating the Jewish word for God, would use the word Allah and it would mean the same thing to the Muslim that the word God does to the Jew and the Christian.  God is the Mighty One or the Supreme Being.  Even though a Muslim would call God Allah, they would say that they are worshiping the One and only Supreme Being.

Jehovah  is the personal name for the Jewish Supreme Being.  The old testament, the Bible for a Jew, teaches that Jehovah would suffer before he reigned.  Jehovah introduced Himself to the Jews through Moses at the burning bush in Exodus 3.  The Jews had known all about God before Moses’ experience at the burning bush, but now they know him as a Savior, a Redeemer, and a Deliverer.  He is no longer an abstract distant God.  It is Jehovah that led them out of Egypt and that guided them through the wilderness to the promised land. Christians know that Jesus in the new testament is the Jehovah of the old testament.  In Isaiah 6, Isaiah has a vision of the Lord.  The sixth verse makes it clear that he is seeing Jehovah of Hosts or Jehovah All Powerful.  In John 12:41, the passage in its context clearly states that this was none other than Jesus in his pre-incarnate glory.  Isaiah saw the Lord Jesus Christ!

When a Christian worships Jesus, He is worshiping Jehovah and He is worshiping the one and only living God.  When a Jew truly worships Jehovah, he is worshiping that same God.  However, when a Jew does not believe that Jesus is God or that He is the Jehovah that they say they worship, then they are rejecting the Messiah of their own Scripture.   Since the Lord makes it clear that He is one with the Father (John 10:30), Jews who do not accept the Lord Jesus as their Messiah, are not worshiping the same God that Christians worship.  Neither are they worshiping the God of their own Sacred Writings.

Jews who should have understood that Jesus is the Messiah based on their Scriptures but who do not accept that and a Muslim who is taught by their Scriptures that He is not the Messiah are both rejecting Jesus.  In both cases their God is not Jesus who is fully and completely  God (Colossians 2:9).  The Lord says,  “if you do not believe that I AM, you will die in your sins." I AM is one way of expressing the name Jehovah or the ever-existing One.  The word “He” has been added by translators for clarity but that addition actually makes the passage unclear.

Both Jews and Muslims who do not accept Jesus as God may worship a Supreme Being in some abstract way, but they don’t worship my God.  My God is the only One who saves.  He is the only way, the truth and the life (John 14:6).  No man comes to the Father except through Him.  We must believe that Jesus is the I AM in order to believe that He had the power and authority to die for our sins.

When we think clearly about these groups of people, we realize that they are both just sinners who need our Savior. Both  groups have rejected Christ for different reasons and thus they have rejected the only One who can save.  Our responsibility as Christians is not to fear them or to isolate them socially or to verbally attack them but to love them enough to preach Christ to them.  The Lord Jesus who is the Almighty One or God wants us all to trust and worship Him and only Him.  It makes all the difference for eternity.

Bruce Collins

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