Saturday, September 22, 2012

The Nature of God

Many people, at many times, have believed in many gods. This is the God that I believe in. 

I believe that God is the Creator of all things in the earth, and on the earth, and all things throughout the universe, the universe itself, and all things beyond it. I don't believe that God created everything out of nothing (ex nihilo); instead, I believe that God created all things from existing materials. In this sense, "create" and "organize" can be said to be synonymous. 

The universe is a big place, bigger than anyone could have imagined, more intricate and beautiful. Instead of trying to limit the power of God to a stubbornly literal understanding of the story of the Creation in the book of Genesis, I see the advance of scientific knowledge as evidence of God's greatness. 

I believe God has all power, limited by his Nature alone. According to my understanding, God can do anything and everything it is possible to do; however, there are many things that God will not do. For example, God will never lie, because to lie would be contrary to his Nature as a God of Truth. Similarly, it is impossible for God to commit sin, not because God is incapable but because to do so would be contrary to his nature. In a sense, sin is an indication of our own powerlessness. All virtue and power are God's. 

The old question, "Can God create something too heavy for God to lift?" implying that if he cannot, he must not be omnipotent, is a non sequitur brought on by linguistic gymnastics. Being unable to lift something is a lack of power, not an indication of such. 

I believe that time has no hold on God; and the passage of time is a symptom of our own fallen and mortal state. Imagining what it must be like to live outside of time is quite possibly impossible, which is why when we speak of God, he seems so limited by our own understanding of that concept. 

I believe God knows all things, including all of our secret thoughts. He has all knowledge and all truth. All things past, present, and future are continually before him. Without omnipotence, no being could be perfect. More, because God is a Creator, I believe God capable of adding truth, of thinking new things, which become a part of his vast understanding. I also believe that god is the epitome of Wisdom. 

Through his Spirit, I believe God is in all places. Once when asked about how God could command the seas, the wind, the earth, the sun, and all things in creation, I suggested that it is the same way in which we, as spirits inhabiting mortal forms, command our own bodies.

I believe God is sacred and holy. Looking these words up, I find such definitions as "worthy of veneration", "set apart", "devoted", "consecrated", and "blessed". I believe God is a god of Truth. I believe God is perfect; both meaning without blemish, and complete in himself. I believe that God is a god of Freedom. I believe that God is Faithful and unwavering. Hope, Harmony, Law... any trait that is good and praiseworthy in human beings, I ascribe to God. 

I believe God is Just. Because God is just, I believe every action has a consequence equal in nature and severity to itself. I also believe that everyone will eventually get what they deserve. 

I also believe that God is Love. How God implemented His Plan of Salvation, whereby he is both Just and Merciful, is an amazing and wonderfully powerful discussion which will take many blog posts. I know that God loves each and every one of us, not just as his creations but as His Children; that is why we call him our Heavenly Father.

I know that God loves me more than I can comprehend. 

I believe in God my Heavenly Father, and in his son my Savior Jesus Christ, and in the Holy Ghost. People have accused Mormons of being polytheist; this, while technically accurate, is not true in spirit. We believe that God is a separate being than Jesus, and both are different from the Holy Ghost. However, we worship only one God. It's a little complicated and difficult to describe. The way we usually say it is that God, Jesus, and the Holy Ghost are separate people, but one in purpose and action. 

I don't claim to have a full or complete understanding of God. 1st Corinthians 13:2 "For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as I also am known."