Tell Us About Your God

By Royce Frederick

Paul accepted the invitation to stand on Mars Hill (the Areopagus) and introduce the living God to the people in Athens, who worshipped idols (Acts 17:16-34). The objects of their worship were easily seen. It was Paul’s task to introduce the invisible, true God. What would you have said? Paul reminds us that:

The true God is UNKNOWN to many people — “for as I was passing through and considering the objects of your worship, I even found an altar with this inscription: TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Therefore, the One whom you worship without knowing, Him I proclaim to you” (17:23). Some people worship “gods” which are merely humans, animals, or objects made by men’s hands. Others worship the living God, but do not worship Him in the ways He has instructed. Acceptable worship of God requires knowledge about Him and knowledge from Him.

The true God is CREATOR of “the world and everything in it” (17:24). If we are amazed by the wisdom of men who build airplanes, cameras, generators, and computers, we should be awe-struck by the wisdom of God who created birds, eyes, lightning, and brains! God’s power and divine wisdom are abundantly evident in the design of the things which He created. (See Rom. 1:20-23).

The true God is LORD “of heaven and earth” (17:24). He rules over all things through Christ (1 Cor. 15:27). Only those who confess Christ as God’s Son and submit to the lordship of God by obeying Christ will find salvation (Jn. 14:6; Acts 4:12; Heb. 5:9).

The true God is a SPIRIT who “...does not dwell in temples made with hands” (17:24). See Jn. 4:24. The beautiful temples of Athens would not be sufficient for Him. God dwells in His church (1 Cor. 3:16) and in each Christian (1 Cor. 6:19; Rom. 8:9).

The true God is INDEPENDENT, “Nor is He worshiped with men’s hands, as though He needed anything...” (17:25). Idols need the help of men’s hands to carve them, dust them, polish them, and protect them from weather and thieves. The situation is reversed with the true and living God. We depend on His help: “ Him we live and move and have our being” (17:28).

The true God is AVAILABLE, “not far from each one of us,” and wants us to “seek...and find Him” (17:27). We can see His handiwork all around us, listen to His words by reading the Bible, and talk to Him in prayer anywhere. He will never forsake His faithful children (1 Pet. 3:10-12; Heb. 13:5).

The true God is RIGHTEOUS and “...will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained…” (17:31). That judge is Jesus, His Son, whom He raised from the dead (17:31; Jn. 5:26-27; 2 Cor. 5:10). God cannot have fellowship with unrighteousness. As we grow up, we begin to understand right and wrong, and we all choose to do wrong at times (Rom. 3:23). But God is also loving and merciful. He has made a way of salvation for us. He “commands all men everywhere to repent” (17:30). Repentance is the decision to turn away from sin and obey God. When a sinner is baptized in water, into the death of Christ (Rom. 6:3), Christ’s death pays the penalty for our sins. So, God is able to make us righteous and remain righteous Himself (Rom. 3:26). The true and living God is marvelous!