THE ATTRIBUTES OF GOD MOST HIGH, AS TAUGHT IN THE HOLY SCRIPTURES
THE Holy Scriptures of the Old Testament and the New declare that the Existence of God is evident from that of the universe which He has created, and that man's conscience and reason also bear witness to their Divine Creator (Psalms 19:1-4; Acts 17:24-29). As the existence of the Necessarily Existent One (واجب الْوجود) is thus self-evident, Scripture states that the denial of God's existence is the outcome of wilful ignorance and wicked folly (Psalms 14:1; 53:1; Romans 1:19-23). The Bible tells us that God is One (Deuteronomy 4:35, 39; 6:4; Isaiah 44:8; 45:5; 46:9; Mark 12:29; John 17:3; 1 Corinthians 8:4; Ephesians 4:6); that He is a Spirit (John 4:24) and invisible (John 1:18; 1 Timothy 6:15, 16); that He is Infinite, Eternal, and Unchangeable (Psalms 90:2; 102:24-27; James 1:17); Omnipresent and Omniscient (Psalms 139:1-12; Jeremiah 23:23, 24; Acts 17:27, 28); Almighty and All-wise (Genesis 17:1; Job 12:7-10, 13; Psalms 104:24; Isaiah 40:12-18; 1 John 3:20).
In like manner God is represented as Holy (Revelation 19:2; 21:8; 1 Samuel 2:2; Psalms 22:3; 145:17; Isaiah 6:3; Revelation 4:8), Just and Righteous (Numbers 23:19; Deuteronomy 32:4; Psalms 33:4, 5; Isaiah 26:7; 45:21; Romans 2:5-11; 2 John 1:9; Revelation 15:3; 16:5-7), Compassionate, Merciful, Long-suffering (Exodus 34:6; Psalms 9:8-10; Lamentations 3:22, 23; Ezekiel 33:11; Matthew 5:45; John 3:16; 1 John 4:16), the Creator and Preserver of all His creatures (Genesis 1:1; 1 Samuel 2:7; Psalms 33:6; 37:23-25; 104; Matthew 6:31, 32; 10:29-31; Romans 11:36; Revelation 6:11).
These are some of the many glorious Attributes which the Bible tells us belong to the One True God. All the rest are summed up in the statement that He is perfect in His Nature, His Knowledge, His Teaching, His Doings (Deuteronomy 32:4; 2 Samuel 22:31; Job 36:4; 37:16; Psalms 18:30; 19:7; Matthew 5:48).
It cannot therefore be denied that all these statements which the Bible contains in reference to God Most High and to His Most Excellent Attributes are such as our reason and conscience confirm when they hear them, because they are worthy of the Most Merciful Creator. Nor can such knowledge in reference to God have been attained by men apart from Divine inspiration (إلهام) and guidance. For a perusal of the works of the wisest philosophers of old, even of those of Plato and Aristotle, will show us that not even these men ever taught any such lofty views as these about the Divine Nature. They did not clearly teach God's Unity, His Personality, His Holiness. Especially in this last matter, the doctrine of God's Holiness, the Bible differs from the teaching of all other faiths, ancient or modern.
When men who are really pious and desirous of knowing God and of doing His will prayerfully study the Bible, then the entrance of the Word of God (كلام الله) into their hearts gives them spiritual light (Psalms 119:105, 130), and enables them to find God (Deuteronomy 4:29; Jeremiah 29: 13; John 7:17), and to know His will. Fear and love of God are produced in their hearts by the power of God's Holy Spirit (Romans 4:5), and they receive grace to enable them to become obedient to their Maker. Their hearts are changed, they receive new spiritual birth (John 1:12, 13; 3:5, 6), and through belief in Jesus Christ they become a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17). They learn to hate sin and to love righteousness, to flee from evil and cleave to goodness and godliness. For the Holy Scriptures teach us that God is Holy and Just, able to punish those who, like Pharaoh, harden their hearts against Him, but a loving, compassionate, merciful, and benevolent Father to all those who truly repent and turn from their sins to serve Him in newness of life. Hence from even the few passages of the Bible which we have referred to in this chapter, the Truth-seeker, if he prayerfully studies them, will begin to see that the Holy Scriptures really satisfy the conditions of a True Revelation. This will, please God, become still more evident to him in the following chapters.
The New Testament teaches us that a true knowledge of God can be obtained only through the teaching of God's Holy Spirit, who is always ready to aid and help us. The perfect revelation of God is given in the Lord Jesus Christ, who has Himself said, "He that hath seen Me hath seen the Father" (John 14:9), and in Him alone, because He alone is the Word (كَلِمَة) of God.