I never cease to be amazed by those who claim to know ‘all about Christianity’, ‘all about the Bible’ and ‘all about God’ and then proceed to demonstrate their entire knowledge comes from a drunken (not having a drink, but drunk) friend in a barely coherent two minute ramble.
For the record, all anyone knows about God; and all anyone knows about Christianity comes directly or indirectly (as in studying and then processing the information) from the Bible. In my experience the untruths regarding God come mainly from poorly understood Bible passages and the untruths about Christianity from a denial of Christian principles.
There have been and are far too many examples of sinful misconduct in Christian circles including a pastor or two. All those examples are examples of non-Christian (non Christ like) conduct. The choicest and most common claim is that pastor “A” had a sexual affair with a much younger person (female or male, it doesn’t matter) other than the miscreant’s spouse. No Christian teaching encourages or even allows such conduct. No Christian teaching encourages or allows ‘covering up’ misconduct.
Do Christians misbehave? Of course! Does this offend God and cause Him pain? Yes. Is this unforgivable or evidence of not being a Christian? No. Christianity is limited to those who have asked for God’s forgiveness, worship God and follow His teachings. Christianity is not earned (helping little old ladies across the street, kissing babies, giving to ‘good causes’, not going to movies or a varieties of dos and don’ts) but by the gift of God. But it must be asked for directly and knowing such asking obligates one to obedience.
So, who is God? God is the single power behind all discernible powers in the Universe. God is the sole Creator of all things, material and forces – including scientific ‘laws’ – in the Universe. God is the sole concept source, designer, constructor and maintainer of the Universe and all therein.
God is the entirety of the Trinity. The Trinity is Father, Son and Holy Spirit (Holy Ghost in the wording of the King James Translation). These three are called ‘persons’ (again in English dating from long ago). I don’t particularly like the term, but I haven’t come up with anything better to my thinking. In fact, the usage ‘three persons’ suggests that God is split into thirds at times. Not so. They are One. If that is puzzling, it’s puzzling to Christian Thinkers and Theologians forever. Much in the same way Dr. Einstein’s “Relativity’ would be puzzling to Og, the cave man who invented the inclined plane and everyone thought he was a genius.
Please note: The above qualities are not limited. There is no ‘except for’ limitation. He does Himself ‘limit’ Himself – a weakness of human language and thinking – in the sense He chooses to refrain from some actions for His own purposes. He does not ‘fix’ certain problems as they arise, as He has plans which He will carry out when He gets good and ready.
Of importance: God’s plan supersedes any human evaluation. When the weather is too cold or too hot, God knows what He is doing. When one has the blue kluds, the flying kluds or covid or cancer, God knows what He is doing. Your or my approval is not required. That is hard to accept (I don’t do so well all the time) but is easier when one realizes God really does know what He is about. That in turn gets easier when one knows Him.
God is Eternal. God was not ‘born’. (Jesus Christ as a man was born, but as part of the God Head, Jesus did not begin existence at the moment recorded as His birth.) So God has existed forever. God will not die. Jesus died, but only as a specific case. So God (all three ‘persons’ will live forever. And understand, God did not live yesterday or last week or when He gave Moses the Ten Commandments, but He lives then just as He lives at this moment.
Going back to the third paragraph about Christian misbehavior. When forgiven by God, He forgives totally. All one’s sins. Past, present and future. As He lives Eternally, all of one’s life is God’s ‘right now’.
This also removes all the problem of “Why did God allow (whatever) to happen? That was wrong!” How many times have we – all us humans – said “If I’d have known then what I know now…” God knows now what we’ll know in the future.
To fair, some of this is hard to take. Hard to accept. Hard to believe. No question. Much of that is due to a faulty comprehension of God. God is not a human or humanish being or an alien who is really, really smart and knows a lot and has a lot of tricks. God is the only self existing being in the Universe and has alway lived.
By the way, one doesn’t have to understand this all at once or even understand it all. If you do not know Him, it is enough to know He is on your side and will accept you – on His terms – warts and all. He’ll accept you – on His terms – even if you are perfect.