"This is eternal life: that they may know you (Father), the only true God, and the one you have sent - Jesus Christ."
To fulfill our Purpose of loving God with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength, we have to grow in our knowledge of him. Here, we try to understand who God is and who Jesus is by seeing what Scripture says about them.
Churches, and Christians in general, have often misunderstood and confused who God is. You can see evidence of this by viewing some churches statement of faith. Most typically, churches have very little to say about GOD, other than he is a “trinity” of the Father, Son, and Spirit who are all co-equal and co-eternal. There are usually statements about who Jesus is, as well as the role of the Holy Spirit, but these statements of belief are often woefully silent about the Father. Surprising to most Christians is that of the 1300+ times the Greek word for God is used in the New Testament, 98% of the time it is referring to the Father (other occurrences refer to false gods, pagan gods, the unknown god, the stomach, Satan, or Jesus).
How can churches fail to include the Father in a statement of their beliefs when he fills the pages of the Old and New Testaments and is the one almost exclusively called God throughout Scripture?
We hope to clarify from Scripture the differences between God and his Messiah since Scripture clearly makes a distinction. Unfortunately, many claims about who Jesus is are also confused and not found in Scripture but formed in Catholic Church councils from the fourth and fifth centuries. The belief statements formed in these councils were then enforced by those in authority (both government and church) over the next 1300 years. History is very clear about this and will be acknowledged by most Bible scholars. We think it is important to emphasize what Scripture emphasizes by highlighting rather than ignoring our God and Father. This is so important that it is one of our stated Values. We believe it is problematic that many Christians have confused the roles of God and his son so thoroughly that they really know neither. John 17:3, quoted above, tells us that the essence of eternal life is knowing both the Father and the Son.
Obviously, much more could be said about the subject, this is simply an introduction. You may hover over the Scripture reference to view the verse in the ESV.
2 Peter 1:2
“May grace and peace be lavished on you as you grow in the rich knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord!”
Our sole and absolute authority is the inerrant Word of God. By this we mean the most reliable manuscripts available for the 39 books of the Hebrew Old Testament Scriptures and the 27 books of the Greek New Testament Scriptures, which together constitute the canon of the Scriptures. The whole of the Bible, particularly, the New Testament (which depicts life under the new covenant) must be considered the only statement of faith that is authoritative. Even if we were to select only direct quotes from Scripture, this would still be a manmade statement because we selected verses on a limited, and likely biased basis.
One of our stated Values is: “Acceptance of one another on the basis of love despite differing interpretations of Scripture as long as there is willingness to base beliefs on Scripture alone and not tradition, creeds, human authorities, opinions, or majority view.” It is important to let the Bible speak rather than reading into it our own preconceived notions.
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