The Triune God is the only True and Living God.
There is much confusion today when people speak about God. You will hear them talk about the God of the Christians, the god of the Moslems, the great spirit of the Indians, and so on; Some think that the Jehovah Witness, the Mormons, the modern day Jews and the like believe in the same God as we Christians do. People think that the different religions are nothing more than different paths to the hereafter. Nothing is farther from the truth.
There is even confusion about "holy books". Many religions have a book they consider their “holy book”, such as the Koran of the Muslim, the Bugdavita of the Hindus, the Book of Mormons, or the New World Translation of the Jehovah Witness; and the list goes on. But the “holy books” of these people are either only man's thoughts or perversions of the Bible. Those who want to change the meaning of God’s Word had better pay heed to Revelation 22:18-19, “For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.” God is quite clear He doesn’t want anyone tampering with the Bible. Only the Holy Bible of the Christians claims to be and IS the true inerrant Word of the one and only true God, the Triune God.
What’s so dangerous about these other so-called "holy books"? Only the Holy Bible has the ability and power to show a person the way to God and heaven. All the other books and religions are nothing more than "do or don’t" books that claim by doing “good works” you can work your way to heaven. We need to able to defend our beliefs so no one will be able to lead us astray. Let us now take a close look at our Holy Bible and let the true and only living God direct and guide us to the truth.
Why do we Christians believe the Holy Bible is God’s Word and THE ONLY TRUE HOLY BOOK for the whole world. First there is no other book like it on earth. All the other so-called “holy books” claim MEN as authors: Mohammed dictated the Koran; Confucius wrote the Analects of the Chinese, and so on. The Holy Scriptures as we know them today are 66 different books written in two different time eras by over 30 different people of different sorts and cultures. These penmen wrote in different languages and were as different from each other as any people could be. These holy men through whom God gave us the Holy Scriptures could not have plotted with each other because their lives were scattered over 1600 years. You would think that a book written under these circumstances would result in chaos and disaster. Still perfect harmony exits in all that was written by these holy writers, and there is a wonderful unity in the Holy Bible. Did this happen by chance?
There is only one answer. Some One other than man was the Author of this one of a kind, wonderful, fantastic Book. Only One with far greater intelligence than man could plan such a collection of books. Our God, the only true living God, tells us how this happened, “…holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.” [II Peter 1:21]. God was the Mind directing His people [namely the prophets, apostles, and evangelists] to write and to speak everything He wanted us to know. And the result is the Holy Bible – the truth from cover to cover.
Secondly we believe the Bible is God’s Word because He tells us it is. St. Paul tells us as he did the Thessalonians, “when you received the word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men, but as it actually is, the word of God, which is at work in you who believe.” [I Thess 2:13]. How much of the Bible is God’s Word – all of it. The Holy Scriptures are everything that is written in the 66 books of the Bible, from cover to cover. Unfortunately, even among Christians, some feel that the Bible only "contains" God’s Word; they think there are mans' stories and ideas intermingled with God’s Word. But God is very clear; Jesus tells us, “… the scripture cannot be broken” [John 10:35]. The Greek word for “cannot be broken” means “cannot in any way be destroyed, abolished, or done away with”; that is, no part of the Bible is to be “set aside”. Every page, word, and letter is God’s writing and must be treated as such. St. Timothy under the inspiration of God reminds us, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:” [II Tim 3:16]. Edward Koehler, a Lutheran theologian, writes, “Since all Scripture is given by the inspiration of God, all Scripture is the word of God … We must not criticize it, or find fault with it. There are no myths, no mistakes, no antiquated ideas in it, but it is true and inerrant in all it teaches.” St. John writing about God’s Word says[John 17:17], “…thy word is truth.” God, our heavenly Father, tells us everything in the Bible is true, and we can trust completely everything it tells us. No greater comfort can a Christian have. When God tells you in His Holy Word [Jn 3:16], “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”, you know it’s true and you as a believer in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior are going to spend eternity in heaven with God.
We also believe the Bible is God’s Word because it has stood the test of time. All the prophecies in the bible have been fulfilled; everything God said would happen – did happen. When God tells you something, you can trust Him that it will be that way. No other book or person can say that. The Bible has and continues even today to withstand all types of attacks. In times past, many other religions and heresies attacked, but the Word of God prevailed. Even today science, “higher criticism”, Islam, and others are trying to discredit the bible, but to no avail. Jesus assures us, “…the scripture cannot be broken;” [John 10:35], and “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.” [Matt 24:36]. Lastly let us not forget the blessed influence it has had on society and life. The world is a better place because of our beloved Holy Bible, God’s Word to all mankind.
He is a real Person
This same book, the Holy Bible of Christians, God's true letter to all people in the world, is the only Book that reveals to us the one true living God and gives us a picture of Him. He is a Spirit; no one can see Him. Yet in His Word He tells us about Himself. First we learn is that He is REAL, not like the imaginary and/or man-made gods of the other religions. Our God, the Triune God, the only living God, speaking through Isaiah [6:9] tells us in uncertain terms " I am God and there is no other: I am God, and there is none like Me." When God sent Moses to Pharaoh [Exodus 3:14], He said "I AM THAT I AM: and He said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you." He calls Himself “I AM”; how else can you describe some One who always is, from eternity. He existed before time; and now in time, He exists in past, today, and future at the same time. He is everywhere always, watching over the world and especially His children - us Christians. Wherever you go, God is there, watching over you. St. Peter tells us [I Pet 5:7], “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.” Christians are His children; He wants only the best for you.
Notice He called Himself "I". The Triune God is a living Being, a Person, having consciousness, intellect, emotions, and will. He was not created as was the world and all other things - and other things includes all those idols and false gods of those other religions. Koehler (p.40) writes, "His existence does not depend on someone else, but He exists of Himself and by Himself, He is the one and only Absolute and Supreme Being." How and when He came into being, we do not know, but we do know from His Bible that He made all things from nothing and He is our REAL and living God.
With this little one letter word "I", God tells us there is no such thing as pantheism, which is a great part of many eastern religions such Hinduism, Taoism, and Buddhism. Those dabbling in yoga (which includes reciting the word "yom" over and over) are partaking in pantheism. The word "pantheism" is made up of two words "pan" which means “all” and "theos" which means "god" thus "all is god". Pantheists believe that God is not a Person, but a force in nature. Those familiar with the Star Wars movie may remember the statement “the force be with you”; this movie is introducing pantheism to the public and our children, and they don’t even know it. It is true that God is “omnipresent" He exists always everywhere at the same. God speaking through Jeremiah (23:24) says," Can anyone hide in secret places so that I cannot see him?" ... "Do not I fill heaven and earth?" ... God is everywhere, BUT everything is not God as pantheism tries to teach. But what's so bad about pantheism? The greatest and most serious problem is that it denies the existence of God. Nature and the universe are the supreme, and are to be revered and worshipped. Furthermore Pantheism teaches "God is all, God is good; all is good". According to this, anything done in life is good. In pantheism, how can one know the difference between good and evil? We should all be forever thankful that our God has given us the Holy Bible where God clearly tells us what is good and what is evil and bad.
One can see it is essential he stays away from Hinduism, yoga, and so on. Incidentally the Christian Scientist religion is nothing more than westernized Buddhism. The New Age group, another big movement in the USA, basically says, "Who is God? Look in the mirror you are god! " Everyone can see why to stay as far away as possible from the New Age cult. All these false religions are the devil’s tools to destroy true faith and try to get Christians to walk away from the only true living god.
Some ask what harm is there if a person simply dabbles just a little in some of these unchristian religions. Anti-Christian religions and thoughts are poison to Christians and will eventually lead to loss of faith and eternal death. How much poison can a person take before it kills him? Likewise how long can a Christian dabble with unchristian thoughts before they destroy his faith and lead him to the pits hell and everlasting destruction? God says to His children [II Cor 14-18] “Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? What harmony is there between Christ and Belial ? What does a believer have in common with an unbeliever? What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: ‘I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people. Therefore come out from them and be separate, says the Lord. Touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you. I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.’ Let us stay with God where we are safe.
He is Triune
From God’s Word we also learn that He is “triune”; the “Holy Trinity” as we call Him. The word “triune” is made up of two words – “tri” meaning “three” and “uno” meaning “one”. Koehler in Luther’s Small Catechism teaches, “the only true God is the Triune God: Father, Son and Holy Ghost, three distinct Persons in one divine Being, or Essence.” Some ask how can we believe this since the word “trinity or triune” is nowhere mentioned in the Bible. Yet God’s Word clearly teaches that He is Triune. We know from the Bible that each Person of the Trinity is God. Each Person is NOT 1\3 God, but 100% all God; each person is NOT a phase or manifestation of God [EG: a man is a husband, a father, and a brother – same person but three different titles] but each Person of the Trinity is a distinct separate Person. When He appeared after His resurrection, Jesus said to Mary, [Jn 20:17]“… I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.” – Jesus tells us the Father is God. At another time when Jesus appeared to His disciples, Thomas said to Him, [Jn 20:28]“…My Lord and my God.” – Thomas shows us that Jesus is God. In the account of Ananias and Sapphire, St. Peter asks Ananias, [Acts 5:3] “…how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit…”. Then he says, [Acts 5:4] “… You have not lied to men but to God.” St. Peter here shows us that the Holy Ghost is God. So we see that each Person of the Trinity is God, but other verses in Holy Scripture teach us that there is only one God: [Deut 6:4] “Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God is one Lord”; I Cor 8:4] “…there is none other God but one”
There are other verses that clearly show that God is “triune”. In first verse of the very first book of the Bible we see the Trinity, [Gen 1:1] “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.” The Hebrew word used here for God [Elohim] happens to be plural; it’s like saying “They created”. Here we see the plurality of Persons within the Godhead. In Genesis 1:26-27 we read, “And God said, Let US make man in OUR image … So God created man in His OWN IMAGE, in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them.” Notice God said “Let US, in OUR” and not “Let me, in my”. Some try to say that this is simply God speaking to His angels about the creation, but if they would carefully read verse 27, they would see that explanation is not correct. If God was speaking to the angels and said “Let Us make man in Our image”, then man would have been created in the image of God AND ANGELS. But we know that is not so because in next verse God says He created man in His OWN IMAGE. Again He is showing us the plurality of Persons in the Godhead. From the Old Testament we learn there are several Persons in the Godhead; now in the New Testament we find there are three Persons in the Holy Trinity and we are told who they are. In the GREAT COMMISSION, God speaking through Matthew [28:19] says, “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost”. Notice it reads “in the NAME of”, not “in the NAMES”, of the Father and Son and Holy Ghost. We are to baptize in the name of the Triune God [one God, three Persons]. Human reason cannot grasp the mystery of the Holy Trinity, but we believe because God’s Word teaches it.
As mentioned earlier, today many people believe that various religions are simply different paths to God. But the Triune God is THE ONLY TRUE LIVING GOD. St. Paul confirms this [I Cor 8:4] “… we know that an idol is nothing in the world, and that there is none other God but one.” Anyone who claims to believe in God but does not believe in the Triune God, is putting his faith in an idol. The goal of all who believe or claim to believe in God is to live with Him in heaven forever. Jesus, Who is God, tells ALL PEOPLE (not just Christians) how to get there, [Jn 14:6] “… I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” He says I AM THE WAY and NO MAN goes to God without Him. Jesus also gives this warning, [Matt 10:32] “Whosoever therefore shall confess Me before men, him will I confess also before My Father which is in heaven. 33. But whosoever shall deny Me before men, him will I also deny before My Father which is in heaven.” Anyone who rejects Jesus, as God, as Lord and Savior, who denies Him before men, will never be with God in heaven. Those who do not agree with this either do not understand or believe the bible, or at worst are calling Him a liar; but God’s children know God does not lie.
Let’s take a closer look at some of those other religions so we will know why it is crucial that all Christians stay away from them. The Eastern religions [Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism, and others like these] willfully and emphatically deny the Holy Trinity and that Jesus is God and the only Savior. Those who believe and join these religions have forfeited heaven and are on their way to hell. Muslims [Islam] and modern day Jews [Judaism] claim to believe in God but they also deny the Triune God and that Jesus is God and Savior; their destination is hell.
Some religions look and sound Christian but are not; Unitarian Universalists [so call themselves “unitarian” so all will know they are not “trinitarian”], Mormons, and Jehovah Witness also deny the Trinity and that Jesus is the God of all creation and thusly forfeit heaven. Many think that all you have to do is believe in a supreme being of some type, be sincere in your faith, and try to live a good life, and you will go to heaven. But the Bible is clear, JESUS IS THE ONLY WAY TO GOD AND HEAVEN. St. Luke verifies this truth [Acts 4:12] “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” And St Paul tells us how we are saved [Rom 10:9] “That if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” Those who believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God (the 2nd Person of the Holy Trinity), that He is God and the Lord and Savior of all people, those will be saved and will live forever with God in heaven. All the others are walking down the path to hell.
He created all things
God’s Word shows us that the Holy Bible is the only true “Holy Book” and that the Triune God is the only true living God. It also gives us answers regarding the beginning of the earth and life itself. Scientists want us to believe the Big Bang Theory and evolution which claim that millions of years ago there was absolutely nothing but a small speck of matter in space [smaller than the eye can see] which for some reason exploded. This is the so-called BIG BANG. This explosion created gases that expanded and continue still today. Over millions of years these gases cooled and formed planets, while others became stars, and so on. Over millions more years, simply by chance chemicals reacted together and one-celled life appeared on earth, which over millions of years evolved into fish, then to land animals, then birds, and finally monkeys into men. This is the false teaching and theory that is being taught to our children in every school in the country.
But God tells in His word what really happened. In the first verse of the Holy Bible we read [Gen 1:1] “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.” There was no Big Bang or supercontinent Pangea which over millions of years evolved into the continents we see today. The Triune God created the earth and universe and all things out of nothing simply by speaking; He said LET THERE BE LIGHT, and there WAS LIGHT. The universe and all things were brought into existence by God’s word. [Heb 11:3] confirms this, “Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.” In six 24-hour days He created everything we see today, including man. On the sixth day [Gen 2:7] “And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.” The scientists say that everything came into existence by itself by chance; the bible shows us the Triune God, the only God, created all things, including man as he is today. There are even some who try to say it was a little of each. But the simple fact is this – there is no way that anyone can believe both evolution and biblical creation; it is either one or the other. If a Christian truly believes God and His Word, there is no way he can accept the false teachings and fairy tales with which these scientists are trying to brainwash our children and us.
He created heaven and hell
Besides all of the creation we can see, God made two places we can’t see, but nevertheless they are real places. We are speaking of heaven and hell - real places where all mankind will spend eternity. Those who do not believe in God (called atheists), and unfortunately some Christians, don’t believe these places really exist. But their beliefs don’t change the fact that they’re real places. Many people think that life leaves the body and the person dies, the body is put into the ground, and that’s it. Some eastern religions teach that one dies in this life, and then depending how good or bad he was in this life, he returns in another life as a bug or a prince; this is called reincarnation. Unitarian Universalists believe that all people go to heaven. But it’s very clear in the God’s Word that these places exit. Many verses confirm this: [Matt 6:9] “After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven …”; [Heb 9:24] “For Christ did not enter a man-made sanctuary that was only a copy of the true one; he entered heaven itself …”; [II Cor 5:1] “Now we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands.” One day we Christians will be in heaven with God and Jesus. For those who want no part of Jesus as Savior, God also has a place: [Lk 16:22] “…the rich man also died, and was buried; And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments …”; [II Pet 2:4] “For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but sent them to hell …”. Believe it or not, heaven and hell are real places, and all people are going to live forever in one or the other.
The Bible teaches that at death, the soul immediately leaves the body and goes either to heaven or to hell; those who believe that Jesus Christ is their Lord and Savior go to heaven, and those reject Him and His free gift of salvation go to hell. There is no purgatory where a person goes to be “purged” of his sins. The Bible teaches only two places – the narrow gate to heaven or the wide gate to hell, [Matt 7:13-14] “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” Jesus Himself also says to us, [Jn 10:9] “I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved…”. And St. John reminds ALL PEOPLE, [Jn 3:36] “He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.”
Besides being omnipresent, God lives in a special place where all Christians look forward to spending eternity with Him – this place is heaven; a place of perfect bliss where [Rev 21:4] “God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.” And He is very clear that the only way to get there by trusting in Jesus as Lord and Savior.
He saved us
God through His Holy Word teaches many truths we would otherwise never know. No one was here except the Triune God when the earth and universe were formed. Men simply have to basically guess how all came about; but God KNOWS because He made everything.
The Bible is more than a history book, and God also tells us why He gave us the Bible, [II Tim 3:15-17] “… the holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” First the bible teaches us that the way to heaven is through faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior; secondly it teaches all people how to live a godly life.
In the Bible the Gospel is the “good news” telling all Jesus did to open heaven for all believers.St Paul tells all people [Rom 1:16] “I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes…”; the Gospel [god – good & spel – story] is the good news of the love of God regarding what He has done and still does today for the salvation of all people. In the beginning He created man perfect, and man would have lived forever with God had he not disobeyed God and sinned and brought death to himself and to all mankind. Man after this was no longer perfect but had a corrupt nature leading him to a life of sin and evil. No longer was man able to live the perfect life God demanded and so was cast out of the presence of the one and only true and holy Triune God. [Rom 6:23] “For the wages of sin is death:” So God sent His only-begotten Son Jesus Christ to earth to be born as a Man and to live the sinless perfect life man was not able to live. Then this same Jesus took the sins of the whole world upon Himself, went to the cross, and there died for the sins of all people freeing them from death, hell and the devil. Jesus Christ rose three days later from the dead to show all mankind that God reconciled the world to Himself and for Jesus sake forgave the sins of all people of all time. St. John tells us, [I Jn 2:2] “And He is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.” By rising from the dead Jesus opened the gates of heaven, and those who trust in Him as their Lord and Savior can once again be in the presence of God and live forever with Him in heaven. Jesus says, [Jn 14:1-3] “"Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.”
At first it appears that there are many choices when it comes to our spiritual lives. Some think it’s like a religion supermarket where you shop around until you find the one that best fits your lifestyle and needs. But once you know the truth, you will find you have only two choices; either you put your faith and trust in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior and make your home with the one and only God, the Triune God, or get ready to spend eternity in hell with the devil. The Holy Bible is truly the only HOLY BOOK and the Triune God is the only TRUE GOD. He is God the Father Who made you and provides for you every day of your life; He is God the Son, Jesus Christ, Who redeemed you and took away your sins so you can be with Him; He is God the Holy Ghost Who brought you to God and helps you live a godly life. May He be your God and Savior, Amen.