“There Is One God”

“And Father of all, who is over all, and thorough all, and in all” (Eph. 4:6). We have come to the last of the “seven ones;” those things given to enable man to keep the unity of the Spirit. When Paul declared there is “one God and Father,” we are to understand that for men to be unified, they must be unified in that which they worship for there is only one true object of worship: God. When Satan tempted Jesus, he promised Him all the kingdoms of the world if He would “fall down and worship” him. Jesus responded, “It is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord the God, and him only shalt thou serve” (Mt. 4:10; Dt. 6:13). These words of Christ remind man that neither men nor angels are lawful objects of adoration (Acts 10:25f; Rev. 19:10; 22:8f).

There is scarcely a created thing which man has not sought to worship including the sun, moon, stars, mountains, beasts, birds and serpents. Paul’s spirit was stirred within him in Athens when he saw the city wholly given to idolatry (Acts 17:16). Idolatry was the curse of ancient Israel who, although they had seen ample demonstrations that Jehovah was God, turned again and again to worship the gods of the nations around them. They were without excuse, but then all who are idolaters equally are with excuse. They “exchanged the truth of God for a lie and worshipped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever …” (Rom. 1:25). Isaiah wrote in very caustic language of the foolishness of idolatry (Isa. 44:9-17). WHY SHOULD WE WORSHIP GOD? We should worship God for He alone is our Creator. Paul quotes from a heathen poet who said, in truth, “In him we live and move and have our being” (Acts 17:28). The Psalmist wrote that man (and creature) depends upon God when he said, “These all wait for thee that thou mayest give them their meat in due season. Thou givest unto them, they gather; Thou openest thy hand, they are satisfied with good. Thou hidst thy face, they are troubled; Thou takest away their breath, they die, and return to their dust” (Ps. 104:26-29). When God created Adam, He breathed into his nostrils the breath of life (Gen. 2:7). Only God has power to create life. No created thing can do what God did when He made our world. Thus the four living creatures and 24 elders gave worship to God saying, “Worthy art thou, our Lord and our God, to receive the glory, and the honor and the power: for thou didst create all things, and because of thy will they were and were created” (Rev. 4:9-11).

God is to be worshipped because our world revolves and is maintained through His care and oversight for He “upholds all things by the word of his power” (Heb. 1:3). There is no created thing or being which can keep our world in order and motion. We depend upon the world’s order for our years, seasons, as well as for any proposed mission to outer space by our astronauts. Our watches and clocks are dependent upon God’s hand for these things to continue. God is to be worshipped because of His eternal provisions for man. The Lamb was praised by the 24 elders who sang a new song saying, “worthy art thou to take the book, and to open the seals thereof, for thou wast slain and didst purchase unto God with thy blood men of every tribe, and tongue, and people and nation” concluding with every created thing saying, “Unto him that sitteth on the throne, and unto the Lamb, be the blessing, and the honor and the glory and the dominion, for ever and for ever” (Rev. 5:9, 13).

Since God is the only true object of worship, He and He alone, has the right to determine what worship He will receive for “God is a Spirit and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth” (Jn. 4:24). To truly worship God, we must worship Him as He directs, not as we determine. Let us worship God is His way. Only thus can we maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace!

Jim McDonald

Bible Lectureship

(March 17-20, 2024)

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