AWED by nature, many people are compelled to believe in a supernatural force, a deity. Are you impressed by the complexity of the universe? Do you marvel at our planet’s natural wonders and the intricate design of the human body?
If so, perhaps you too have been persuaded to believe in a divine power. Some religions teach that such an entity resides in the mountains, the trees, the sky, and other features of the physical universe. Others believe that the spirits of ancestors, some benevolent and some evil, join in an amalgamation of mysterious forces, collectively forming one Supreme Being—God!
In either case, a common belief is that this supernatural force is devoid of personality. Some people find it hard to believe that God has thoughts, emotions, purpose, and desires. Is God a real person? The Bible, one of the oldest sacred books in wide circulation today, provides a clear answer.
The Bible teaches that man was created to mirror God’s attributes. Genesis 1:27 says that “God created human beings, making them to be like himself.”—Today’s English Version.
Clearly, those words do not mean that the first humans were exact replicas of God. The Bible says that God is an invisible spirit, while humans are made from tangible earthly elements. (Genesis 2:7; John 4:24) Aside from that basic difference between God and humans, a good look into human qualities should shed some light on the true nature of God.
Humans have the ability to exercise power and to perform well-calculated and deliberate actions. These actions can be motivated by such attributes as kindness, thinking ability, practical wisdom, and a sense of justice. Humans have emotions ranging from tender love to hatred and anger. Various combinations of these attributes make us slightly different from one another. Yes, each of us has a unique personality. Humans are persons.
Would it make sense for God to create us as complex persons if he himself were an impersonal force gliding aimlessly in a spiritual dimension? If humans are made in God’s image, then God’s nature would in many ways be similar to human nature. Consider the following.
God has a personal name. The Bible says at Isaiah 42:8: “I am Jehovah. That is my name.” God wants his name to be known. The Bible also says: “May Jehovah’s name become blessed from now on and to time indefinite. From the rising of the sun until its setting Jehovah’s name is to be praised.” (Psalm 113:2, 3)
Accordingly, by using God’s name often, his worshippers treat him as a person.
God is unique. The Bible teaches that God is indeed unique. (1 Corinthians 8:5, 6) “You are indeed great, O Sovereign Lord Jehovah; for there is no other like you, and there is no God except you,” says the Bible. (2 Samuel 7:22) The Scriptures also describe Jehovah as “the true God in the heavens above and on the earth beneath. There is no other.”—Deuteronomy 4:39.
Jehovah God hates badness. Only a person can feel hate. The Bible tells us that the Creator hates such things as “lofty eyes, a false tongue, and hands that are shedding innocent blood, a heart fabricating hurtful schemes, feet that are in a hurry to run to badness, a false witness that launches forth lies, and anyone sending forth contentions among brothers.” (Proverbs 6:16-19) Notice that God detests human behavior that results in hurt to other humans. From this, we learn that God cares about our welfare and that he hates the things that cause us harm.
Jehovah is a loving God. The Bible explains that God loves “the people of this world” very much. (John 3:16, Contemporary English Version) It portrays him as having the personality of a tender father who wants the best for his human children. (Isaiah 64:8) Humans can reap many blessings by recognizing God’s position as their loving Father.
You Can Be God’s Friend
Clearly, the Bible teaches that the Creator is an individual, who has a name and a personality. He has the ability to exercise power and perform calculated and deliberate actions motivated by such lofty attributes as kindness, wisdom, and a sense of justice. He is not remote or inaccessible. On the contrary, he says: “I, Jehovah your God, am grasping your right hand, the One saying to you, ‘Do not be afraid. I myself will help you.’”—Isaiah 41:13.
God has a purpose for mankind. The Bible says: “The righteous themselves will possess the earth, and they will reside forever upon it.” (Psalm 37:29) Knowing that Jehovah is unique and has a distinct identity makes it easier for us to pursue a personal relationship with him and enjoy the blessings he offers to those who become his friends.—Deuteronomy 6:4, 5; 1 Peter 5:6, 7.
● Does God have a personal name?—Isaiah 42:8.
● Are there many gods?—1 Corinthians 8:5, 6.
● Can humans have a personal relationship with the true God?—1 Peter 5:6, 7.