July 12 - Message Update

“Does God Exist?” – John 1:1-14 – Pastor Scott

How do we know God exists?

 

God is not affected by time, space or matter. Time, space and matter is what is called a continuum. They all have to come together at the same time. Matter and time but no space – where would you put it? Matter and space but no time – when would you put it? Time and space but no matter – what would you have? Time, space and matter cannot come into existence independently. All have to come into existence at the same time.

 

This is explained in the very first words in the Bible… In the beginning (time), God created the Heavens (space) and the Earth (matter). God creates these and is not limited to these. If God is limited by time, is He really worthy to be worshipped?

If God is limited by space, should He be praised? So, once we recognize that we can never fully understand who God is, then we can move on and see how we can know that God exists. Not only does He exist, He wants you to know Him. God exists and wants you to know Him personally. So, how do we know God exists?

 

1) We see God in His creation (John 1:3-4) Through Him all things were made – God made us from nothing. There were no pre-existing materials. God made us. God made everything! And everything we see cries out to its Creator. Psalm 19:1, The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims His handiwork. Heavens – the intricate design of the universe shows that there is a Creator who is thoughtful and powerful and creative. “declare” – to tell, to make known, to narrate. What are they declaring? The glory of God. In fact, that is why God created us.

 

The Bible says we were created in His image. And images display and glorify the original. God wants the world to be filled with people who reflect who He is. In Isaiah 43, God says that everyone is created for His glory! And Isaiah 6:3 says, “Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of His glory.” You and I and everyone and everything was created by God.

 

To say that everything was created by a big bang is absurd unless you realize God is the One who said BOOM! We are not here by accident. We are not the result of a cosmic coincidence. Everywhere you look, there is evidence of a thoughtful Creator. We get so busy - have you taken the time to look around and see God? His greatest creation is you. Yes – you!

Have you ever taken the time to think about how special it is that you are here? The fact that you can think and understand and breathe. The fact that you are alive and living the life He allows you to live! How do we know God exists? We see God in His creation – everything you see and even you! How else do we know God exists?

 

2) We see God in person. I have heard people say, if God is so great, why doesn’t He come down here to earth and show Himself to us? Well, He did! 2000 years ago! And He was nailed to a cross. (John 1:9-11) Even though He created the world, the people He created did not recognize Him. He was even rejected by the people He chose to prepare the rest of the world for His coming. The entire Old Testament pointed to His coming and He was still rejected.

           

But the fact is Jesus was God in human flesh. True light = Jesus   Isaiah 49:6b – I will make You as a light for the nations, that My salvation may reach to the end of the earth. Some mistakenly think the Old Testament was all about God and the New Testament about Jesus. No, Jesus is all over the Old Testament. The theme of the whole Bible is Jesus! God had planned from so long ago a plan to send Jesus to be a light to the world; to show us God. Jesus came to show the world who God is. Jesus and God are one in essence and nature. Jesus was not just a good man – He was the God man; 100% God. 100% man. God was actually here on earth. Breathing. Drinking. Eating. He came so that eyes could see and ears could hear Him. Jesus was God in human flesh. He was the…never to be duplicated, recreated, imitated or replicated combination of God and man. God actually walked on this earth.

 

God ate food and fed the crowds. God listened to the uneducated and yet taught teachers. God healed the wounded and He was wounded Himself. He lived on this earth and died on this cross. He was buried behind a stone but became our Rock on which we stand. He conquered death and gives us a share of His victory. Make no mistake, Jesus was and is God. And to prove He really was God, He performed miracles. He turned water into wine. He healed the sick, He gave sight to the blind, He walked on water. He did a lot of amazing things during His brief 30 something years on Earth.

 

This is where you can decide once and for all if God really does exist. Lee Strobel (A Case for Christ) was an investigative reporter, trained to find the truth and he was set on proving once and for all that there was no God. He decided the best way to do that was to prove that Jesus did not come back to life. If there’s no resurrection, if Jesus was just a man and did not come back from the dead, then Christianity is a lie! Denying that Jesus actually lived on earth is pointless. He was counted in the census. There were several credible witnesses that said Jesus was here and doing all the things the Bible says. There is evidence that He was convicted and died on the cross. There is proof that He was buried behind a 2-ton stone. So, Lee Strobel set out to prove that Jesus was just an ordinary man and that He did not rise from the dead. Lee was not trying to answer a faith question, he was looking at it from a historical perspective; from the point of view of an investigative journalist.

 

The Gospels – Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John are historical documents making historical claims. Jesus was killed on a cross and buried in a tomb behind a 2-ton stone on a Friday. On Sunday, the stone was rolled away and the body was gone. Then people starting saying they saw Jesus. They talked with Him, they touched Him. The Romans and Jewish leaders desperately wanted to prove that Jesus did not come back from the dead. Because if He did, then He is God! So, what happened? There are four theories:

Swoon – Jesus never died. He passed out and woke up in tomb and then left. The executioners at the cross were experts at killing. No one ever survived a Roman crucifixion. They made sure they did their job. So, the swoon theory – not likely at all

Wrong tomb – the women accidently went to the wrong tomb, a tomb with no body. Maybe - but then the disciples did too? Or Joseph of Arimathea who owned the tomb? If so, the Romans could have just pointed to the correct tomb and that would have stopped the Jesus movement.

Romans stole the bodythe Romans took the body and hid it so no one would come and take the body away and claim Jesus rose from the dead. Then why didn’t they just produce Jesus’ body when everyone was claiming they saw Him?

Followers stole the body – the disciples stole the body. Imagine the disciples, a bunch of scared fishermen and untrained men going up against Roman guards. Then pulling off a 2-ton stone, taking the body and then somehow making Jesus’ body appear to be alive to over 500 witnesses. Not very likely at all! So, what happened to these disciples? Each one went on to die as a martyr. If they really stole the body and it was all a hoax, would they really be willing to die for a hoax? They knew what was true and were willing to die to get the truth out there.

 

Lee Strobel did all his investigation. He read and studied. And interviewed experts in their respective fields. And after he did all his investigative work and when he ran out of excuses…he decided the only decision he could come to was that Jesus really was who He said He was…God. And that He did die and rose from the dead on the third day. Lee Strobel was dead set on proving God did not exist. He did all his homework. He interviewed experts on both sides of the argument. And he walked away realizing that God does indeed exist.

 

So, what is stopping you? If you are not sure that God exists…if you still question what life is all about…I encourage you to try to find the truth.         The sad thing is many people live their lives without ever questioning if there is a God. Or even sadder, they are content with no answer. But I know that if you seek the answer to life’s greatest question – DOES GOD EXIST? – you will find that without a shadow of a doubt that HE DOES! And not only does He exist - He created you, He loves you and He wants to have a personal relationship with you.

 

Verse 11 says that Jesus was rejected. He was not received. But if you read the next verse, it brings hope. (vv.12-13): But to all who did receive Him, who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

 

If you do receive Him…If you do put your faith in Him, you can recognize and claim to be a child of God! Do you realize how crazy and special that is! You are not just an acquaintance. You are family. You are a child of God! And when you make that decision, you are allowed things that those that have not received Him are not allowed. You have special privileges because you are a child of His! You are allowed where others are not! A place in Heaven. Where there is no Covid-19. Where there is no sadness, no pain, no social injustice. A place where you can live for eternity. A place where you will happily shelter in

grace. And none of this would be possible if God did not exist. But it’s up to you to make the decision. Will you ignore His existence? And live for just the short time you have on this earth? Or will you make the choice to give your life to Him and live for eternity in Paradise?