Knowing God, knowing Jesus

I guess, my new question is… if God is God, Jesus is God and the Holy Spirit is God as well then, isn’t knowing one the same as knowing them all. 

As a monotheistic religion, God is God. Sure, there are different facets of God, different experiences of God so that he can reach people where they are at in whatever they need, but ultimately, to know one would be to know all. Sure, not understanding all of God would lead to you missing out on aspects of God’s love… but, if God is one, then knowing some of God is still knowing God. 

Otherwise, the idea of Christianity being a monotheistic religion would be wrong because they would be 3 separate entities and therefore 3 different Gods. 


  • God exists in three persons.  So, while they all are the one God in essence, they are individuals.  That would mean that they each have individual personalities, while having the same character.  Yet Jesus said there was a link between knowing Him and knowing the Father.

Matthew 11:27

All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him.

John 8:19

Then said they unto him, Where is thy Father? Jesus answered, Ye neither know me, nor my Father: if ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also.

John 14:7

If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.

John 14:9-10

Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works.

I’ve just started reading a book entitled, “Beautiful Outlaw” by John Eldredge.  It was recommended to me by my son, and he has found the concept presented life transforming.  It’s all about knowing Jesus, but not just conceptually.  Rather, it’s knowing him as a three dimensional person – with real, individual personality.  His humanity really brings that out.  Knowing more about the individual personality of the Father and of the Holy Spirit is more difficult. But, as you read especially about Jesus’ interaction with them, you can get a bit of an idea about their personalities as well.

The key thing is John 14:6 “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” If you want to really know the Father, you need to come to know the Son.

Salvation of the Jews

Were Old Testament believers made acceptable to God through their keeping the Law?  Are all Jews saved and going to heaven?

Paul recognised that many, if not most, of his countrymen were on their way to Hell.  This burdened him greatly (Romans 10:1-4).  He acknowledges that:

  • Some did not believe (Romans 3:3)
  • All Jews and Gentiles are under sin (Romans 3:9,23)
  • The Law doesn’t justify any.  It condemns (Romans 3:19-20)
  • Salvation comes through faith for both Jews and Gentiles (Romans 3:27-30)

Warped beliefs

Is it the fault of a loving God that those with warped beliefs are believing the wrong thing?

Adam and Eve apparently believed the wrong thing about God and the reason why there were not to eat of the fruit of the tree of life.  Or, at least they doubted.  Is it surprising then, that other people would do the same?  Did that happen because God didn’t love them?  He created the universe, Earth and the garden for them.  He visited with them personally every day.  That would seem to be pretty good evidence that He really cared for them.  He gave them the freedom to choose.  Not some artificial thing (such as elections in Russia, China or North Korea), but genuine freedom, allowing them to choose something other than Himself.  Of course, without that, choosing Him wouldn’t mean much.

Is it possible to know what the truth is so that we can know that we are believing in the right thing?

This requires God revealing Himself to us.  And, He has done so, through creation (Romans 1:19,20; Psalm 19), Jesus Christ (Hebrews 1:2), prophets (Hebrews 1:1) and closely related to that, the Scriptures (2 Peter 1:20,21).

How can a loving God send people to Hell?

Let’s say that you really loved the people in your street, and wanted the very best for them.  Imagine you had a family: a wife and kids that you dearly loved.  Thinking about the people in your street, what if one of them was a rapist, used vile language and was dealing in drugs.  Would that person be one that you would welcome into your home without any conditions?

God is a loving God, holy and just.  He wants everyone to be with him in heaven, but for heaven to be what it is, sin cannot be allowed to come in.  And that is what would happen if he allowed sinners in without their sin being removed.

Of course, that leaves us with a problem, given that all of us have come short of God’s perfect holiness, and thereby have sin in our lives.  (Romans 3)  Just adding good deeds isn’t going to remove the sin.  We can reduce the amount of sin that we are committing today and into the future, but that doesn’t do anything to change our past record, and even when we are trying our best, we are still going to come short.  (Titus 3:5)

God was fully aware of this dilemma, and He had a “fix” for the problem: Jesus Christ would become a man, take our sins upon Himself, and accept the appropriate punishment for them.  (Isaiah 53:5,6; 2 Corinthians 5:21)  Being infinite God, He could provide an adequate payment for the sins of all men by dying on the cross, His blood being shed, and briefly being separated from His heavenly Father.  With the price for our sins being paid, the gift of eternal life was purchased for us.

But now we have another problem.  When God created us, he was looking for ones to fellowship with.  To spend time with them and interact on a personal basis.  He didn’t want machines or robots.  So, He created us with free wills.  Man could decide to follow Him and be close to Him, or go his own way.  Unfortunately, Adam chose the latter, and that has affected all of his descendants.  And now, even with the price paid for sin, and with it being offered to all men, man still has a choice.  The gift is being offered.  We can either accept it or reject it.  If reject it, then God has no other choice to separate us from Himself for all eternity.  It’s what we have chosen.  (John 3:16-18)

The measure of God’s love for all mankind is the gift of His Son.  No higher price could be imagined.  Just think of what it was like for Him to see His Son mocked and scorned – spit upon, abused, falsely accused and nailed to a cross.  Yet the worst part about it was when He had to turn His back on His own Son, as Jesus cried out, “Father, why have you forsaken me?”  But He went though with it because He loves you.

What is left is for us to receive the gift.  Romans 10:9-13 tells us how: believing the good news, and calling on Christ for salvation.

More on this topic:

Can God be both a loving God and also be just?

Yes, and He is.  Note that love (Greek: agape) means that we desire the very best good for the object of our love, even at great personal expense.  It doesn’t require that they deserve it.  We want that because we love them.  What happens then, if someone we love is justly condemned?  If we bypass justice, we are corrupt and ought to be condemned ourselves.  God cannot do that, it’s contrary to His character.  What He can do is to provide a way for the condemnation to be passed on to someone else through a ‘justice transaction.’  Just like an accountant can debit one account and credit another, so our sins can be transferred to another, and paid for by that one (Isaiah 53:6; 2 Corinthians 5:21).  Our sins were placed on Christ when He was condemned on the cross, His righteousness is placed on our account when we call on Him for salvation.  Note as well, that He can do a bit of ‘heavenly advertising’ to draw us to Himself.  The testimony of others who have followed Him is powerful (John 4:39).  We know that the Holy Spirit convicts the world of sin, of righteousness and judgement (John 16:8).  He doesn’t force us, but there is some ‘heavenly magnetism.”  Without that we certainly would go our own way instead of His. 

How can a loving God send people to Hell?  Can’t He simply choose to ignore their sin, or at least give them another chance?

See above.  See also the story of the rich man and Lazarus (Luke 16:19-31).