The Knowledge of the Holy: The Self Existence of God
[Editor’s Note: This is a 23-Day Series exploring different aspects of God’s nature and personality, using Tozer’s “The Knowledge of the Holy” as a discussion starter. You can read the introduction of the series here.]
What separates God from every other thing in the universe is He has no beginning. Being the creator of time, He exists outside of it. Our all too human quest to understand the origins of everything stem from our experience that everything we interact with had a beginning. We start to get out of our depth when we start dealing with the One who has none. And because God has existed without assistance for all of eternity, He is sits above every created thing.
The self existence of God becomes really “real” when we understand that it’s around this topic that conflict between God and man arises. The essence of sin is an assertion of our self, our will, our way on God. We challenge God’s “self-existence” with our “self.” The beginning of holiness, Tozer argues, is the true submission of man to God. To use Tozer’s analogy, God is always the sun of our galaxy and we are a planet in beneficial orbit. Sin, at its root, is beginning to think of ourselves as a sun and not acknowledging our proper place submitted to God who has always existed and around whom we orbit. “The natural man is a sinner because he challenges God’s selfhood in relation to his own.”
Tozer goes on to explain the only hope for a man who as a planet thinks himself a sun: The gospel must birth in our hearts new desires. As we see Jesus and repent, a new nature is born in us. This new nature, far from just being a more moral person, is actually able to submit the self to God’s self. He no longer challenges God’s existence with his own, but willingly crucifies the self and let’s Christ live through Him.
What I’ve been struck by in this whole discussion is the reality of how subtle the fight against God is in our own soul. And so much of our fight comes from the fact that we fail to see the beauty, power, and holiness of a God who was, is, and is to come. This is one of those areas where we are way too comfortable with a God who we barely understand.
My other thought this morning was this: We serve a God who didn’t make us out of need. He made us to share His life and love with humans. This should stagger us, but the revelation of a God who exists without us is that He didn’t need to make us. But He chose to. He chose relationship. He chose to create to share His life. He isn’t a needy God, but He moves out of love for relationship. This differs greatly from how God is portrayed: needy of humans and uninterested in relationship. My time reading this morning has left me convicted that I need to draw near to a powerful and intimate God who I can offer nothing, but who wants to meet with me regardless. He wants to meet with you, too.
So, thanks for reading. My thoughts are here for you, but this conversation is really helped when you share yours too. Leave a comment and let us know what you’re learning.
The Knowledge of the Holy Series
Day 5: The Self Existence of God
Day 6: The Self Sufficiency of God
Day 7: The Eternity of God
Day 8: God’s Infinitude
Day 9: The Immutability of God
Day 10: The Divine Omniscience
Day 11: The Wisdom of God
Day 12: The Omnipotence of God
Day 13: The Divine Transcendence
Day 14: God’s Omnipresence
Day 15: The Faithfulness of God
Day 16: The Goodness of God
Day 17: The Justice of God
Day 18: The Mercy of God
Day 19: The Grace of God
Day 20: The Love of God
Day 21: The Holiness of God
Day 22: The Sovereignty of God
Day 23: The Open Secret