No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.
John 1:18 KJV
No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, [or the Only Begotten] who is at the Father’s side, has made him known.This is a strong statement, that no person has ever seen God Almighty at any time. It is supported by other statements in both the Old and New Testaments. In addition, if one did see the face of God, the result would be death. The Bible appears to record the stories of several people who believed they saw God and lived, including Noah, Abraham, Jacob and Moses. Is the Bible contradicting itself? If these people did not talk with God, then who did they talk with?
John 1:18 NIV
said, “Now show me your glory.” And the LORD said, “I will cause all my
goodness to pass in front of you, ... But,” he said, “you cannot see my
face, for no one may see me and live.”
warns Moses that no one may look at God's face and live.
|1 John 4:12
||No one has
ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love
is made complete in us.
||No person has seen God - no exceptions.|
||No one has
seen the Father except the one who is from God; only he has seen the
Father. I tell you the truth, he who believes has everlasting life. I
am the bread of life.
the one sent from God, has seen God the Father.
|John 1:17-18||For the law
was given by Moses, but grace
and truth came by Jesus Christ. No man hath seen God at any time; the
only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath
clarifies that the "god" Moses spoke to was not the Almighty, but
the son of God who declares and makes the Father known.
||There the angel of the LORD appeared to him in
flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that though the bush was
on fire it did not burn up. So Moses thought, “I will go over and see
this strange sight—why the bush does not burn up.”
When the LORD saw that he had gone over to look, God called to him from within the bush, “Moses! Moses!” And Moses said, “Here I am.”
“Do not come any closer,” God said. “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground.” Then he said, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob.” At this, Moses hid his face, because he was afraid to look at God.
|The angel of
the LORD identifies himself as the God of Abraham.
If Moses could look at him and live,
then it must not be the Almighty, even though it is the God of Abraham.
||What, then, was the purpose of
the law? It was added because of transgressions until the Seed to whom
the promise referred had come. The law was put into effect through
angels by a mediator.
||Paul also knew it was not the
See 1 Tim 2:5
||The angel of the LORD found Hagar near a
spring in the desert; ... Then the angel
of the LORD told her, “Go back
to your mistress and submit to her.” The angel added, “I will so
increase your descendants that they will be too numerous to count.” ...
She gave this name to the LORD
who spoke to her: “You are the God who
sees me,” for she said, “I have now seen the One who sees me.”
||FN to ver 13
says, "To see God's face was believed to bring death." While Hagar did
not realize she was talking with the angel of the LORD, the author knew
||So Jacob was left alone, and a man wrestled with him till
daybreak. ... Then the man
said, “Let me go, for it is daybreak.”
But Jacob replied, “I will not let you go unless you bless me.”
The man asked him, “What is your name?” “Jacob,” he answered.
Then the man said, “Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel, because you have struggled with God and with men and have overcome.”
Jacob said, “Please tell me your name.”
But he replied, “Why do you ask my name?” Then he blessed him there. So Jacob called the place Peniel, saying, “It is because I saw God face to face, and yet my life was spared.”
|Jacob believed he saw
God face to face
makes clear that
Jacob "struggled with the angel".
|Gen 16:7, 10
||The angel of the LORD found Hagar near a
spring in the desert; ... The angel added,
“I will so increase your descendants that they will be too numerous to count.”
|The angel of the Lord will
increase Hagar's descendants.
||The angel of the LORD called to Abraham
from heaven a second time and said, “I swear by myself, declares the LORD, that because you have done
this and have not withheld your son, your
only son, I will surely bless you and make your descendants as
numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sand on the seashore. Your
descendants will take possession of the cities of their enemies, and
through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because
you have obeyed me.”
||The angel of the Lord asked
Abraham to sacrifice his son.
||There the angel of the LORD
appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. ... God said.
“Take off your sandals, for the
place where you are standing is holy ground.” Then he said, “I am the God of your father, the God of
Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob.” At this, Moses
hid his face, because he was afraid to look at God. ...
Moses said to God, “Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ Then what shall I tell them?” God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I AM has sent me to you.’”
|The angel of
the LORD identifies himself to Moses as:
The God of Abraham, Isaac & Jacob
and also as:
||Then the angel of God, who had been traveling
in front of Israel’s army, withdrew and went behind them. The pillar of cloud also moved from in
front and stood behind them, coming between the armies of Egypt and
||The angel of God protected the
||“See, I am sending an angel ahead of you to guard you
along the way and to bring you to the place
I have prepared. Pay attention to him and listen to what he
says. Do not rebel against him; he will not forgive your rebellion,
since my Name is in him. If
you listen carefully to what he says and do all that I say, I will be
an enemy to your enemies and will oppose those who oppose you.
||The angel protecting the
Israelites has God's name in him.
Note: Jesus speaks of preparing a place in John 14:2-3.
||The angel of the LORD went up from
Gilgal to Bokim and said, “I brought you up out of Egypt and led you into the land that I swore to give to
your forefathers. I said, ‘I will never break my covenant with you,
||The angel of the Lord:
- Brought them out of Egypt
- Promised land
- Made a covenant
||And the angel of the LORD said unto him, Why
askest thou thus after my name, seeing it is secret? (KJV)
... “Why do you ask my name? It is beyond understanding." (NIV)
|The angel of the Lord has a
||Then he showed me Joshua the
high priest standing before the angel
of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right side to accuse him.
The LORD said to Satan, “The LORD rebuke you, Satan! The LORD, who has
chosen Jerusalem, rebuke you!
Is not this man a burning stick snatched from the fire?”
||The angel of the Lord has
chosen Jerusalem as his holy city.
replied, “If I glorify myself, my glory means nothing. My Father, whom you claim as your
God, is the one who glorifies me. Though you do not know him, I know
him. If I said I did not, I would be a liar like you, but I do know him
and keep his word. Your father Abraham rejoiced at the thought of
seeing my day; he saw it and was glad.”
“You are not yet fifty years old,” the Jews said to him, “and you have seen Abraham!”
“I tell you the truth,” Jesus answered, “before Abraham was born, I am!” At this, they picked up stones to stone him, but Jesus hid himself, slipping away from the temple grounds.
distinguishes himself from the Father,
Questions if the Israelites know which God they worship,
And equates himself
w/ I AM
|Ephesians 3:9-12||... to make
all see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning
of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things through Jesus Christ; to the intent
that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church
to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places, according to
the eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord, in
whom we have boldness and access with confidence through faith in Him.
created our world with the power from God
||God, who at various times and in
various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, has in
these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of
all things, through whom also He made the worlds; who being the
brightness of His glory and the express image of His person, and
upholding all things by the word of His power, when He had by Himself
purged our sins, sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high,
having become so much better than the angels, as He has by inheritance
obtained a more excellent name than they.
||Another reminder that God did
not speak directly to his people but through the prophets and Jesus.
And another statement that our worlds were made through Jesus.
|Gen 49:18, 24-25||I have
waited for thy salvation, O
But his bow abode in strength, and the arms of his hands were made strong by the hands of the mighty God of Jacob; (from thence is the shepherd, the stone of Israel:) Even by the God of thy father, who shall help thee; and by the Almighty, who shall bless thee with blessings of heaven above, blessings of the deep that lieth under, blessings of the breasts, and of the womb:
|The God of
Jacob is also called the Shepherd and Stone (or Rock) of Israel.
He is helped by the Almighty.
[Note: Hebrew for "salvation" is yeshuah.]
|Exodus 24:9-11||Moses and
Aaron, Nadab and Abihu, and the seventy elders of Israel went up and
saw the God of Israel. Under
his feet was something like a pavement made of sapphire, clear as the
sky itself. But God did not raise his hand against these leaders of the
Israelites; they saw God, and they
ate and drank.
and drank. A covenant meal (cf.
Ge 26:30; 31:54), celebrating the sealing of the covenant described in
It foreshadows the Lord’s Supper, …
[This hints at this god being Jesus. It is not the Father, for they saw him and lived.]
||Listen, O heavens, and I will
speak; hear, O earth, the words of my mouth. Let my teaching fall like
rain and my words descend like dew,
like showers on new grass, like abundant rain on tender plants. I will proclaim the name of the LORD. Oh, praise the greatness of our God! He is the Rock, his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he. They have acted corruptly toward him; to their shame they are no longer his children,
but a warped and crooked generation.
... Remember the days of old; ... When the Most High gave the nations their inheritance, when he divided all mankind, he set up boundaries for the peoples according to the number of the sons of Israel. For the LORD’S portion is his people, Jacob his allotted inheritance. In a desert land he found him, in a barren and howling waste. He shielded him and cared for him; he guarded him as the apple of his eye, like an eagle that stirs up its nest
and hovers over its young, that spreads its wings to catch them
and carries them on its pinions. The LORD alone led him; no foreign god was with him. ...
Jeshurun grew fat and kicked; filled with food, he became heavy and sleek. He abandoned the God who made him and rejected the Rock his Savior. They made him jealous with their foreign gods and angered him with their detestable idols. They sacrificed to demons, which are not God— gods they had not known, gods that recently appeared, gods your fathers did not fear. You deserted the Rock, who fathered you; you forgot the God who gave you birth. The LORD saw this and rejected them because he was angered by his sons and daughters.
|The Song of Moses:
the Most High,
the Rock, our Savior
[KJV: Rock of his salvation.
Again: Hebrew for "salvation" is yeshuah]
Here the Rock
is also identified as
the one who created us.
||The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge.
He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
|The Lord is
my Rock and Salvation.
||To you I call, O LORD my Rock; do not turn a deaf ear to me.
For if you remain silent, I will be like those who have gone down to the pit.
|The Lord is my Rock.
||You love righteousness and hate
therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions
by anointing you with the oil of joy.
|The Father and the Son
are two separate gods.
(See also Heb 1:8-9)
||Hear my cry, O God; listen to my prayer.
From the ends of the earth I call to you, I call as my heart grows faint;
lead me to the rock that is higher than I.
For you have been my refuge, a strong tower against the foe.
I long to dwell in your tent forever and take refuge in the shelter of your wings.
|God is my rock.
[KJV: tent is tabernacle.]
||I will sing of the LORD’S great love forever; with my
mouth I will make your faithfulness known through all generations. I
will declare that your love stands firm forever, that you established
your faithfulness in heaven itself. You said, “I have made a covenant with my chosen one, I
have sworn to David my
servant, ‘I will establish your line forever and make your throne firm
through all generations.’”
... Once you spoke in a vision, to your faithful people you said: ... I have found David my servant; ... and through my name his horn will be exalted. ...
He will call out to me, ‘You are my Father, my God, the Rock my Savior.’ I will also appoint him my firstborn, the most exalted of the kings of the earth. ... I will establish his line forever, his throne as long as the heavens endure.
who made a covenant,
and is the Rock,
and who will be the king of kings,
is also God's firstborn.
This describes Jesus.
||Come, let us sing for joy to the
Lord; let us shout aloud to the Rock
of our salvation.
Let us come before him with thanksgiving and extol him with music and song.
For the LORD is the great God, the great King above all gods.
|The Rock of our Salvation
is also called the
King above all gods.
|Ps 136:1-3, 10-11
||Give thanks to the LORD, for he
is good. His love endures forever.
Give thanks to the God of gods. His love endures forever.
Give thanks to the Lord of lords: His love endures forever.
to him who struck down the firstborn of Egypt His love endures forever.
and brought Israel out from among them His love endures forever.
|The one who brought the
Israelites out of Egypt
is also called
the God of gods
and Lord of lords.
| Ex 19:3-6
went up to God, and the LORD called to him from the mountain and said,
“This is what you are to say to the house of Jacob and what you are to
tell the people of Israel: ‘You yourselves have seen what I did to
Egypt, and how I carried you on eagles’
wings and brought you to myself. Now if you obey me fully and
keep my covenant, then out of
all nations you will be my treasured
possession. Although the whole earth is mine, you will be for me
a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’
These are the words you are to speak to the Israelites.”
of God's marriage covenant is to create a nation of holy people.
|Isaiah 54:5||For your Maker is your husband — the LORD Almighty is his name—
the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer; he is called the God of all the earth.
|Our Maker is our Husband.
||“Return, faithless people,”
declares the LORD, “for I am your husband. I will choose you—one
from a town and two from a clan—and bring you to Zion. Then I will give
you shepherds after my own heart, who will lead you with knowledge and
||The Lord is our Husband.
||After all, no one ever hated his
own body, but he feeds and cares for it, just as Christ does the
church—for we are members of his body. “For this reason a man will
leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will
become one flesh.” This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church.
||Christ is married to the Church.
||... “Hallelujah! For our Lord God Almighty reigns. Let us
rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready.
Fine linen, bright and clean, was given her to wear.” (Fine linen
stands for the righteous acts of the
saints.) Then the angel said to me, “Write: ‘Blessed are those
who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb!’”...
||The bride of the Lamb are the
saints of his church.
The God of Abraham, Isaac & Jacob
I AM that I AM
The one who choose and protected Israel under its wings
The one who brought the Israelites out of Egypt and protected them
The Rock of our Salvation
The one who Fathered us humans
The one who entered a marriage covenant with Israel and the Church
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