So over the summer of 2017 I encouraged the elementary kids of my classroom at church to write down any questions they may have about God, the Bible, Church, Heaven, etc.
I got some pretty interesting questions – and at the same time I received some pretty deep questions. As the summer went on I continued to gather and categorize their questions in hopes of answering them through the Word of God and through research.
On August 23rd, 2017 we started our first “Talk It Out” session at church. The idea was to create a place where the kids could hear questions they all wrote down, and where they could all learn and grow together.
I did this not because I proclaim to “know it all” because I will be the first to admit that I do not “know it all.” I did this because I wanted to answer real questions MY group of kids had – and not just give another lesson from a curriculum.
My heart has been “aching” for me to turn our Wednesday Night class times into a place where the kids get to experience God through worship, prayer, and their spiritual gifts. But before I can get them to that place, I need to answer some foundational questions of who God is and why does He love us?
My hope is that through these “Talk It Out” sessions that they will become platforms for family conversations in the car, at dinner, or as they are getting ready for bed.
QUESTION 1: How was God made and where did He come from?
I think this is definitely going to be one of the questions I ask God when I see Him face to face one day in Heaven because He has no mom or dad like you and I. In order for us to be alive today, we had to have had a mom and a dad. God isn’t like you and me. He doesn’t have a physical body like us. So it makes this question hard for us grasps the answer to since we look at it from a physical and “logical” stand point.
We are all familiar with the very first verse in the entire Bible that says, “In the beginning God…..” (Gen. 1:1). That’s it…. Just God. No one or noting else. He was just — there.
He has always been, and He will always be. God Himself said in Rev. 1:8 “I am the Alpha (Beginning) and the Omega (End),” says the Lord God, “who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.”
The prophet Isaiah wrote in chapter 40:28, “Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and His understanding no one can fathom.”
Another Scripture is found in John 1:1-3 that says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through Him all things were made; without Him nothing was made that has been made.”
QUESTION 2: Does God ever get old?
I think so many people think of God has “Father Time.” An old man with a long white beard who is known to be the Creator and Sustainer of all life itself.
The easiest answer to this questions is — no.
God even said in Malachi 3:6, “I the LORD do not change…”
And in Hebrews 13:8 it says that Jesus, “Is the same yesterday, today, and forever.”
QUESTION 3: What does God look like?
Great question! But the answer is – no one truly knows. Sure you have those who have had visions and dreams of meeting God and/or Jesus and I believe that people can really have dreams and visions of God/Jesus and they be real and accurate. Personally, I believe that Jesus looks like this image here.
But what about to those (like myself) who have not received a dream or vision of God/Jesus? Remember that God and Jesus are two separate beings, yet are also One according to Jesus in John 10:30.
But when referring to what God the Father looks like, we need to keep in mind that He is not like you and me. That is to say that God does not have a body like us. Remember that God has always been and will always be.
The Psalmist wrote in Psalm 90:2, “Before the mountains were born, and before You brought forth the whole world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God.”
The great news about God is that even though we don’t know what He looks like, He does not hide Himself from us either. To get the best idea of what God looks like, Scripture encourages us to look at Jesus and his life on earth. Colossians 1:15 reminds us that, “The Son (Jesus) is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.”
Jesus is a reflection of God. His love. His personality. His judgement.
And note that regardless of what critics say, Jesus is not merely a man who was a teacher or a prophet. No. He was fully God and yet fully man as the only, True Son of God. (See Hebrews 2:5-8)
John 1:14 says, “And the Word (Jesus) became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.”
Phil. 2:5-7 tells us, “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men.”
The Bible describes Jesus as a Mighty Warrior! The Savior of the world! Our Champion!
Revelation 19:11-16, “Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war. 12 His eyes were like a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns. He had a name written that no one knew except Himself. 13 He was clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God. 14 And the armies in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, followed Him on white horses. 15 Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations. And He Himself will rule them with a rod of iron. He Himself treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. 16 And He has on His robe and on His thigh a name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.”
Revelation 1:11-18, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last,” and, “What you see, write in a book and send it to the seven churches which are in Asia: to Ephesus, to Smyrna, to Pergamos, to Thyatira, to Sardis, to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea.” 12 Then I turned to see the voice that spoke with me. And having turned I saw seven golden lampstands, 13 and in the midst of the seven lampstands One like the Son of Man, clothed with a garment down to the feet and girded about the chest with a golden band. 14 His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and His eyes like a flame of fire; 15 His feet werelike fine brass, as if refined in a furnace, and His voice as the sound of many waters; 16 He had in His right hand seven stars, out of His mouth went a sharp two-edged sword, and His countenance was like the sun shining in its strength. 17 And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead. But He laid His right hand on me, saying to me, “Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last. 18 I am He who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore. Amen. And I have the keys of Hades and of Death.”
Revelation 4:2-3, “Immediately I was in the Spirit; and behold, a throne set in heaven, and One sat on the throne. 3 And He who sat there was like a jasper and a sardius stone in appearance; and there was a rainbow around the throne, in appearance like an emerald.”
Sounds pretty cool to me! Sounds like I serve a POWERFUL, WONDERFUL GOD!
QUESTION 4: Who wrote the Bible?
2 Timothy 3:16-17 tells us that, “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.”
In a way you can say that God wrote the whole Bible.
But know that it was written by over 40 different authors over the course of 1,500 years and it was all inspired by the Holy Spirit. Some of those authors were men like Moses, John (a disciple of Jesus), David, Daniel, Peter, Paul (once known as Saul), James, and Solomon (the wisest man who ever and will ever live).
QUESTION 5: Why is the Bible split up in “books”?
There are 66 books in the Bible.
Thats 1,189 Chapters.
Created by 31,173 verses (give or take a translation)
The Bible is split up into two parts, The Old Testament and The New Testament.
The Old Testament is the history of God and His people – The Law. While The New Testament was written in fulfillment of the prophecies of The Old Testament as well as prophetic writings of what is to come – Grace.
Its also important to note that the books of the Bible are not in chronological order (in order of time). They are separated into books and verses for helpful references and quotes.
Chapters were not added to the Bible until the 13th Century, while verses were later added in the 16th Century. The first Bible to be printed with both chapters and verses was in 1555 from Stephen’s edition of the Latin Vulgate.
Even though the original manuscript did not have chapters and verses to it, I believe with all my heart that God was still involved, intentionally allowing the Bible to be organized into what we have available today.
Its amazing to know that out of all 66 books, written but 40 different authors who mainly never met each other, who wrote about various controversial topics – all come in agreement with one another.
Please be aware of what translations you use. There are many great translations you can use to help you grow in the knowledge of the Bible, but there are also many translations out there that are way off from what the original writers intended. I personally like the NKJ, NIV, NiRV, and AMP.
I hope this first session of “Talk It Out” helps answer any questions you may have! Stay tuned for more!