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What Is God Like?

What Is God Like?

The more we discern someone’s qualities, the better we know that person, and thus our friendship can deepen. Similarly, the more we come to know Jehovah’s qualities, the better we will know what he is like, and thus our friendship can deepen. Of all God’s wonderful attributes, four are outstanding: his power, wisdom, justice, and love.

GOD IS POWERFUL

“O Sovereign Lord Jehovah! Look! You made the heavens and the earth by your great power.”​JEREMIAH 32:17.

Evidence of God’s power is seen in creation. For example, when you stand outside on a bright summer day, what do you feel on your skin? The warmth of the sun. Actually, you are feeling the results of Jehovah’s creative power. How powerful is the sun? At its core, its temperature is said to be about 27,000,000 degrees Fahrenheit (15,000,000°C). Every second, the sun emits energy equivalent to the explosion of many hundreds of millions of nuclear bombs.

Yet our sun is small compared to many of the untold trillions of stars in the universe. Scientists estimate that one of the largest stars, named UY Scuti, has a diameter about 1,700 times that of the sun. If UY Scuti replaced the sun, it would engulf the earth and extend beyond the orbit of the planet Jupiter. Perhaps that helps us to grasp more fully  Jeremiah’s statement that Jehovah God made the heavens and the earth, that is, the universe, by his great power.

How do we benefit from God’s power? Our life depends on God’s physical creations, such as the sun and all the wonderful resources on earth. In addition, God uses his power to benefit humans in a personal way. How? In the first century, God granted power to Jesus to perform deeds that were truly miraculous. We read: “The blind are now seeing and the lame are walking, the lepers are being cleansed and the deaf are hearing, the dead are being raised up.” (Matthew 11:5) What about today? “He gives power to the tired one,” says the Bible, adding: “Those hoping in Jehovah will regain power.” (Isaiah 40:29, 31) God can supply “power beyond what is normal” to enable us to deal with or endure the hardships and trials of life. (2 Corinthians 4:7) Do you not feel drawn to a God who so lovingly uses his limitless power in our behalf?

GOD IS WISE

“How many your works are, O Jehovah! You have made all of them in wisdom.”​PSALM 104:24.

The more we learn about the things God has made, the more we find ourselves awed by his wisdom. In fact, there is a field of study called biomimetics, or biomimicry, in which scientists examine Jehovah’s creation and borrow elements of design found in nature to enhance their own designs. These range from a simple fastener to the design of airplanes.

The human eye is a marvel of creation

God’s wisdom is seen nowhere more marvelously than in the human body. Consider, for example, the way a human baby develops. The process begins with one fertilized cell, which contains all the genetic instructions needed. That cell divides into many cells that look alike. But at just the right time, the cells begin to form differently, resulting in hundreds of distinct types, such as blood cells, nerve cells, and bone cells. Soon organ systems appear and start to function. In just nine months, that original cell develops into a complete infant made up of billions of cells. The wisdom seen in such design moves many to agree with the Bible writer who said: “I praise you because in an awe-inspiring way I am wonderfully made.”​—Psalm 139:14.

How do we benefit from God’s wisdom? The Creator knows what we need to be happy. Drawing from his vast knowledge and understanding, he provides wise counsel in his Word, the Bible. For example, it urges: “Continue . . . forgiving one another freely.” (Colossians 3:13) Is that wise counsel? Yes. Research has found that being forgiving can improve one’s sleep and lower one’s blood pressure. It may also reduce the risk of depression and other health issues. God is like a wise, caring friend who never ceases to give us helpful and beneficial advice. (2 Timothy 3:16, 17) Would you not want to have such a friend?

 GOD IS JUST

“Jehovah loves justice.”​PSALM 37:28.

God always does what is right. In fact, “it is unthinkable for the true God to act wickedly, for the Almighty to do wrong!” (Job 34:10) His judgments are upright, as the psalmist said when addressing Jehovah: “You will judge the peoples fairly.” (Psalm 67:4) Because “Jehovah sees into the heart,” he cannot be fooled by hypocrisy but is always able to perceive the truth and make accurate judgments. (1 Samuel 16:7) Furthermore, God is aware of every act of injustice and corruption on earth, and he has promised that soon “the wicked . . . will be cut off from the earth.”​—Proverbs 2:22.

However, God is not a harsh judge who is eager to punish. He shows mercy when appropriate. The Bible says: “Jehovah is merciful and compassionate,” even toward wicked ones if they sincerely repent. Is that not true justice?​—Psalm 103:8; 2 Peter 3:9.

How do we benefit from God’s justice? The apostle Peter stated: “God is not partial, but in every nation the man who fears him and does what is right is acceptable to him.” (Acts 10:34, 35) We benefit from God’s justice because he never shows partiality or favoritism. We can be accepted by him and be his worshippers regardless of our race, nationality, education, or social standing.

God is impartial, and we can benefit from his impartiality regardless of our race or social standing

Because God wants us to understand and benefit from his justice, he has provided us with a conscience. The Scriptures describe the conscience as a law ‘written in our hearts,’ which ‘bears witness’ as to whether our behavior is right or wrong. (Romans 2:15) How do we benefit? Properly trained, our conscience can motivate us to turn away from harmful or unjust actions. And if we do make a mistake, it can move us to repent and correct our  course. Indeed, an understanding of God’s sense of justice helps us and draws us to him!

GOD IS LOVE

“God is love.”​1 JOHN 4:8.

God displays power, wisdom, and justice, but the Bible does not say that God is power, wisdom, or justice. It says that he is love. Why? Because it can truthfully be said that God’s power enables him to act and his justice and wisdom guide the way he acts. But Jehovah’s love motivates him to act. Love influences everything that he does.

Although Jehovah did not lack anything, his love moved him to create intelligent beings, both heavenly and earthly, who can benefit from and enjoy his love and care. He unselfishly prepared the earth to be the ideal home for his human creation. And he continues to show love to all humans in that “he makes his sun rise on both the wicked and the good and makes it rain on both the righteous and the unrighteous.”​—Matthew 5:45.

In addition, “Jehovah is very tender in affection and merciful.” (James 5:11) He expresses affection toward those who sincerely take steps to know and draw close to him. God sees such people as individuals. In fact, “he cares for you.”​1 Peter 5:7.

How do we benefit from God’s love? We enjoy the beauty of a sunset. We delight to hear a baby’s laughter. We cherish the love of a close family member. These may not be essential things, but they enrich our life immeasurably.

We also benefit from another expression of God’s love: prayer. The Bible urges us: “Do not be anxious over anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication along with thanksgiving, let your petitions be made known to God.” Like a loving father, he wants us to turn to him for help with our most intimate concerns. Then Jehovah, in his unselfish love, promises to provide “the peace of God that surpasses all understanding.”​—Philippians 4:6, 7.

Has this brief discussion of God’s principal attributes​—such as his power, wisdom, justice, and love—​helped you to get a better picture of what God is like? To further your appreciation of God, we invite you to learn what he has done and will yet do for your benefit.

WHAT IS GOD LIKE? Jehovah is more powerful, wise, and just than anyone else. But his most appealing quality is his love