As you know, God has many attributes. In its first article, the Belgic Confession lists many of these. For example, we confess from the Scriptures that God is eternal, incomprehensible, invisible, immutable and infinite. That’s just part of the list. It’s good that we reflect and meditate often on these attributes of God. Scripture encourages us to do that very thing. For instance, in Jeremiah 9:23,24, God says, “Let not the wise man boast of his wisdom or the strong man boast of his strength or the rich man boast of his riches, but let him who boasts boast about this: that he understands and knows me.” Knowing God is not only recommended, it’s also necessary. John 17:3 tells us that knowing God is the essence of eternal life. Speaking prophetically of those Jews who would oppose the influence of the Greeks, Daniel said that “the people who know their God shall be strong and carry out great exploits.” That’s in Daniel 11:32. We find ourselves engaged also in spiritual warfare, we have to constantly do battle with the unholy trinity of the world, the devil, and our own flesh. To be strong in this battle the knowledge of God is essential for us too.
So, last week as we considered Lord’s Day 4, we reflected on God’s justice. Many today don’t care to reflect on the fact that God is just. But Scripture reveals it and so we believe it.
Today as we come to Lord’s Day 5 we can move on to consider some of the other attributes of our God. And we’re going to do that in relation to our redemption. Lord’s Day 5 is the first Lord’s Day in the second part of the Catechism dealing with our deliverance. It’s concerned with how we may be delivered from the temporal and eternal punishment that we deserve. Temporal refers to punishment in this life and eternal refers to what happens after we die. Apart from Christ we deserve punishment both now and forever. But is there a way out? The Catechism follows the teaching of the Bible and tells us, yes, there is a way. Out of his own character and attributes, God makes a way. In this we see much reason to give praise and adoration to our God. Reflecting on his attributes is not an intellectual exercise, but a devotional one. We want to bring greater and richer praise to the God who saves us.