J. M. McCaleb wrote, “Of one the Lord has made the race; Thro’ one has come the fall.” The number “one” appears numerous times in both the Old and New Testaments. As in the line in this great song, “The Gospel is for All,” the word often has great significance. This is especially true in reference to God.
Alexander Cruden in his tremendous work, Cruden’s Complete Commentary, first published in 1737, gives one of its meanings in Scripture as “One only, there being no other of that kind.” He gives I Timothy 2:5 and Hebrews 10:14 as examples of such usage. “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” (I Timothy 2:5). Paul is telling us that there is one God and only one God; there is no other like Him. There may be numerous false gods represented by many different kinds of idols; however, there is no other God like the one true God. This is the same message that Paul preached to those on Mars Hill in Athens who were so religious that they had images to all the so-called gods including one to an “unknown god” (Acts 17:23). It was this one and only one God that Paul preached: “Him declare I unto you.” He went on to describe the one and only one true God with these words: “God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that He is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshiped with men’s hands, as though He needed any thing, seeing He giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us: For in Him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also His offspring. Inasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man’s device” (Acts 17:24-29). Later in his first letter to Corinth he taught, “We know that an idol is nothing in the world, and that there is none other God but one” (I Cor. 8:4). He would repeat it in his letter to the church at Ephesus while discussing “the unity of the Spirit.” He wrote, “There is….One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all” (Eph. 4:4-6).
Because He is the one and only true God, He demands complete and undivided devotion. The first three of the Ten Commandments, given to the children of Israel on Mt. Sinai, were laws relating to this fact: “And God spake all these words, saying, I am the Lord thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. Thou shalt have no other gods before me. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments. Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain” (Exod. 20:1-7).
The psalmist described this one God as being “from everlasting to everlasting” (Psalm 90:1-2). In other words, He is a divine being who had always existed and will always exist; He had no beginning and will have no end. His nature is “perfect” (Matt. 5:48). He is the “Father of our Lord Jesus Christ” who is also the one and only one mediator between God and man (Eph. 1:3; I Tim. 2:5).
There is but one God. He is Jehovah God; He is not the “Allah” of the Koran. He is the one God who “hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ” (Eph. 1:3). He is the one God whose grace “hath appeared unto all men” (Titus 2:11). Is He your God?
Paul Wilmoth