The pictures of my dad as a boy and as a young man do not look exactly like the guy I remember who rode me around our back yard on his shoulders. They don’t look exactly like Dad did as an old man, either. But I am sure that those pictures are of the same man. There is a basic identity revealed in those pictures – the set of the eyes, the shape of the hands – and there is no doubt about who they are. If someone asked me to prove it, I could go on and on.
It seems like I’ve been “going on and on,” showing how the identity of the Old Testament God is the same as the God revealed in the New Testament. Once you look for evidence of that, there are many ways to prove it. But, before we leave this topic, let’s reflect on how Jesus saw the God of the Old Testament. Did He recognize Him as the same God He called His Father? Even in answering this question we could “go on and on.” But consider how Jesus answered the angry accusations and questions of the Jewish leaders of His day. When they asked Him:
“Are you greater than our father Abraham? He died, and so did the prophets. Who do you think you are?” Jesus 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.” (John 8:53-55, NIV)
There it is, in Jesus’ words. The God of the Jewish people in the 1st century, the God Who called Abraham, back in Genesis 12, is the same God. Jesus refers to as His Father.