Your Answer:  3. Invisible Spirit

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Jesus says:  "God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth." John 4:24 (NAS)

"Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen." 1 Timothy 1:17 (NAS)

For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse. Romans 1:20 (NAS)

Doesn't the Bible Talk About People Seeing God?

In the Old Testament and New Testament, there are many examples of people seeing angels, different manifestations of the glory of God, visions, dreams, etc.

Because some of these encounters with angels or the glory of God are described by the individuals as having "seen God," it might get a little confusing.  But with closer examination, you will often see that people actually saw something other than God (e.g., they may have seen an angel of God or a vision)...and not God the Father. 

The Example of Jacob Wrestling With An Angel

In Genesis chapter 32, Jacob was met by some angels of God (Genesis 32:1).  In Genesis 32:24, it says that a man wrestled with Jacob until daybreak.  Later on the prophet Hosea explains that Jacob had contended with God by wrestling with an angel of God:

In the womb he took his brother by the heel, and in his maturity he contended with God. Yes, he wrestled with the angel and prevailed; He wept and sought His favor. He found Him at Bethel, and there He spoke with us.  Hosea 12:3-4 (NAS)

Some misinterpret these scriptures and try to claim that it was God Himself who wrestled with Jacob...and thus claim that Jacob saw God. By wrestling with the angel of God, Job was indirectly striving with God too....but the text is clear that it was an angel.

The Example of Manoah and His Wife

In Judges 13:22, Manoah says to his wife:  "We shall surely die for we have seen God."  Again, we must look further to see exactly what Manoah and his wife experienced.  Was it that they saw God the Father himself...or did they see an angel or something that had come from God?

1.  Manoah's wife had the first contact in Judges 13:3:

Then the angel of the LORD appeared to the woman, and said to her, "Behold now, you are barren and have borne no children, but you shall conceive and give birth to a son.  Judges 13:3  (NAS)

2.  When Manoah's wife told Manoah what happened, she said:

"A man of God came to me and his appearance was like the appearance of the angel of God, very awesome. And I did not ask him where he came from, nor did he tell me his name. Judges 13:6 (NAS)

3.  The 2nd contact with Manoah's wife after Manoah prayed to God:

And God listened to the voice of Manoah; and the angel of God came again to the woman as she was sitting in the field, but Manoah her husband was not with her. Judges 13:9 (NAS)

4.  The angel of the Lord spoke to Manoah, performed wonders in front of Manoah and his wife, and then ascended to heaven in a flame:

For it came about when the flame went up from the altar toward heaven, that the angel of the LORD ascended in the flame of the altar. When Manoah and his wife saw this, they fell on their faces to the ground. 21 Now the angel of the LORD appeared no more to Manoah or his wife. Then Manoah knew that he was the angel of the LORD. 22 So Manoah said to his wife, "We shall surely die, for we have seen God." Judges 13:20-22 (NAS) 

Even though Manoah "knew that he was the angel of the Lord" (vs. 21), he still chose to refer to the experience with the angel as having "seen God." 

Let's look at a few more examples.  Click on the next question to continue...

Question 12 of 17