by André Piet
December 27th, 2012

The Bible teaches and stresses, from beginning to end, that there is one GOD. We address Him as HE and referring to Himself, He uses the pronoun I. Singular, as Someone. Paul says in response to the pagan idea of there being multiple gods: "nevertheless, for us there is one God, the Father…" (1Cor.8:6). And Jesus Himself spoke to His Father as being "the only true GOD" (John 17:3).

In our language, the particularity usually disappears, but in the original Greek of the NT, nearly a thousand times, mention is made of "the God". We find it a few dozen times back in phrases such as, "the God of Israel" (Matt.15:31) or "the God of our fathers" or "the living God". But for the vast majority of times, the definite article before God has disappeared in the translation. This is unfortunate, because the phrase "the God" gives exclusive glory to God. He is not just a God, but the God. And therefore also, ever so correctly, GOD. Monotheism (1Tim.1:17; Jude 1:25) is not a variant in the Biblical teaching concerning God, but a must. There is, either, one God or no God. Would God share His Deity with others, then it would be impossible for Him to be the Almighty (Rev.1:8). What after all one god would decide, could be thwarted by another god.

The Greek word for God (theos) is derived from the verb for "placing" (click HERE). God is the One Who gives everything a place. Here are ten examples of passages where the definite article, in the Bible translations, has disappeared, but where it becomes much more specific and, therefore, more powerful, when we do read the word "the".

(1) Matt.4:3 – And, approaching, the trier said to Him, If you are God's Son (lit. Son of THE God)…

(2) Luke 1:37 – …seeing that it will not be impossible with THE God to fulfill His every declaration."

(3) 2Cor.10:5 – …pulling down reckonings and every height elevating itself against the knowledge of THE God…

(4) Gal.1:4 – … to the will of our God and Father (lit. THE God and Father of us)

(5) Eph.4:18 – their comprehension being darkened, being estranged from the life of THE God …

(6) Phil.4:7 – and the peace of THE God, that is superior to every frame of mind,

(7) Col.1:10 – … and growing in the realization of THE God;

(8) Col.1:15 – Who is the Image of THE invisible THE God… (Please note, how on the one hand, the definite article before "Image" has been added, and on the other hand, before "God" has been removed.)

(9) 1Thes.1:9 – … how you turn back to THE God from idols…

(10) 1Tim.6:13 – I am charging you in the sight of THE God Who is vivifying all…


Translation: Peter Feddema

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