7.2.2 The Personality Of God In Hinduism
The Bible very clearly teaches that God is a personal being. We have outlined this in some detail in Bible Basics chapter 1. His ways are morally very far above ours. And yet we are made physically in His image. We seek to adopt His moral image, displayed as it was in its glorious fullness in the person of His Son, Jesus Christ. When Jesus returns, our bodies will be changed into a body and nature similar to that of God Himself. Thus His plan to manifest Himself in His many children will be complete. His memorial Name, Yahweh Elohim- He who will be [revealed in] many, speaks eloquently of this, His essential intention.
Yet the average Hindu considers that God is impersonal, because any other view of Him is too limiting. This has stopped them perceiving the wonder of the fact that God is personally righteous, and above all that “God is love”, and that God so loved this world that He gave His only begotten Son (Jn. 3:16). The true Christian response is that it is wrong to consider “personhood” a limitation on God. This contention is based on the more general premise that it is a misconception to consider any attribute when applied to God as a limitation. No right-thinking person should deny that God in His essence is beyond human conception and language. Of course, He is; God is infinite. But that realization does not make God property-less. It means that whatever properties God has, He has in an unlimited capacity.
The Hindu devaluing of God’s personality has lead them to devalue human personality, as we will comment later. To be a person means to have greater dignity than to be person-less. There is a particular trait that is perhaps the most powerful expression of personhood, namely the willingness to forego one’s own advantage for the sake of someone else. When someone sacrifices his own wealth, health, or even his life, we see that he has reached the highest level of what it means to be a real person, distinguishing himself categorically from the lower orders of being. It is therefore in the person and self-sacrifice of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, that we see full and ultimate, real, personhood.