Question: "Has anyone ever seen God?"
The Bible says “no one has ever seen God at any time.” (John 1:18) But the verse goes onto reveal one person who has seen God. The second part of the verse says, “but the only begotten Son in the boson of the Father, He has declared Him.” Only Jesus has seen God. As John 6:46 says, “No one has seen the Father except the one who is from God; only he has seen the Father.”
It is idolatry for any man to use their imagination to conjure up what God is like. No man has seen God because you can’t squeeze an infinite God into a finite mind, that finite mind would explode. In Exodus 34 Moses asked God to “show me your glory”, but God responded “you can’t see my face because no one can see my face and live.”
The only Person who can see God is someone who is 100 percent Man and 100 percent God. (See why Jesus is God). Jesus is the mediator between man and God and the only person who can reveal what God is like. Jesus has one hand on God and one hand on man, and therefore can reveal fully what God is like. God is Spirit (John 4:24), God is “invisible” (1 Timothy 1:16), “dwelling in unapproachable light” (1 Timothy 6:16). Jesus however is the “image of the invisible God”, revealing exactly what God is like.
In John 1:18 it says Jesus has “declared God.” The word declared in the Greek means to exegete. When we exegete something we draw meaning out of that thing. For example when we exegete the Bible we draw the objective meaning out of the Bible. The opposite of exegete is eisegete, which means to use our own imagination to place meaning on something. Man made religion eisegetes by using their own imagination to conjure up what God is like, but this is just false idolatry.
Only Jesus fully exegetes the Father, declaring to us exactly what God is like. No other person in the universe can declare what God is like. So if you want to know what God is like then look at the Son. Everything the Son does declares the Father. As the scripture says: “in Jesus is the fullness of the godhead in bodily form.” (Colossians 2:9)
The direction of salvation is always from God to man NOT man to God. Man cannot just use their reason alone to determine who God is, but rather man uses their reason to understand God’s revelation. It is God who had to reveal Himself in His word and ultimately in His Son. God’s final word to mankind is Jesus. The language God speaks to mankind is in His Son - “God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, has in these last days spoken to us by His Son.” (Hebrews 1:1-2)
Philip said to Jesus “show us the Father and it will be enough”, and Jesus responded, “have you been with me so long and you do not understand, that He who has seen me HAS seen the Father.” (John 14:9) God gave us the cross and at the cross there is God. Look at Jesus and discover exactly what God is like.
Moses couldn't see God’s face but now we can look at the face of God as we look at Jesus through the scriptures, and see “the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ” (2 Corinthians 4:6)