A few years back I was engaged in a conversation and I nonchalantly referenced the Bible as the source for my opinion in response to an issue. The person, knowing I am a chaplain, looked at me and obviously perturbed stated, “If that's What God thinks then I want nothing to do with him!”
In my sincerest opinion, I thought the answer to be naïve and ignorant. I didn't say so because the person was my boss. But think about it, if by default you grant the deity the status of God wouldn't it imply that He supersedes your opinion? Thus if God differs from you does it make sense for you to divorce yourself from God? By very nature, that He is God we would then wish to submit to God since He is the author of life, creation, and knowledge.
The Old Testament is constantly reminding the people of Israel to acknowledge that there is only one true God, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. In the teaching God is warning us about turning to false idols. In modern times, those false idols are not in the shape of clay figurines or brass animals but in the precedence of our thinking.
We have come to believe we are so intelligent and wise that we’ve become the ultimate authority on everything. Genesis 1:26 informs us that humanity was made in the image of God. We are a reflection of God, not the other way around.
I don't think we pause enough to understand how great God is. When we begin to grapple with the person and character of God we are nothing but impressed and overwhelmed. It is that discovery of the absoluteness of God that grants us a desire to serve God.
This past week I preached on an Awesome God and here are some of the realities that we need to embrace about God before we can fully enter into relationship.
· God is … God has no beginning or end, Genesis 1:1 states ”in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” God was around before our time and space were created. There is a finiteness to the universe and all of its creation but not to God.
· God is absolute, constant. God is not growing in our timeline, he exists outside of our timeline thus is self-sustained and in control. Hebrews 13:8 tells us that Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. This is a proclamation on Christ being God and a revelation of God’s character.
· God is omnipresent –He is everywhere, past present and future at the same time because God is not limited by time, He is outside of time. Yet He intercedes in our world and writes Himself into our journey. Psalms 139 attests to How we can’t escape the presence of God for He is everywhere we can go, from the heights of the heavens to the depths of Sheol.
· Everything outside of God himself is created, thus all creation is dependent on God for sustainment. God creates the environment we can survive in, and the food that strengthens us. If God were to shift the sun or the moon and change our environment there would be nothing we could do to sustain ourselves.
These are but a few insights into who God is. He is outside of us and what we know of God is revealed to us by God. Rene Descartes, the French mathematician said, “the mere fact that I exist and have within me an idea of a most perfect being, that is, God, provides a very clear proof that God indeed exists… it is no surprise that God, in creating me, should have placed this idea in me to be, as it were, the mark of the craftsman stamped on his work.”
The clincher of the story is found in Psalm 8, “what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him? You made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor. the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea, all that swim the paths of the seas. O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!”
What is it about humanity that God would be so invested in us and love us so much to send His son, Jesus (God is with us), to die on a cross so we might enjoy a relationship for eternity?
Its sad that in our quest to justify our sins, excuse our proclivities, or affirm our waywardness that we would rather lose God then come to know His ways. This awesome, absolute, never changing presence that created us and loves us is calling on us to be drawn to Him and in Him we will experience transformation that will help us truly reflect His image to be the human being he designed us to be.
However it all begins with faith. We can only begin to submit ourselves to this if we believe the characteristics of God and understand the God who has created us. In such awe we come to experience Him and be renewed.