Many people who claim to love God and follow Him soon get misinformed, confused, disappointed, or fearful on the journey of faith and they begin to fashion a god made in their image rather than the God of the Bible who made us in His image.
The God of the Bible is a loving Creator who is all-powerful, all-knowing, is present everywhere at once, and sovereign over His creation. His promises are sure, His covenants immutable, and His love without limit. He loves us so much that Christ came to live in flesh a life for us we could never live. He was perfectly obedient, never doing anything wrong and never failing to do everything right. He took our cumulative sins upon himself, becoming the sinner, and died for us, in our place, and gives us His perfect righteousness as a free gift, making us His dear children forever. After being dead three days He defeated death by being raised to life just as He promised, guaranteeing that we too can live with Him forever. This loving benevolent King of the universe is the only true God.
Maybe because of our inherent flaws and imperfections, maybe because of our lack of faith, or maybe because we are misinformed, we sometimes forsake the God presented in Holy Scriptures and fashion a God who is sort of like us, in our image.
The God some of us have is limited with human qualities. His love is not consistent, it is not free, and not dependable. So, we doubt His love for us, we try to make deals with God, we think if we can be good enough, unselfish enough, perform better than our peers, then He will love us, or love us more.
We are never sure why, but we are convinced that when something bad happens, the death of a loved one, a business failure, an a/c unit quits, God must be punishing us. I must have done something wrong or this would not have happened.
We can never live our lives so well that we don’t disappoint even ourselves. If I can’t consistently live up to my own standards how can God approve of my life? So we go to church at the appointed times and eat the bread and drink the juice, sing the songs and promise ourselves we will do better but secretly we cower in fear, certain that God doesn’t really love us like we want to be loved.
Can it be that we don’t know ourselves well enough? Perhaps if we can look at ourselves the way God sees us we might not live a lie.
These are some of the descriptions God gives us in the Bible of humanity without Him. He says the thoughts and intentions of their hearts are wicked, that not even one person is good, that every single person goes his own way, away from God. He says all of us are spiritually dead, are in darkness, live to satisfy our bodies, are his enemies, and are targets of His coming wrath on sin. Pretty grim huh? A dead person has nothing at all to offer God, his only need his life. An unrighteous person’s greatest need is righteousness. A person in utter darkness desperately needs light. And a person who is a slave to sin and Satan needs to be rescued and set free.
What shall we do? What is our response to our impending death and our ever-present sin. We are powerless to do anything about either. The Bible says that”the mind that is set on the flesh (self) is hostile to God and does not submit to God, indeed it cannot.” (Romans 8:7) “Cannot?” Left to ourselves there is not a tiny glimmer of hope.
The good news about Christ is that God in flesh solved every problem we had and is full of grace and truth. Let’s chose to live by Truth and not live a Lie.
Those who repent and put their trust in Jesus Christ as Lord are given these promises and more.
They have “eternal life”, they share in “His life”. Even when the physical body expires they will not die, they will live forever.
They are forgiven and guilt is gone. The penalty of the law is dismissed. They are adopted into the family of God. They are joint heirs with Jesus. They will have bodies like Jesus at the resurrection with no earthly limitations. God’s love is limitless and full and free. Even when his children fail to live as well as they should His love is still there in full.
You and I are safe in Christ. Let us purpose to love and honor the God of the Bible who made us in His image. May our response to God’s love be lives that represent our loving God well. Lets love everyone and trust God to make us better. And, let us welcome Him as He is, the God who made us and loves us without end.