Thursday, December 31, 2015

The God Who is Up Close and Personal

Thursday, December 31, 2015

For God is Spirit, so those who worship him must worship in spirit and in truth.”  John 4:24(NLT)
In speaking to the Samaritan woman at the well, Jesus revealed the great truth that our God is not impressed with outward displays of righteousness.  He exists in a realm that provides Him with access to the inner being of any man or woman. 

Jesus saw the deep spiritual need of the woman, and he knows our needs also.  It is possible to please God only when the inner person – that spirit within each of us – is in harmony with the heart of a spiritual God.  Jesus told us in His earthly ministry that the only way to come to the Father was through Him.  And so that tells us that it is only possible to worship God by accepting Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord.

The personality of God is seen in the personal way God has dealt with mankind.  From a bush that burned, and was not consumed, God said to Moses, I Am.  Reality and cognizant existence are personal qualities.  God weeps, loves, hates, cares, creates and feels loss. 

There is one concept of God called pantheism which says that God is in everything, literally.  He is in trees, grass, oceans, a component part.  This robs God of personality, making him merely substance, or part of the creation. 

God is personal, and He takes a personal interest in His creation. 

There are those who may still subscribe to the idea of a "hands-off" type of God.  This was popular in the 1950's and early 60's.  This pictures God as a creator who made the world like a craftsman makes a grandfather clock, winds it up, and lets it run by itself; God never interferes, man can take care of himself. 

How different is the biblical view of God!

The LORD is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth.  Psalm 145:18(NLT)

In one episode of "The X-Files," agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully are discussing a prison chaplain who claims that God speaks directly to him. When Mulder expresses skepticism that such a thing could ever happen, Scully asks:   Don't you think God can talk with people?

Mulder replies:  God is just a spectator. He only reads the box scores.[2]

But that's not the way it was when the children of Israel cried-out to God from bondage in Egypt.  God rocked the kingdom of Pharaoh until he drove them out.  God didn't apply hands off when they were boxed-in with mountains on two sides, Pharaoh's army behind, and the Great Red Sea in front.  God's personal breath blew every last drop out of the way, and His personal family walked over on dry land. 

Humankind numbers in the billions, and with all His creation, Yahweh is a personal God who loves us consciously. 

How Up Close and Personal is our God?  The world was lost in sin and degradation, and the personal God who loved us came to our rescue…as one of us. 

For You Today

The question (for those humans who choose to honestly face reality) never centers on whether or not God knows everything about us, or wants to be personally involved with us.  It’s more a question as to whether we will respond to His invitation, and begin to know Him personally and up close.

You chew on that out on that Rocky Road today…and have a joy-filled and blessed day!

[1] Title image:  Henryk Siemiradzki [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
[2] Stephen Nordbye, Charlton, Massachusetts

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