The God of Jesus
Does what you do define who you are, or does who you are determine what you do? Wherever you land on that debate, we have to agree that what you do is a major indicator of who you are.
So if we want to know what God is like, maybe we should look at more than just who Jesus was, but also at what Jesus did. Please remember, not many people followed Jesus before His resurrection, it wasn't until after His resurrection that the church formed. Christianity didn't begin because people came up with something to believe, it began because people experienced the risen Jesus then wrote about it. They saw him die, looked inside an empty tomb and decided He was who He said He was.
In John 14 Jesus tells his disciples, specifically responding to Phillip, "Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father." In other words Jesus is saying, if you want to know what God is like, watch me. If you want to know what God would do, pay attention to what I do. In verse 11 Jesus says "Believe me when I say I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the works themselves." In other words, don't believe just for the sake of belief. I'm not asking to have faith for the sake of faith. I'm asking you to test the evidence. Do some digging. Watch me and what I do and determine for yourself if I am who I say I am. Don't have blind faith, believe on the evidence itself. Believe in what I say and what I do.
So with that in mind, what did Jesus say about God? Let's keep it simple, there's three main things.
First, He said God is Spirit (John 4:24). Spirit is spaceless, timeless and immaterial.
Second, He said God is Father (Luke 11:2). This is not the reflection of our earthly fathers, this is the perfection of father. What Jesus is trying to convey is that God is personal. God is not male, God does not have Gender. Any personal image used to explain that God is relational will fall short.
Third, He said God is Love (1 John 4:16). Okay Jesus didn't say this, Jesus went one step further and acted this out by dying on the cross for us. When we love each other we reflect the very nature of God.
If you have ever thought "I just believe God loves everybody" you have to concede that before Christianity that statement would've never existed. The belief that "God loves everybody" was ushered into this world by Jesus. It is a distinctly Christian idea.
May we love God and love one another the way Jesus showed us and taught us to.
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