Tue May 21, 2013
by Amanda Edmondson
From prison to ReTrain: Russell’s story
Mon May 20, 2013
9 types of leaders in Scripture
Mon May 20, 2013
by Justin Holcomb
5 bits of wisdom for the professional Christian woman
Sun May 19, 2013
by Shandel Slaten
Sat May 18, 2013
by Hugh Whelchel
Divine Warrior & Compassionate God
“We tend by a secret law of the soul to move towards our mental image of God.” - A.W. Tozer
In his book Your God Is Too Small, J. B. Phillips explains various conceptions of God people have:
the resident policeman, the parental hangover, the grand old man, meek and mild, absolute perfection, the heavenly bosom, God in a box, the managing director, the second-hand God, the perennial grievance, and the pale Galilean.
The current religious favorite of American culture is the Faraway God (a vague religiosity also known as Moralistic Therapeutic Deism). This religion views God as a cosmic buddy who wants us to be good and nice, but doesn’t really get involved in the world beyond giving good advice.
The Bible gives us a vastly different picture of God. Take Psalm 8, for example.
The first stanza (Ps. 8:1-2) ties God’s majestic name (“Yahweh”) with victory. The Lord is the Divine Warrior who fights on behalf of his people against the enemy of his people. This psalm is not just about what God is like, but also about what God does. This refers to the nature of God and the activity of God. As Christians we read this psalm after Jesus has come and revealed what God is like perfectly and revealed what God does—fight against our enemy (Col. 2:15).
In the second stanza (Ps. 8:3-4), David looks with his naked eye into the expanse of the sky and writes a poem to remind us of the necessity of never limiting God to the size of our own understanding, or even a group of doctrines we have put together.
God the Creator is the same God who is mindful of us and cares for us.
Images of God
The third stanza (Ps. 8: 5-9) is directly linked to Genesis 1:28 and 9:1-7. Humans were given a dignity as the image of God and charged to serve and protect God’s creation. We were to be vice-regents over creation. But through sin we lost our understanding of this dignity. David here is demonstrating our restoration to dignity. God re-established David and us out of the mire of futility and is returning us to our original place of dignity.
“I Will Be Your God…”
David is looking at the divine warrior who fights for us, is mindful of us, and cares for us. He is reminded of Adam’s failure and loss of dignity and sees God’s restoration and calling. That is why this psalm begins and ends with an amazing worship pronouncement: “O Lord, our Lord.” This little phrase speaks volumes. It is about the magnificent transcendence of God and about the God who relates to his creation in compassion and care.
We commend to people the creator God, the compassionate caring God, the redeeming God, the companion God. This God was awe-inspiring to David. The God who made the immense universe also cares for everyone in it. This is the God who sees us as his children, who sees beyond the failures, event, motives, and anguish of our life. He comes near to us and says “I will be your God and you will be my people” (Lev. 26:12).