How do you picture God? An old man with a grey beard holding a lightning bolt in His hand ready to strike you down at your first mistake? Someone too busy to get involved in your life or the affairs of this world?
The Bible reveals a much different picture of God.
God became man (John 1:1, 14, 18). Jesus Christ pictures God for us (John 14:9). When He reached out to the sinful Samaritan woman and changed her life forever (John 4). When He caused the blind to see and the lame to walk; the lepers to be cleansed and the deaf to hear; the dead to be raised up and the poor to have the gospel preached to them (Matthew 11:5). When He wept at the grave of His friend Lazarus (John 11). When He went to the cross to die for our sins (1 Corinthians 15:3). Paul explains that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself (2 Corinthians 5:19). He took the first step in bringing us back to Him.
Another picture that helps us to see God is found in Jesus’ parable of the prodigal son (Luke 15). Jesus begins telling a story that we have heard many times. A boy leaves home and wastes his life away until he finally decides to return home and beg his father to take him back. This is where the story depicts something you don’t hear every day. Instead of giving the boy a stern lecture and punishing him, the father greets him with compassion and throws him a welcome home party! Who could imagine that kind of a father? But that, Jesus is saying, is what God is like!
God was willing to send His Son to suffer for us. He would do anything to have His children home with Him. He loves us despite what we have done to disappoint Him. And He wants to give us a welcome home party! Come to Him, today!
Robert Dodson is the Preaching Minister for the Northwest Church of Christ.
6059 Azle Avenue
Fort Worth, TX 76135