Life is a constant series of challenges. Sometimes during the course of a day we are challenged and must defend our position on a variety of decisions. Does God find himself in the same predicament as humans? I want you to strip away the deity and see simultaneously the humanity of Jesus Christ when you ask this question. This article does not put Jesus or God the Father on trial, the son has already been tried by mankind and crucified for the simple fact of claiming to be God. Yet, maybe that trial is being reconvened everyday in modern society. I want to quickly look at three things I believe Christians in 2020 should answer.
God sometimes doesn’t make sense.
I have been asked over the years a brevity of questions concerning statements, stories and even concepts from the Bible. If an unqualified person exists in this area of expertise it would be yours truly. I have been a Christian since the age of nine. I have read countless books on the subjects contained in the Bible, a Bible I have read through several times. This has left me with as many questions as answers. I do not understand why the Israelites were instructed to kill other groups of people? I do not understand why Jesus didn’t come to save humans during the time of Noah, when most of the earth was destroyed by a flood, clearly from the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. I don’t know why some kids starve to death in a world while others have such abundance of all resources. I can’t comprehend why the wicked seem to flourish while the good and the just seem to suffer? The one thing I have come to understand after all these years is that God loves his creation. I also understand there are no limits that God won’t endure to show his love for us. Christians in 2020 must realize we are not good judges of fairness. In a court of law they say that “Justice is blind”, but we don’t live in a court of law. Maybe I don’t understand God’s decisions because I have never understood how to be fair?
A God in my own image.
I was recently asked the question “What do you think is the most important thing in a marriage?” I had to think for a moment, while many around me were chiming in with answers such as, respect the person, being honest and other characteristics. While I think all of those are vital, my answer was “Allowing the other person to fully be themselves.” To elaborate a little, when we start any relationship we are drawn by certain great qualities we see in a person, sometimes just physical attraction. Yet, it doesn’t take long for us to decide we need to (help) them with some of their deficiencies. Do we treat God the same way? Do we believe that God is a republican? Does he object to certain genres of music? We might hope that God will remove objectionable people from our society and replace them with sensible, pragmatic people like, well, ourselves. I hear the term God is great all the time. Do we really believe that? Is it easier when things completely go our way ? It might be our lack of understanding of justice that disqualifies mankind from almost all judgements of God’s actions. Yeah, maybe a God fashioned in the image of ourselves would be desirable some days but, ultimately, it would be a disaster for humanity.
Finally, Does God neeyd to be Defended?
The world is a complicated place. We are currently experiencing the first pandemic since 1918. Artificial Intelligence is threatening to replace a host of jobs and unemployment are just two of the vast challenges facing people for the year 2021. Yet, the God of all seems more interested in the heart of a man. Our character has always been of ultimate concern to God. The question: “Does God need to be defended?” might be followed by the question “Defended from what?” Alistair Begg, a pastor I listen to on Truth for Life, says it this way “I see my faults best in other people”. That might be one of our problems with God, deferring blame to the blameless; this is something all of mankind is very good at doing. The goodness of God might be too much for a guilty mind, and we all live with guilt. I think Anthony De Mello said it well “When you are guilty, it is not your sins you hate but yourself.” No, the unfair trial of Jesus Christ showed more about human nature than we want to believe. In conclusion, I think justice isn’t always fair, but it is always needed.