The Self-Disclosure of God

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Jesus puts God on display:
He is what God looks like (Heb. 1:3).
He is what God lives like (Jn. 5:19).
He is what God loves like (Rom. 5:8).
He is what God has to say (Jn. 14:10).

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God’s Utterance

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Jesus of Nazareth is God’s utterance. He is the Word of God because no more thorough, personal, and beautiful revelation of God is possible.

He who is the perfect statement and rhetoric of the Father, the revealer of divinity, shows up in the form of a servant and sufferer and overturns our notions of deity. The One who is to be worshiped, exalted, and obeyed comes to serve and to give and to lay down His life for others. He unveils the essential truth and unsurpassing glory of the divine nature—a God who pulsates with goodness and power and love and beauty. Jesus reveals a God whose blessedness lies in giving rather than receiving, whose essence is an overflowing, unstoppable tsunami of grace. “Jesus Christ is the mercy of God,” wrote Karl Barth, “he is the love of God, he is the open heart of God.”

The Lord of glory has made Himself know in His Son—and He turns out to more wonderful than we ever imagined.

-J.O. Schulz

What is God like?

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One of Gary Larson’s famous The Far Side cartoons depicts God sitting at his computer, on which is displayed an image of a man strolling innocently down the sidewalk. A grand piano hangs precariously over the fellow’s head, supported by slender ropes. God’s hand is hovering over the keyboard, His index finger about to strike the “SMITE” key.

Larson’s cartoon is funny, but also tragic. It reflects a notion in the minds of many of a God who takes delight in judging and smiting.

Most people have serious questions about the kind of God they’re dealing with. Sadly, many Christians cannot shake the notion that God is a stern celestial patriarch fussy, easily annoyed, demanding and reluctant to forgive. Our twisted ideas about God are deeply entrenched.

Popular notions of God tend to gravitate to two extremes: harsh impacable hostility or sappy doting benevolence. Omni-anger or omni-mush.

The God who exists is neither.

He is exactly like Jesus.

There is no ominous God who lurks behind Jesus. If we have seen the Son, we have seen the Father. Jesus is the final answer to the question, “What is God like?” We have a Christ-like God. Jesus is the truth about God.

God is neither a sadist judge, nor doting grandfather. He is a Calvary-like God. He is a turbulent, ardent, holy, fiery, awesome, passionate Lover. And He has set his affections on you.

That is the most staggering piece of news you will ever hear.

–J. O. Schulz

Love is a Person

Jesus said, “He that has seen Me, has seen the Father.” Christ came to reveal to each one of us the God that nobody knew. There were the fiery gods of the pagans, demanding the sacrifice of children to appease their demands. There were the brooding gods of the Hindus, leaving man in a never-ending-circle of searching — only to worship a cow.

There were the capricious gods of the Greeks, who leave man in doubt and dismay at the unpredictable twists and turns of life. And, of course, there is the angry god of Muslims, who evidently requires that his devotees slay all infidels to prove their faith, and then kill themselves in an unholy holy act to insure themselves 70 virgins in heaven. (By the way, did anyone bother to ask the virgins how they feel about this?)

And even the Christian Faith is filled with mixed images and vain imaginations about the One True God — leaving most of us motivated out of guilt, shame, or fear — rather than faith, hope, and love.

But God is Love — and we need only look into the face of Jesus and all our confusion about God is dispelled. So, now abides faith, hope and love — and the greatest of these is Love. For faith is a power, hope is a promise, but Love is a Person.

–James Ryle

Published in: on 02/29/2012 at 7:07  Leave a Comment  
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A photo of God

Take this reverently:
snap a photo of Jesus
and you’ve got God on film.

–Joni Eareckson

The human life of God

The Word is not a spelled out Word, it is a lived-out Word. He is indeed the speech of eternity translated into the language of time, but the language is a Life. God’s method is a Man. Jesus is God speaking to man in the street. He is God meeting me in my environment, a human environment. He is God showing his character in the place where our characters are formed. He is the human life of God. He is that part of God which we have been able to see. And if the rest of God is like this that we have been able to see, then all is right. God means well and he means to make us well.

–E. Stanley Jones

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