Thursday, October 2, 2008

Today's Tiny Meditation

A belief in free will is not a threat to God's ability or sovereignty. It is not a question as to whether God can or cannot save a person based on their own choosing. It isn't a question of God's power.

God can do anything He wants.

It's a question of God's Character. There are many things God can do, and certainly has the power and authority to do. In fact, there are many things my God has perfect power to do that would actually be fair and right. God could strike me dead this moment and send me to hell. He has that ability. He has that power. And with me being so vile as I am some times, it would only be right.

But is that God's character? Is that the God we know and serve? Just because He has the ability to do something, does not mean He's going to do it. God did not have to die on the cross. It was not something forced upon Him. God wanted to die on the cross, because that is the very nature of His character, of His essence. I've known my God many years. Of course, I don't know enough and have never claimed to. But I have an intimate, ever growing relationship with my heavenly Father unlike any other. I hear His voice, and know it. I talk with Him, and I listen to Him. We converse. I know how He works in my life, because I've seen it. I've felt His heart, because it beats inside of mine. I don't understand my God. I don't get Him. He's so mysterious, and I cannot comprehend it. But I have intimacy with Him. I have a relationship with Him. And I know Him. I personally know the Creator of this Universe. He is my friend.

So I would know a little something about His character, about what HE is about. He's only shown compassion. He's only shown beauty and grace. I will reiterate; My God did not have to die on a cross. But it's His character to do so. There is an urgency in His heart that moves for the compassion upon His creation. He has a heart for people. Not just saved people. Lost people as well. Actually, even more so;

"Seeing the people, He felt compassion for them, because they were distressed and dispirited like a sheep without a shepherd." Matthew 9:36

"I tell you that, in the same way, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance." Luke 15:7

The character of my God shows me compassion, mercy, grace, and care. The character of my God tells me, from His word, that He hates sin and loathes the very thought of it. God casts out the wicked, that is His character. But I would submit that His character is even more so that of a God that hates lostness, and desires foundness. He loves more than He hates. His love is greater than His hate it, and overpowers His hatred. How do I know this? Simple; The Cross. How else? His Word;

"...But where sin increased, grace abounded all the more." Romans 5:20

Now let's replace sin with "hatred of God" - because that's what sin is. It's is pure rebellion and rejection of God. And grace would be "God's love" - because no greater LOVE has any man than this than to lay down His life for His friends (John 15:13) and we know that God, laying down His life for man, was the ultimate act of love and resulted in grace for all of mankind. Let's re-read this verse;

"...But where hatred of God increased, God's love abounded all the more." Romans 5:20

He loves people, my friends. More than you or I could ever know. He loves all people. He desires all people. There is no way out of it. There is no "second will". God is God and does not change. God is not the author of confusion. God is not one to contradict Himself. God does not have one will that He keeps secret and another that He plays out. No. God is God and that should be sufficient enough. God is love. That should be sufficient enough. It is for me! God hates lostness, and desires that all men repent and turn to Him. It's beautiful. That is the character of God. That is my God, the God that reveals Himself to me daily.

Can God save an unwilling person? Sure.
Can God predestine some men to to be saved, and some to be condemned? Of course!
Can God do basically whatever He wants against our own wills? Most Definitely.

But does He?

Is it His character? Is it who He shows Himself to be? Does God's heart not break for lost men that never find their way to Him? Will it please God to see men walk straight into the depths of hell for all of eternity?

Remember; God is sovereign. But sovereign isn't even found in the Bible.
What is found is God being love. God having grace. God being merciful. God being kind. God being gentle. God being humble. God being just. God being compassionate.

My God loves all men.
My God desires all men.
My God wills that no man perish.

That is the bottom line.

And I am so thankful that I do not serve a God of Calvinism.
I am so thankful I do not serve a God of Arminianism.

I am abundantly joyful that I serve a God of His word, the Bible. And no man-made theology will tell me any different than the intimate God I've been shown for so long.

When will I get off this kick?
; )