#639: God Undiluted

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Reflections by the Pond
January 20, 2014

Behold, the Lord God will come with might,
With His arm ruling for Him.
Behold, His reward is with Him
And His recompense before Him.
Like a shepherd He will tend His flock,
In His arm He will gather the lambs
And carry them in His bosom;
He will gently lead the nursing ewes.

Isaiah 40:10-11

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Those who paint the Lord God in simple, primary colors, like little children finger-painting in Kindergarten, do Him a gross disservice. There is nothing simple or basic, or monochromatic about God.

Oh, it is true that He can present Himself in such a way that those of simple mind can know Him. And when it comes to the fundamentals about sin and righteousness He can be starkly black and white. But there are also shades in His rainbow that man has never devised; the most comprehensive paint chart on earth will never include all His colors.

To say God is multi-hued or multi-dimensional is to condemn with faint praise. There are more dimensions to Him than man can even imagine. For example, the Lord God is omnipotent: His strength and might are terrible; mere flesh quakes before it.

"Therefore, thus says the Lord God, ‘Because all of you have become dross, therefore, behold, I am going to gather you into the midst of Jerusalem. As they gather silver and bronze and iron and lead and tin into the furnace to blow fire on it in order to melt it, so I will gather you in My anger and in My wrath and I will lay you there and melt you. I will gather you and blow on you with the fire of My wrath, and you will be melted in the midst of it. As silver is melted in the furnace, so you will be melted in the midst of it; and you will know that I, the Lord, have poured out My wrath on you.'"

Ezekiel 22:19-22

The "Father" of the gospels, the letters of Paul, and the Revelation is the very same God of the Law, of Sodom and Gomorrah's brimstone, of the Egyptian and Babylonian captivity. He has and will do things frightful to beings of mere flesh.

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Yet, by contrast, this same God is love. God does not just express love or demonstrate love or feel love, He is love.

We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.

1 John 4:16

In Christ we have the fullest demonstration of such imponderable love:
In His incarnation the unselfishness of God's love.
In His teaching and life "the breadth and length and height and depth" of God's love.
In His death upon the cross the sacrificial nature of God's love.
In His resurrection the wonder, the mystery, and the compassion of God's love.

° ° °

Father God is both of these—wrath and love—undiluted. His expression of one does not diminish the other. In any one moment of eternal time God the Father is both terrible, awful wrath capable of raining fire upon mankind, and the most tender, expressive love, cradling gently in His arms every individual that comes to Him by faith.

° ° °

Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren. Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.

James 1:16-17