What the world shuns as foolishness, the Lord embraces as wisdom—the wisdom of pain to turn mere followers of Christ into disciples of Christ. Jesus called it “the cup.” To Him the cup was the anguish, humiliation, and torturous death on the cross. To us it means “taking up our cross” and following Him daily.
If a complete stranger asked if he could borrow your car for a few hours, you’d probably say no. But you would surely say yes if a close friend made the same request. We can only put our full trust in someone we’ve come to know well. That’s one reason why the study of God’s attributes is vitally important to the believer. To know Him is to trust Him. To know Him is to worship Him.
Although we can learn much by studying each of His qualities, don’t expect them all to fit together easily as if you’re piecing together a puzzle. Does God’s love fit easily next to His wrath? Does His justice fit nicely with His grace? Never cease learning more about our exalted, mighty God; just leave room for mysterious words like unsearchable and unfathomable.
The Bible makes it clear that Jesus came to earth to seek and to save those who are lost in their sin (Luke 19:10). But why did Jesus do this?
Some Bible words have been handled and mishandled for so long they've become shopworn and of very little interest to anyone. Not so with the word grace; it still retains its lustre and mystery.
The popular notion of God, as if He were a benign, aging grandfather, sitting passively in heaven—affable, lenient, permissive, and devoid of any real displeasure over sin because He loves us—cheapens God's love. It doesn't uphold the value of His love. In truth, looking into God's heart to discover His love is to discover His other attributes as well.
In the beauty of God's holiness, we see the ugliness of our wretchedness, yet we also find the encouragement to be holy…as He is.
Our belief or disbelief in God adds nothing to nor takes anything away from His glory, any more than our sight or hearing commands the sun and the birds. But if we were suddenly struck by disobedience and self-conceit to steal God's glory, even then He would remain undiminished. God's glory is His and His alone, and with no other does He share it.
Walking closely with the Lord means we must come to terms with forgiving others. Yes, must. We can’t avoid or deny the fact that relationships often bring hurt and the need to forgive.
We may take God as He really is or reject Him on the same basis, but the one opinion not open to us is to create Him as we’d like Him to be. He is and has always been the God of love and justice in both the Old and New Testaments.
The mind is an amazing thing. In a matter of seconds it can transport you to scenes you thought you had forgotten. Remember when your love for the Lord was in full bloom? Remember the passion you felt? Remember your deep devotion?
The Son proceeds from the Father like radiance from glory. Although one is distinct from the other, it is impossible for the one to exist without the other. There never was a time when glory existed without its radiance.