What is God Like?

mosesbush.gifAs we continue on in our series in the book of Exodus we reached a very well known passage on Sunday. In Exodus 3 God speaks to Moses through a burning bush that was not consumed! That will break up a monotonous day as a shepherd of sheep! Is the burning bush that wasn’t consumed supposed to be the part we remember most? I don't think so. The glory of Exodus 3 is not the burning bush; the glory of Exodus 3 is the God of the burning bush! God spoke to Moses about who He is. From God's words to Moses we encounter a God who is all-powerful, holy, compassionate, and imminent. Now Exodus 3 does not fully convey who God is, but it is God's self-revelation. Knowing who God is, as God reveal himself, may be the greatest need of the church today. It kind of gets tiring hearing it all the time, but it is true that we live in a culture that trivializes God, and relegates him to our perceptions and what we want him to be, instead of who he actually is. Patrick Morley captured it well, saying,

“Cultural Christianity means to seek the God we want instead of the God who is. It is the tendency to be shallow in our understanding of God, wanting Him to be more of a gentle grandfather type who spoils us and lets us have our own way. It is sensing a need for God, but on our own terms. It wants the God we have underlined in our Bibles without wanting the rest of Him, too. It is God relative instead of God absolute.”

I think his phrase, "sensing a need for God, but on our own terms", is an apt description of the spirit of the age in our culture. I am guilty. I want deliverance on my timetable; I do not want steadfastness to be complete. I want my change and change in other people to be faster than the best Internet speed. I do want surrender, but my version of it. Can you relate? When I do that, when I sense a need for God, but on my own terms, I am missing the fullness of who God is, and therefore, the fullness of all that Jesus has done for me, and now lives to intercede to accomplish completely. God is all-powerful; so Jesus was born of a woman without an earthly father! God is holy; so he sent Jesus to be our holiness since we never could be holy on our own! God is compassionate; so God's mercy triumphs over his righteous judgment. God is imminent; so when Jesus ascended into Heaven to intercede for us and prepare a place for us, we were not left as orphans. We were given the Holy Spirit, to be with us and in us!

These are just a few of the reasons I am reminded again that what I truly want is God as He reveals Himself, not a god of my own making. May we yearn for God, as God has revealed himself, today, friends. We can boldly approach him through Jesus! And let us rejoice that our God is "God, and not man – the Holy One among you." Hosea 11:9

[1] Patrick Morley, Pastoring Men, pg. 68