Monday, November 7, 2016
NOVEMBER 7 "SO GLAD I SERVE THE GOD OF THE N.T."
I am so glad I serve the God of the New Testament. I think somewhere between Malachi and the Gospel of Mathew, the God of the Old Testament was converted. The God of the Old Testament seems like He's always judging people for their sins and angry and Jesus of course, is more like Grandpa, He's just so nice and accepting and tolerant and forgiving, almost a "pushover", but hey, that's fine with me, I'd much rather that than this angry God in the Old Testament. How could God be so different in the Old Testament as opposed to the New Testament? It almost seems like two separate Gods; unless I begin to look closer. The first place I need to go in my research of these seemingly two separate Gods, is Golgotha. When I get up to Golgotha, I see Jesus, hanging on that cross, with a crown of thorns forced unto his skull , nails driven into his hands and feet and a side pierced with a sword and a back that has it's flesh so beaten, the flesh is just hanging and then when I see this, I have to wonder, who is this Jesus and who was it that didn't like him because judging by the torture He received, somebody or some people despised him. But why? Then I remember that time he did confront the woman who had had five husbands and was shacking up with her current husband. Then I also remember the time he flipped over the tables in the Temple and began to call the people names and judge (oooops, there's that word) them for their actions. I also remember the time he called the Priests hypocrites, told them their father was the devil, he called them adulterers and thieves, now it's all coming back to me. Jesus called sin sin and sinners sinners. He really wasn't this warm gushy grandpa type of God after all, so where do I get this notion then? It's not in my bible? As a matter of a fact, when I think of it, in Revelations, Jesus seems to be full of judgment, awful and awesome judgement that almost makes the God in the Old Testament look passive. Maybe the Jesus I'm thinking of is the one that the religious world has created that is just a fictitious as Santa Clause himself. Maybe Jesus, just like Jehovah, sees all our sin and is just as angry about our sin today as he was 4000 years ago? Maybe Jesus today still does judge and bring consequences to sin, just like he did with Israel thousands of years ago. Maybe that's why I look around, read the news, talk to co-workers, and get depressed at the news (or could I say judgement) that I hear about? When I look at my life, it seems bliss compared to what I hear at work and watch on T.V. Maybe Jehovah didn't convert somewhere between Malachi and Mathew because He didn't need to. In our text in Ezekiel we read that His ultimate goal is to forgive and restore. Sounds allot like Jesus to me. Maybe the greatest understanding we in the 21st Century could gain is that we serve the same God of the Old Testament and He hasn't changed and He still does judge, get angry and bring consequences on those that blatantly and defiantly sin in the face of God. It's interesting that as we go on to read our New Testament reading in Hebrews we read "the day is coming , says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the people of Israel and Judah. ..........I will put my laws in their minds, and I will write them on their hearts, I will be their God and they will be my people." Could it be that the God of the Old Testament is the same God of the New Testament, could it be that Jehovah is Jesus? Could it be that this same God, in Old Testament and New Testament has always had the same purpose and goal in mind and that is to bring his people to a place where they would know him, know his ways, follow him in his ways so he could bless them and not have to judge them? Nothing has changed from Old to New Testament. The same sins and disobedience that brought judgment and God's disfavor 4000 years ago are the same sins and disobedience that bring judgement upon our lives in the 21st Century. And what brought blessing and prosperity upon God's people 4000 years ago is still what brings blessing upon people today; and that is, a reverent fear and obedience to God's ways. Christians that are blessed today are the ones that have the understanding that we serve the same God, and what cursed and brought judgement in the Old Testament is the same that will being cursing and judgment today and what brought blessing then is also what will bring blessing today. " I am so glad (phew) I serve the God of the New Testament", anyone who utters those words shows only their ignorance, He is the same God and He was good and merciful then, only wanting relationship with his people and He is good and merciful today, only wanting relationship with us still, " I am the Lord thy God, there is no shadow of turning in me, I am the same yesterday, today and forevermore!"