We saw in our previous posts in this series (1, 2, 3) that what we believe about God, his character, his heart towards us, shapes everything else in our life and faith. In this post, because of that, let’s draw our eyes towards the Lord and see what He is really like. Let’s see what he thinks about you. Is He just putting up with us, tolerating us? Is he just watching from Heaven, waiting to jump on us after every little mistake? Let’s find out.
How do we know what God is like? John 1:18 tells us: “No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father’s side, he has made him known.” So, how do we know what God the Father is like? Jesus reveals Him! We cannot know God apart from Jesus. He is the exact representation of His nature. That is a very important point for us.
That means there is not some unkind, ugly god lurking in the dark somewhere who is only holding back his hatred for us because of Jesus. No! God is, as I first heard from Glen Scrivener, “Jesus-shaped” from first to last. The famous poet, Lord Byron once said, “If God’s not like Jesus, He should be!” But, HE IS! That’s why Jesus has said, “if you’ve seen me, you’ve seen the Father,” meaning you know what the Father is like because you see what I’m like. I’m the image of the invisible God. I only do what I see the Father doing…so when Jesus is loving us, he’s just doing what the Father is doing! He doesn’t have to rescue a cantankerous God…no, the Father is all loving! I think this is where we get into a lot of trouble…
If you try to imagine God without Jesus, you are thinking of an idol. LET ME SAY THAT AGAIN. If you try to imagine God without Jesus, you are thinking of an idol. Michael Ramsey, former archbishop of Canterbury, put it this way, “God is Christlike, and in Him there is no unchristlikeness at all.” God is Jesus-shaped! In fact, let’s start to use that title “God” a lot less. Instead, let’s talk about our loving Father and our brother and husband, Jesus, who has come to save us, and the Holy Spirit who makes all of the Father’s promises, which are YES in Jesus, true for us!
So, if we want to know what the Father thinks of us, and how he feels about us, how he is towards…we look to Jesus. And that’s just what we’re going to do in the next post.