Wednesday, August 24, 2011
Trying to Make Sense of the God of the Old Testament
I'm making bigger strides than ever in my quest to read the Bible in a year. It's August and I'm still current. I can't believe it myself. Woo hoo. Praise the Lord.
But right now I'm reading the prophetic books and BABY is it tough to hear over and over and over about how God's people disappointed Him, how evil they were, how disrespectful and vile God saw them. The announcements of their punishment tempt me to look over my shoulder to see if my every move is watched. When will the hammer come down on me? I can't help but wonder what horrible thing I've done to prostitute my love to an idol (Don't kid yourself, folks. We all do this!). I'm certain I deserve the wrath of God every bit as much as the chosen people of Israel and Judah.
Except that I have Jesus, whose blood covered my sin. How do you reconcile the God who seems so harsh in the Old Testament in a post Christ era? Does the Father view me differently because of His Son's sacrifice? Does He see the nail-scarred hands instead of my filth? Does He look at us through the lens of the Ultimate Sacrifice? Can He only see His Beloved?
Are we freed from the wrath of God when we're freed from our sin by believing in the Lord Jesus Christ?
We're still held accountable for our actions. We're still instructed to obey. But have we been spared His fury if we claim Jesus as our Savior?
Hmmm . . . this one has me puzzled. Any ideas?