Love… The Old Testament God of… love? What?

Posted: May 16, 2012 in Uncategorized

I am joining a couple of folks who are taking time to write about each of the Fruit of the Spirit week by week…

Cool reflecting time… not just to do some kind of study… but to really write the first thing that comes to mind on the subject… of course, then I have to study to make sure what I said isn’t stupid 😉 I take big issue with things that just come out of folks’ mouths simply to sound good…

I digress…

Love… Faye and I lead a young adult small group (It just occured to me that I say these names and you may not know who they are… maybe I’ll do another post on love and it will be about these folks that I love!) and I LOVE LOVE LOVE to teach. The Lord has directed me to Ezekiel 33, so I’ve been sharing my observations from it… I’ll share some of those here.

I find it interesting that people think the Old Testament and New Testament God to be SO different. Particularly among adolescents (which I learned is now age 10 to 30… geez), I rarely here the OT mentioned. The God of the OT is viewed to be the “fire and brimstone” type. Not loving… judgemental.

Nothing could be further from the truth…

In Ezekiel 33:10, God says, “Now as for you, son of man, say to the house of Israel, ‘Thus you have spoken, saying, “Surely our trangressions and our sins are upon us, and we are rotting away in them; how then can we survive?”

Focus in on this phrase… “Thus you have spoken, saying…”

How often, when you and I wollow around in sin, do we whine and moan to God about Him not hearing us… about Him not being there… about Him not stopping us… about why we are like this…?? Thats exactly what Israel was doing here… and God HEARD. He heard them… heard their cries. Forget answering for a second… the love that God has for His people that He could listen to their constant cries of self pity and be able to repeat it back to them has to be astonding to you… it has to be… comforting to you… loving towards you. God hears you… even in your sin. He hears you.

Ezekiel 33:11… “Say to them, ‘As I live!’ declares the Lord GOD, ‘I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked turn from his way and live. Turn back, turn back from you evil ways! Why then will you die, O house of Israel?”

God isn’t a robot… same as you. You have emotions… so does God. Can you hear the emotion in this? If you can’t… learn to read the Bible different than what you are doing (read Jeremiah 2… CHARGED with emotion from the Father!). God is saying… pleading with His people… Please, please stop what you are doing… come back to Me… and live! I don’t want you to die in your sin. I want you to live!

I may ruffle some feathers with this (don’t particularly care), but one of the saddest things I have ever seen is the reactions of Christians to the death of Osama Bin Laden. I don’t care what you THINK or FEEL… God took no pleasure in the death of that man if he didn’t know Jesus when he was killed. That is God’s heart… that people would turn from following their own way and see Him… see His love for them. How amazing that the God of the OT has the same heart as the God of the NT!?

Ezekiel 33:12-16 is so terribly interesting to me… you can never build up enough equity with God to “take a break” from His ways… and you can never live a life so terrible that God will not accept you. SO BEAUTIFUL! Do you see the love in both of those!?

I don’t want you to choose sin, so you can not lean on your righteousness and what you have done when you choose sin!

I love you, so if you genuinely repent from a lifetime full of wickedness, you’ll live!

If you don’t see the love in that… man… His ways are great… the greatest… anyone who falls in line with them are rewarded!

The Father’s heart is one of love for people that know Him and for people that don’t… He recognizes that His ways are best, and that is why He wants those who don’t love Him to love Him and those who already love Him to continue to love Him above all else.

There is the Old Testament God of destructionjudgementarrogance

love

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Comments
  1. ali says:

    my ruffling feathers friend. you’re much better at it than I. (: but I really felt the same way. and I appreciate this truth about love you are sharing with the world. there aren’t separate Gods for each part of the Bible. only one loving one. thanks for the reminder. and thanks for joining our blog party!

  2. Karen Byrne says:

    aahhh…. welcome to the series, Carl. Great observations about God’s love being shown in the ENTIRE Bible.

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