Last night I was thinking about my Father, and how so many don't know Him as He really is. I thought of the many concepts that go together to reveal the Father and the Son as they really are. I thought I would write a little about them, and the joy they bring me.
The thing that ultimately paints God wrongly the most is a false understanding of life source. If we understand that God has life and we also have life, then whenever God "kills" someone, He is pictured as a murderer. So when people ask how verses that say God doesn't change (James 1:17), God is love (1 John 4:8), and God "slays utterly" (Ezekiel 9:6), add up, they get no solid answers.
However, if you understand that only God has life (1 Corinthians 8:6), and He freely gives us life through the channel of His Son, then God is no longer pictured as a murderer. When we sin, we in effect say to God, "I don't want you," which is basically saying we don't want life, because He is the source of life. Therefore, by default God must respect our wish and turn off our supply of life. It is only by the life of Jesus that we can have a probationary life to decide whether asking for the life to be turned off is really a good idea. This paints a much better picture of God, and is the most key thing to seeing God as a loving Father.
We receive life and blessing through the channel. The channel flows through God's appointed agencies, such as Jesus, the church, and our earthly father. If we are inline with what God has said then we can receive life and blessing through this channel.
If everyone had their own life, then being under any of God's appointed human agencies wouldn't seem like a good idea, as all humans are sinners, and have failed at times. Take Abraham for example, we receive blessing through him (Galations 3:7-16; Romans 4:16), but he failed in a number of ways. If he had his own life, then we would be in trouble. But if the life and blessing of God simply flows through human agents, then we have nothing to worry about; if Abraham did go completely off the rails never to return (which he didn't), then God will fix the problem so we can continue receiving His life and blessing.
The Father, His Son, and Their Spirit
Understanding the God Head relies on understanding life source and the channel concepts. If you understand that the Father is not a real Father, and the Son is not a real Son, then that paints God as an actor, a liar, or similar. It also takes away the whole relational aspect to God, which leaves us with no example of relationships for our lives.
I'm not a theologian, and I certainly don't understand tri-theism and the trinity all that well; those doctrines are just plain confusing, mind boggling, and destructive. However, even though I'm not a theologian or something similar, I find it easy to understand how there is a Father and a Son (If you want some scripture for this, the best thing I can do is recommend that you watch the presentation "God and His Son" by Gary Hullquist. This presentation has many, many bible verses on the topic of Father and Son). And by the way, not only does it make a whole lot of sense, it also makes me feel so much better about God, and that I can actually have a deep relationship with Him.
The fact that they have a Spirit, makes sense through the channel concept. Their Spirit simply flows through the channel to those who are in it. This makes more sense than having a completely separate, mysterious third person.
The Plan of Salvation
Understanding the plan of salvation in a right way is crucial to seeing God as He is. As with pretty much everything, it relies on a correct understanding of life source. Some questions on this topic are, why did Jesus have to die? If we all have our own life, couldn't God just forget about our sins? After all we both have our own life, right? Why did God require someone to die?
A correct understanding of life source answers these questions. Since we are dependent on God, and sin is a way of asking God to stop giving us life (hence "the wages of sin is death"; Romans 6:23), by default we would die. Because of Adam's decision, he corrupted the human mind, which (without Christ's life) doomed us to death. But, Jesus was able to come down, take the place of Adam (1 Corinthians 15:45) and by His life, form us a new mind which He now offers us, and by His death, kill the old sinful mind.
With this understanding, God is no longer painted as someone who wanted someone to die for sin, just because He doesn't like it. In fact, because of the channel concept, God suffered with His Son (2 Corinthians 5:19); He wasn't just watching the show.
God's Love in Hell
Why does God "burn people" for any amount of time (whether it be for eternity or a moment)? How can God love someone, yet end up "burning them"? These are questions that can't properly be answered with a wrong understanding of hell. If we have life, and God has life, then hell is God taking our life from us, and in a very horrible way too.
However, if we receive life from God, then God hell is God giving us what we, in effect, asked for. On top of this, hell in not about physical pain, it's about emotional pain. When sinners realise they rejected the most loving and wonderful being in the universe and His Son, they will experience a horrible emotional pain. Dad speaks of this in His sermon God's Love in the Flames of Hell.
In the coverage of this in Ellen White's book, The Story of Redemption, it says that at the end the wicked will turn of the demons and everyone will start to tear each other the apart. In this light, the fire and brimstone is really just to end their misery and clean up the mess. Even if the wicked did have physical pain, like Jesus on the cross, they would hardly notice for reason of their emotional pain. This paints a much better picture of God; He is not a torturer, as the traditional doctrine of hell states, but a loving God.
This is a beautiful one, that God is our Father. He, out of His love, has adopted us as His sons and daughters. He cares for us, like a loving earthly Father would, but so much more. This makes me so grateful, and thankful to God, that he should adopt me, a sinner, as His son!
Christ clearly indicates that this is the case in John 20:17 where He says, "my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God," and also in Matthew 6:9, where He begins the Lord's prayer with "Our Father which art in heaven."
When you understand this, and you watch the Father's Love Letter imagining that it is God speaking to you; it's really powerful.
In this blog, I have talked about some of most wonderful and key concepts to understanding who God is. When you understand these, God seems like so much more wonderful before. Praise God for giving us these revelations, so we can understand Him better!