We heard a message fromPastor Chad yesterday that started us on a road of "Fearing God". It was funny because I've had this conversation with many people, especially in small group conversations or really good Biblical talks. I've always said, "I don't like the God of the Old Testatment - He scares me" - & I get the same reaction every time from people.
"He's the same God then as He is today"
Its funny to hear everyone say the same thing - & then, there is my Pastor saying it again. The greatest comment was, "People think once you hit New Testament, He becomes God 2.0" - If you are like me, you understand what he's saying. When Chad mentioned that - I got an elbow to my ribs (thanks Christy) & a glare down the aisle from Ryan, & I'm sure many eyes beaming in the back of my head.
But, let me explain - I had a good time explaining myself again in conversations with Ryan last night too & it got me thinking more about how & why I feel this way. When you think of the God of the Old Testament - Isn't He kinda scary? Be honest! He's a jealous God - a God of wrath (admittedly) a God that people were afraid to tick off - I understand that - I don't want to tick off God - who does?
And then, when you do turn the page & hit the New Testament - it immediately starts off with Jesus - it's not necessarily the stories of the anger, wrath, lightening bolts (exaggerating) - but its a story of a baby, the story of our Savior raising from the dead - the promises of a new life - the hope of a future. It just seems like two different stories.
I do know & realize that God is the same - but that's the difference I realize - we now have Jesus! Would I be afraid of standing in front of God on my own - HECK YES! But that's what makes me so thankful for my Savior - I don't have to - Jesus will be the one who goes to God on my behalf! I don't have to be afraid! And I do thank God that He sent Jesus so I don't have to.
So when I say my comment - its not that I'm questioning that God changes - I'm just thinking of what COULD have been if we didn't have that gift of Jesus - tell me you wouldn't be scared too!
And do I have "Fear the Lord"? I feel I do - but learning more during our message, it involves more than "fear" - it entails being in awe of His work - Respecting him - standing in Reverence of Him. I will admit - I am in Awe of His works every day - but I want to stand more in awe every day - see things through new eyes - see more of Him in the world & more importantly through me.
This is going to be some good learning....