On this theme, I am beating a dead horse, but then again, I find that too many Christians are riding a similar dead horse, so once again this horse needs to be whipped so that people stop riding it in the first place.
I do not want to believe in my conception of God. I do not want to believe in anyone else's conception of God.
And yet, too many people are coming to God and interacting with our loving Father via the conceptions of preachers, pastors, and teachers. We need to consult God's Word to see who God is.
If we can conceive of God, He would no longer be God. I cannot begin to understand how any divine or supernatural intelligence could have brought this world, the entire universe into being, yet even then such a conception does not begin to help us really understand who God is.
We know who He is based on His Word.
And throughout His Word, we read:
"Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good. His mercy endures forever." (Psalm 136:1)
The LORD is good.
His mercy (His grace) endures forever!
Most people do not know this, or they do not believe this about God. They simply do not know or believe.
Yet John shared the following:
"And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him." (1 John 4:16)
There is no way anyone of us could have figured this out or come up with this on our own. No way.
It takes revelation, because our reason cannot begin to grasp this amazing truth about our loving Heavenly Father.
Consider also how great this love is for us!
"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." (John 3:16)
There is no way that I could ever understand a loving God sending His own Son to die for me.
Paul expounds on this massive revelation:
"6For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. 7For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. 8But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." (Romans 5:6-8)
Sure, one man might die for a good person, or even a great person. But the notion that God Himself would send His Beloved Son to die for all of mankind, you and me, when were still red-blooded rebels against God, alienated from His life and love for us (Ephesians 2:12), that is something that we cannot begin to understand.
For that reason, Paul prayed this prayer, and urged us to pray the same in turn:
"17That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, 18May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; 19And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God." (Ephesians 3:17-19)
Some people will tell you to settle for whatever conception of God they can come up with. Most people end up coming up with some abusive conception of God based on how their parents treated them, or based on the stuffy, legalistic rationale that most pastors and preachers push on their congregation.
I want to know Him and see Him in His gracious fullness. I do not want to be stuck, sand-bagged with the crappy ideas of what someone else thinks God is like. If we go with our own conception of God, we are stuck living in our heads, trying to make sense of everything.
That's what happened to me, because that is what I was taught for so long.
No, I do not want to believe in my or anyone else's conception of God. I want to believe and receive the truth conception of the living, loving SAVIOR OF THE WORLD!
This is the Savior we need to believe in:
"Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent." (John 6:29)
If that is the only work, then we need to know Him, not ourselves. We cannot know Jesus through our own efforts. We need to see Him and receive Him through His Word!
"25Then he said unto them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken: 26Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory? 27And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself." (Luke 24:25-27)
Jesus taught of Himself. He didn't talk about having a great marriage. He didn't talk about getting rich, or dying trying. He didn't talk about how to have a healthy family or a great career or calling.
He taught of Himself, and we are not going to Himself except through the Word of God.
It's all about Jesus, not ourselves. He is our focus, for He is our life (Colossians 3:4).
Consider Peter's last words in the New Testament as a testimony to what we should all be focusing on:
"18 But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen." (2 Peter 3:18)
There's an "Amen" at the end of that prayer! Let's make Jesus our focus, since He is so focused on us. He is good, and His grace endures forever!