John T. Willis

Monday, August 29, 2005

The People of God: God's Child--III

What important truths does the Bible teach us by comparing God with a parent, and God's people with a child or children?

1. The relationship between God and his people is personal and intimate. God is not a machine or a robot or a thing. God is a person. Thus, God is not pre-programmed to think or act or speak in a certain way. God thinks, acts, and speaks like a person interacting with and in response to whatever is happening at the time. This is very complex, since there are so many factors involved. Thus, it is not surprising that God may act one way under one set of circumstances, and another way in another set of circumstances.

2. As a person, God has deep emotional feelings toward his people. The Bible says God "loves" his people (Hosea 11:1; Psalm 103;11), "becomes angry with" his people (Exodus 4:14; Psalm 78:31), "has compassion on" his people (Psalm 103:4, 8, 130), "forgives" his people by his "grace" (Psalms 32:1-2, 5; 51:1-2; 130:3-4; Ephesians 2:8-10), etc. Similarly, God desires that human beings love him as a living person (Deuteronomy 6:4-5; Luke 15:11-32), listen to and follow his teachings (Psalms 1:1-3; 119:5, 9, 11, 34; 1 John 5:1-3), be open constantly to his workings in their lives (Philippians 2:12-16), etc.

3. God provides for, cares for, and protects his people, like a parent provides for, cares for, and protects his/her child. And, in turn, God's people are totally dependent on God for everything in their lives just as a child is dependend on his/her parents. Isaiah 40:11; Jeremiah 31:7-10; etc.

John Willis