Trust: The "Godness" of God
This is the third post in a weekly series of mini-devotionals on TRUST, which is the theme of the 2015 June 2 Worldwide Prodigal Prayer Day. This letter goes to the members of the Prayer for Prodigals community, but it is true for all of us.
Dear Lover of Prodigals,
If we are to trust God in this challenging journey with our prodigals, we need to see that He is trustworthy. The pain and suffering and horror in the world, and our own pain and suffering, raise questions for us, yes, even doubts.
Most of our study this year will be on discovering, grasping, knowing God more than we do so we can see how totally, utterly, completely trustworthy He is.Last week we got a tiny glimpse of His glory. This week we are going to let God speak for Himself—to tell us a little of who He is. I will make small attempts to bring these words home to us in our lives with prodigals.
All the names of God in the Bible give us pictures of what He is like. Most of those names we learn as writers of different books of the Bible identify Him with a name. Sometimes God tells us a name Himself. Here are a few of those. (Jesus claimed many names, and we will look at those later.
“God said to Moses, ‘I am who I am. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: “I Am has sent me to you.”’” God is the eternal present tense. He has no beginning or ending. He is always here with us. (Exodus 3:14)
El Emunah--the Faithful God
“Know therefore that the Lord your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commandments.” Scripture also tells us God must be faithful because He must be true to who He is. (Deuteronomy 7:9)
El Gibor—the Mighty God
“For the Lord your God is the God of gods and the Lord of lords, the great, the mighty, and the awesome God…” In God’s conversation with Moses when He once again gives the Ten Commandments, He reminds Moses that He is a mighty God. The children of Israel had just made and worshiped a golden calf—a paltry idol. We love and serve the true, mighty, awesome God. (Deuteronomy 10:17)
El Shaddai—God Almighty,the All-Sufficient God
When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to him and said, “I am God Almighty…” Once again we see our God is not powerless, but powerful. He is so powerful that His might is sufficient for every need—and we and our loved ones have many needs. (Genesis 1:17)
Jehoval Rapha—God the Healer
“He said, “If you listen carefully to the Lord your God and do what is right in his eyes, if you pay attention to his commands and keep his decrees, I will not bring on you any of the diseases I brought on the Egyptians, for I am the Lord, who heals you.” Certainly we and our prodigals are in need of healing—and God can do that. (Exodus 15:26
)Jehovah Tsidkenu—God Our Righteousness
“Say to the Israelites, ‘You must observe my Sabbaths. This will be a sign between me and you for the generations to come, so you may know that I am the Lord, who makes you holy.’” We know we can’t make ourselves holy, and our loved ones are far from holy. But God imparts His righteousness to us. (Exodus 31:13)These names of God give just a small picture of His magnificence and His gifts to us. Let’s consider another image of the “godness” of God.
God Speaks to Job
After Job has suffered greatly both from Satan’s attacks and his friends’ words, God Himself comes to Job with a dizzying interrogation. Job chapters 38-40 are pure poetry, profoundly reminding us that our God is beyond our comprehension. Here are the first verses of Job 38:
Then theLordanswered Job out of the whirlwind and said,
2 “Who is this that darkens counselBy words without knowledge?
3 Now gird up your loins like a man,And I will ask you, and you instruct Me!
4 “Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth?
Tell Me, if you have understanding,
5 Who set its measurements? Since you know.
Or who stretched the line on it?
6 “On what were its bases sunk?
Or who laid its cornerstone,
7 When the morning stars sang together
And all the sons of God shouted for joy?
8 “Or who enclosed the sea with doors
When, bursting forth, it went out from the womb;
9 When I made a cloud its garment
And thick darkness its swaddling band,
10 And I placed boundaries on it
And set a bolt and doors,
11 And I said, ‘Thus far you shall come, but no farther;
And here shall your proud waves stop’?
God’s Mighty Power
12 “Have you ever in your life commanded the morning,
And caused the dawn to know its place,
13 That it might take hold of the ends of the earth,
And the wicked be shaken out of it?
14 “It is changed like clay under the seal;
And they stand forth like a garment.
15 “From the wicked their light is withheld,
And the uplifted arm is broken.
16 “Have you entered into the springs of the sea
Or walked in the recesses of the deep?
17 “Have the gates of death been revealed to you,
Or have you seen the gates of deep darkness?
18 “Have you understood the expanse of the earth?
T ell Me, if you know all this.
19 “Where is the way to the dwelling of light?
And darkness, where is its place,
20 That you may take it to its territory
And that you may discern the paths to its home?
21 “You know, for you were born then,
And the number of your days is great!
22 “Have you entered the storehouses of the snow,
Or have you seen the storehouses of the hail,
23 Which I have reserved for the time of distress,
For the day of war and battle?
24 “Where is the way that the light is divided,
Or the east wind scattered on the earth?
25 “Who has cleft a channel for the flood,
Or a way for the thunderbolt,
26 To bring rain on a land without people,
On a desert without a man in it,
27 To satisfy the waste and desolate land
And to make the seeds of grass to sprout?
28 “Has the rain a father?
Or who has begotten the drops of dew?
29 “From whose womb has come the ice?
And the frost of heaven, who has given it birth?
30 “Water becomes hard like stone,
And the surface of the deep is imprisoned.
”At the beginning of chapter 40, God pauses:
Then the Lord said to Job,
2 “Will the faultfinder contend with the Almighty?Let him who reproves God answer it.”
3 Then Job answered the Lord and said,
4 “Behold, I am insignificant; what can I reply to You?I lay my hand on my mouth.
5 “Once I have spoken, and I will not answer;Even twice, and I will add nothing more.”
I imagine that He fell on His face, joining Moses, Joshua, Daniel, John and others when confronted with the incomprehensible reality of God.
As should we.
(Perhaps you would want to click over to worship with Chris Tomlin in “Indescribable”)
May God continue to prepare our hearts to intercede for our own prodigals and so many others.
Trusting in Him,
What about you? How do you respond?
c2015 Judy Douglass