If you were raised in church or have any type of religious background, you have been taught this over and over. This has been a point of major contention, however, with almost every other major religion! Most of the major religions do not believe that Jesus is the Son of God.
John 1:18 is a very interesting verse. It says “No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him.”
Here is a take away from this verse. Our best opportunity to know God is through the life that Jesus lived! We are going to look at three ways that the Christian view of God differs from all others.
Because of Jesus, God is near
God did not create the world and then just walk away from it, never to be seen again. We know God because we know Jesus. In most other religions God is not near. But with Christians it is different. In Romans 8:15 it tells us we get to call God our Father!!
How can we apply this to us? We need to be near, be available. We need to make sure that we are available for our spouse, our children, our church family, etc. We often get so wrapped up in work, etc. that we forget those who are dear to us.
Because of Jesus, God shows us his love
In other religions their gods do show some mercy. But God is different. He loved us when we were sinners!! Romans 5:8 says that God demonstrates His own love toward us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Jesus’s death on the cross shows that God loves His enemies. Remember what Jesus said on the cross? “Father forgive them for they do not know what they are doing.”
Jesus also told His followers that they should love others as He had loved.
How can we apply this to us? We need to love- sacrificially. That may mean to listen more and talk less. Be more giving and less hoarding. Brag more on others and God and less self-promoting.
Because of Jesus, he shows that God can suffer
This is a foreign concept to any other religion. God Suffering? Isaiah chapter 53 is a prophecy about Jesus’s death and how He was treated before His death. It was written 750 years before His birth. This chapter shows that Jesus suffered and suffered greatly. I truly believe that God suffered that day as well. He couldn’t bear to look at His Son as He hung on the cross with all the sins of the world on His shoulders.
Again, how can we apply this to us? Sometimes we need to suffer. We don’t like pain. We will do anything to alleviate it. But pain, loss, inconvenience that we endure will only build our character. James tells us that the trying of our faith produces patience
Imagine a world where God’s people imitate His attributes by following the life of Jesu
The writer is an evangelist with the North Broadway Church of Christ in Sidney.