Summary: How does one connect to the Invisible God? Peter tells us how, in this sermon.
2 Peter 1:16-19 CONNECTING TO THE INVISIBLE
Last Sunday, the big thing in the news was that the people of Iraq voted. What gave them the confidence to vote? Up until that day, they were told by some of their fellow countrymen that if they voted, they would be blown up. They were being threatened by the terrorists that live in their country. And they had seen some of the different attacks that were being carried out. What gave them the confidence they needed to walk to a polling place and vote?
It was all that visible security. Did you see pictures of it? All the barbed wire fence surrounding some of the polling places. Concrete barriers. Heavily armed guards. When the Iraqis saw all that visible security, that gave them the confidence they needed to cast their vote last weekend.
We need to see things too, to bolster our confidence. If you find yourself walking down a dark street and there are some shady characters standing off to the side, watching you, it’s nice to see a police car, patrolling the area. We need to see things. If I lived in Iraq, I probably wouldn’t have voted unless I could see with my own eyes all the security that was being put into place. Seeing is believing.
And that’s why sometimes, it’s hard to be a Christian. God wants you to be a confident Christian. But he never lets you see him. Have you ever noticed that about God? Our God is a God who likes to hide himself, who likes to remain invisible. “I will take care of you,” God says. But as you drive down the road, as you go to work, as you spend time at home, or as you go about your day, you never, ever see God. “I’m in control of the world,” God says. But then you see things on the news – natural disasters, or crimes taking place, and you ask yourself sometimes, “Where is God?”
God describes himself in the Bible as a powerful and wise and loving and glorious God. But here on earth, you can’t see those things. And when you’re struggling with a problem, you might find yourself looking up to heaven and saying, “God, I wish just for once, you’d let me see you. Let me see that you are here. Let me see your glory. Let me see your power and your mercy. I want to see that you are really here.” When you say those things or think those things, do you realize that God is standing an inch away from your face, looking you right in the eye? You might not be able to see him, but God is here, right here, with all of his power and wisdom and grace and glory. He’s right here. But God is not going to turn the lights on so that you can see him. Instead – if you want to connect to the invisible God, you’re going to have to do it a different way.
Just think of all the invisible things that are out there, all around you and you can’t see them. As we sit here in church, there are radio waves all around you, even though you can’t hear the music or the talking. There are television signals in this room, and satellite signals, but you can’t see the pictures they are producing. The air is filled with cell phone signals, but you can’t hear anything. As you sit here with all five of your senses, you can’t perceive anything. It’s all here. The only way you can, is by connecting yourself to one of those signals with a special device – a phone, a radio, a television, a computer.
And as we sit here with our five senses, we can’t perceive God’s presence. His glory is here. His wisdom and power are here. But we can’t perceive those things. And yet, there is a way that you can connect yourself to the invisible God. And that is here, through the Word. This is how you can connect to God, and to all of his glory. And once you make this connection, and keep that connection going, you become more and more of a confident Christian. You become someone who doesn’t need to see God, because you have faith that he’s here.
The Apostle Peter speaks to us this morning from one of his letters, and encourages us to pay close attention to this special book we call the Bible. Instead of God walking next to you in a visible way, God stays invisible, but walks next to you here, in his Word. Instead of God speaking to you face to face, God remains invisible. But he speaks to you here, through his Word. Here is where God comforts you, encourages you, and gives you confidence to face all the ups and downs that life can bring you. This is where you can get connected to the invisible God.