Summary: If we have seen Jesus we have seen the Father. Jesus said we can know what God is like by watching Him.
What is God Like
Daniel J. Little / The Landmark Church
Scripture Reading - Psalms 103:1-14
1 Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and all that is within me,
bless his holy name!
2 Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits,
3 who forgives all your iniquity,
who heals all your diseases,
4 who redeems your life from the pit,
who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,
5 who satisfies you with good
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's.
6 The Lord works righteousness
and justice for all who are oppressed.
7 He made known his ways to Moses,
his acts to the people of Israel.
8 The Lord is merciful and gracious,
slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
9 He will not always chide,
nor will he keep his anger forever.
10 He does not deal with us according to our sins,
nor repay us according to our iniquities.
11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;
12 as far as the east is from the west,
so far does he remove our transgressions from us.
13 As a father shows compassion to his children,
so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear him.
14 For he knows our frame;
he remembers that we are dust.
If there is a Creator-God what is He like?
We gather from some of the things we are coming to know about the universe we live in (astrophysics, quantum-mechanics, molecular biology and such) that God is operates in a realm of infinite genius and understanding as designer and builder.
But what is He like as a person? How does He feel about us? You can be real smart still be real mean.
• Is He an accountant-type with a spread sheet tracking and recording your every move?
• Is he fussy to the degree that you can never please Him. Try as hard as you like and long as you like, but His only comment is “You could have and should have done better.”?
I want to mention two very important truth claims made by Jesus.
1. He said that He and God were the same person.
2. He said if any one wants to know what God the person is like all they have to do is watch Me with people and you will know because if you have seen Me you have seen God.
One noticeable thing about Jesus was that He didn’t always move in line with accepted religious convention. To tell the truth He was a bit of an iconoclast.
1. He didn’t enjoy being around religious posers. On certain occasions He called them hypocrites saying things like “You are like a container that is clean on the outside but smeared with filth on the inside. All you are about is looking good.
2. On the other hand, He did spend a lot of time with sinners of various kinds. For example when the religious people were ready to stone a woman who had been caught in adultery Jesus gratuitously forgave her, saved her life and told her to stop living that way.
Simon (a very religious and righteous man) was honoring Jesus with a luncheon with himself and some important friends. This was a "kosher" house.
A woman characterized in her city by the title "sinner" knew she would do nothing but defile this house by coming to it. But she came anyway and she turned out to be the one person who most honored the Lord by looing to Him for help.
Again and again we find him breaking with religious convention in order to love those whose credential didn't exactly recommend them to the compnay of holy people.
When you see Jesus in action, when you see Him eating and drinking with marginalized people, tax collectors (publicans) and sinners, protitutes, when you see Him freely forgiving a woman caught in the act adultery and ssaving her life, when you see Him touching lepers, enjoying the company of the very poor, please remember His claim: “I and my Father are One, if you have seen Me you have seen God.”
So it’s true,
1 John 4:16 So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love , and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. ESV
Jesus came for the broken and bruised and needy people. Read the New Testament and you will find that these are the very people that Jesus was often with.
So looking at Jesus we see that God’s love is never reserved for some future date when we are better people. Nor is His love a thing of the past before we started living “like this.”