Understanding God (Part 1)

It is not a very nice thing to say, but just between you and me, does it seem that God is two-faced? A bundle of contradictions? When the subject of God’s identity comes up, conflicting traits are attributed to Him with straight faces, nods of consent, and few questions. But the issue remains: Is God merciful or is He just? Loving or wrathful? Forgiving or vengeful? Holy or understanding? Is He jealous or is He longsuffering?

Depending on whose opinion you consider, God exhibits somewhere between two and 300 characteristics. Regardless of the number, each is absolute and raises the question: Can God really be all of these without contradiction?

The answer is, yes! It has to be. God must be all that He claims without contradiction.

We tolerate inconsistencies in each other with little notice until some high ideal is compromised. But when it comes to God, we need and expect Him to be true to Himself. Exactly. True. To Himself!

But while we must hold a clear conviction that God is exactly who He says He is, and believe with all our hearts that He is true to each trait characterizing Him, this does not mean we fully understand Him. This is a critical point. Knowing God to be who He says He is and understanding Him are two different matters.

So, how do we keep these two views of God distinct? Mixing them is obviously a bad plan. This is my next-time blog.