Monday, November 24, 2014

Comforting Words (part 3): The God of All Comfort

Paul writes, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort”.  (2 Corinthians 1:3) Here we find reasons why God is praised as well as some truths about the God of all comfort.

God is praised because He is God of our Lord Jesus Christ. Yes, Jesus has a God. After the resurrection, “Jesus said to her, ‘Do not cling to Me, for I have not yet ascended to My Father; but go to My brethren and say to them, “I am ascending to My Father and your Father, and to My God and your God.”’”[Jn 20:17] When Jesus died, the disciples needed comfort. Jesus comforts Mary with the truth that God has not forgotten anyone. He sends her back to the disciples with a message concerning His ascension: The same God who raised Jesus from the dead is our God by reconciliation which is rooted by faith in His death, burial and resurrection.

Who is the God of Jesus? Notice that I did not ask, “who is God to you?” Who God is and our idea of God may not be the same. Our God must be the God of our Lord Jesus Christ.

This may be one reason we have difficulties--we may have the wrong view of God. When trials come, we say things like, “where is God?” or “He has forgotten me” or “my problems are too much.” The reality is that God is everywhere, He knows all and He is all-powerful. We say things in ignorance then wonder about our trouble.

I had lunch with a missionary who described a conversation he had with bed-ridden Imam in Kosovo. The conversation required two translators, but the gist of the conversation was like this: the Imam told the missionary, “ask me any religious question.” The missionary asked, “how is man made clean of sin?” One of the translators had never heard the gospel and later told the missionary “this is hard teaching.”

The point is this: if my God is the same God as Jesus’ God, then the pressure is off me to figure Him out, to define or defend “my idea of god.”

So here are some questions to ask about God:

Does He exist?
Has He revealed Himself and how?
What Does He call Himself?
Can Jesus say your God is His?

Next time we will examine the question, “If Jesus has a God, then how can Jesus be God?”

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