Wednesday, January 21, 2009
The True and Living God
“I, even I, am the LORD, and apart from me there is no savior. I have revealed and saved and proclaimed I, and not some foreign god among you. You are my witnesses," declares the LORD, "that I am God” (Isaiah 43:11-12). I remember as a freshman in Bible College reading an article, written by an ungodly individual, that was critical of the Christian faith. He said the Christian faith is "Nothing more than a psychological crutch." My response was how dare he attack my God and my faith. Then it dawned on me, he had not experienced the power and grace of God that comes through the new birth. The above verse does bring to mind the question, Is belief in God something for the weak, a childish gullibility, a way of side stepping reality? From [Freud’s] perspective, God is merely a creation of the human mind, a projection emanating from human need and desire rather than a distinct reality or being that exists independently of the human mind. Freud’s notion of God acting as an idealized father figure for humans, providing a cushion from the harshness of the real world and a comforting friend in the midst of life’s troubles, reduces God to a human construct. Indeed, for Freud, God is made in humanity’s own image and is the “ultimate wish-fulfillment”; God does not actually exist but is merely the creation of humanity’s imagination and desire for a loving father figure. Can we as believers respond to this? Is God really able to be explained away so easily by one aspect of psychology? The answer is a resounding no. As the song writer stated "He lives, He lives, I know my Savior lives, for He lives within my heart." Our verses for today reminds us we are here as witnesses to "Declare the praises of him who has called us out of darkness into his marvelous light" (I Peter 2). Unlike the blind unbeliever we are recipients of God's blessings. We are the people who anticipate His mighty deliverance yet to come. How dare we remain silent? There is no place for discouragement or retreat in our lives. To be discouraged is to lack courage. No believer has the luxury of discouragement, for we are in a battle for truth. Jesus Christ is our Commander and Chief, and He won the battle for us back at Calvary. Thus we fight from victory, rather than for victory. The same God who made the corpse of Jesus our living Lord is the same God Who is mighty to save. Being a witness of the living God, ought to humble us. Jacob was humbled when God touched his thigh, he was renamed Israel and walked with a limp the rest of his life. We ought to beware of any Christian leader who does not walk with a limp. Sometimes God orders circumstances into our lives to develop humility and create greater dependence upon Him. It is because God works greater through weakness than strength. The truth is we can get humility voluntarily or involuntarily. Its much easier if we get it voluntarily. "God gives more grace to the humble" one way or the other we'll get it. For God commissions humble, trusting, witnesses to do His Kingdom work. Dr. Ken Copley is available for counseling, conferences, and local church meetings.