Yesterday, I began Week 2 of my first seminary class which is an overview of Old Testament history, literature, and theology. I’m amazed how much my understanding of the Old Testament has changed in just over a week, and how much more I love God’s Word and the God who spoke and wrote it for His glory and for our benefit so that we can know Him.
These first two weeks my study is primarily in the Pentateuch. One thing that just can’t be missed in the Old Testament is God’s grace and love. Perhaps on a surface reading, we see law, Law, LAW. Of course, God’s Law is there, but His Law rests upon a foundation of His grace, mercy, and love. It is only our sinful human nature that wants to view God as a merciless, law-giving, judge who delights in seeing us fall into sin and to face the horrific consequences.
On the contrary, God who is rich in mercy and whose love knows no bounds, gave us the Law to point us away from our sinful nature and toward His holiness. He gave us the Law to prove to us that we can’t know Him and reach Him on our own and from our own good (or bad) intentions.
On our own, we would know Him only as a strict judge who would judge our sin mercilessly. How could He do otherwise for those who reject the loving, gracious gift of His Son who on our behalf took the full merciless wrath of God on Himself?
We can only know Him on His terms, for who He is, and as He is. And who He is, is a God of mercy, grace, and love.
I’ve been reading through the Pentateuch and the inescapable truth is there:
God is good.
GOD IS GOOD!
It rained early this morning, and so I opened my bedroom window to look into our little garden. The air was cool and moist. The lime tree was beaded with rain drops. I added a verse from the book of the Law to one of those pictures for our mutual reflection, encouragement, and for a reminder of God’s goodness…