Misunderstanding God can have critical repercussions. Ideas like God won’t send anyone to Hell because He loves everyone, God accepts alternate lifestyles, and so on. Should a loving God accept any and all sin because He loves you?
A typical complaint goes like this:
For example, how can we reconcile the loving person of Christ with the violent God of the Old Testament? How can God forgive the sins of the world yet kill a man for simply trying to stabilize the Ark of the Covenant (2 Sam. 6)? How can an unchanging God preach to us about loving our enemies yet facilitate the destruction of entire people groups — including children (Deut. 7:1–2; 20: 16–18)?
Three ideas exist in that thought, and they’re all wrong.
- The Split-Personality God
It’s really simple — the God of the Old Testament and God of the New Testament are the same God. It’s not a mean, vengeful Old Testament God, contrasted with a loving, peaceful New Testament one. God does not change.
Does the author believe God is split-personality?
God is a god of love, but that does not mean winking at sin. Some say the Old Testament shows the problem (sin), while the New Testament shows the solution (Christ). It’s the same God in both.
Once again, Relativity provides the solution. It’s the same God, viewed from two different perspectives.
Would the Jews say their God is a god of violence? Probably not. It’s Christians who fail to understand justice, as many “Christians” ignore real justice in pushing the false gospel of social justice, and failing to understand being a God of love (yet just) means sin can’t be ignored.
In a rush to feel-good ideas about God, responsibility takes a back seat.
- Why A Feel-Good God Isn’t Really God
As already noted, a God of love, mercy, and justice, must have penalties for sin.
If we are to have a just society, when someone commits murder we don’t just ignore it — sure, go on your way, after all, we loooooove you and we’re glad you found an alternative style which works for you.
No, justice requires the penalty be paid. Just as society must have penalties for breaking the law, so must a just God have penalties for breaking the LAW.
Forgiveness is not ignoring sin. Transgression still requires a penalty be paid, it’s just you don’t have to pay it.
- Love Isn’t What You Think
This is the same misunderstanding of the Old Testament versus the New.
The God of the Old Testament is still a God of love, while the God of the New Testament is still just, requiring judgment for sin.
Love isn’t what’s seen on TV, specifically, love is a commitment, not an emotion.
Times will exist when you don’t feel warm and fuzzy about your spouse. But does that commitment change? Hopefully not. Love means nothing they do or say can destroy that commitment.
Sure, it may not make you feel happy towards them, but the commitment remains.
Agapao is a verb, not a noun. It means commitment, not feelings.
God remains committed to you, but don’t mistake His commitment for approval of sin. Love doesn’t mean approving everything — gee, I’m glad you found heroin and that makes you happy.
Hopefully, you wouldn’t approve of a friend’s heroin use, so why should God?
Warning: Water Doesn’t Exist
What happens with the Bible and God does not happen in other fields — someone says something like I don’t understand how God [insert problem here], therefore it must not be true.
Nobody does that in any other subject. Nobody.
- I don’t understand how Oxygen and Hydrogen combine to form H20, therefore water must not exist.
- I don’t understand how spin ½ particles obey Fermi-Dirac statistics, thus it must not be true.
- I don’t understand Relativity, so it must not be true.
Those are obviously absurd, yet with the Bible, people say they don’t understand how God does xyz, therefore it must not be true, or it’s a mistake in the Bible (Note: the spin ½ came from “The Feynman Lectures on Physics Volume I” , Feynman, Leighton, Sands page xii).
Tool Time Tip: He’s God, we’re not.
It’s quite a leap of hubris to say we (as finite beings) should understand everything God does.
The Great Education Hoax
We’ve turned out a generation from government schools who can’t think clearly, don’t understand logic, can barely read, and get their ideas from reality TV.
It’s no wonder failure to understand the Bible (and the bizarre theologies which follow) have infested the church. Failure to think clearly leads to erroneous conclusions about God.
Modern heresies have their seeds in ideas which fail to follow logic and proper analysis (or even consistency). To spot how absurd these ideas really are becomes trivial with a basic background in logic. If you haven’t done much study in logic, a good place to begin is Jason Lisle’s “Discerning Truth” (ISBN 978-0890515945).
Sadly, thinking skills don’t seem to be taught much anymore, as the trend moves toward fully buzzword-compliant terms, and away from education.
- No child left behind
- Race to the top
- Goals 2000
Yet we know what kind of education works, as Project Follow Through began in 1967 concluded in 1995.
Cathy Watkins of Cal State Stanislaus says:
Why have the results of the Follow Through evaluation failed to impact the policies and practices of the educational community? Why have the most effective approaches for educating children not been widely disseminated? Why has the knowledge gained from the Follow Through evaluation not been used to reform education in America?
All good questions.
If I was a cynical person I’d say when intelligent people know what works in education, yet fail to follow it, their goals must not be education.
Should you homeschool your kids? That’s a decision each family must decide for themselves, but if you don’t at least consider and investigate it, you’re not considering all good options for your children.
No matter what education your child receives, be sure they obtain instruction in logic and analysis — ideas sorely lacking in people getting their ideas from TV.
But only if you want them to be free from heretical influences, remain combat-ready, think for themselves, and stay in the game.
… Because it’s 2:59AM.