Our Determined God
Whatever else may be said about God’s intention in creation, this much is crystal clear. It was love that moved Him to begin all this (see Psalm 136). And from the beginning, He planned and wanted to live in loving fellowship with humans, those He created in His own image complete with a free will. In Eden the voice of the Lord God walked with the humans in the cool of the day. What would God have been saying to them? Did He speak to them of His love for them? Did He offer them guidance for daily living? Did He warn them against choosing evil? They chose evil nevertheless. But God, though He had to expel them from the Garden, did not give up on them. He foretold how One would come in the future to deal with the devastation introduced and propagated by the Serpent Devil. Because of the truth of that prophecy, God kept fellowship with humans. But Cain’s rebellion, the corruption that preceded the flood and the tower of Babel revealed the depths to which humans were willing to sink for their sin. God, however was determined not to give up on them. So He called Abraham out of sinful idolatry and began to build a people through Him. Centuries later he brings Abraham’s descendants out of Egyptian slavery and makes a covenant with them. He has them build a tabernacle. This tabernacle would be the visible evidence of God dwelling in the midst of these people. The God, which the heavens themselves could not contain, came to live in a tent on behalf of His people. Because of Him they were led, fed, watered, protected, taught the truth and made a holy nation who belonged to God. Through the years of the kingdom of Israel the people tested God, served idols, and corrupted themselves while God kept calling them back. But after Malachi’s prophecy there is no further word from God for nearly four and a half centuries. Then, our determined God, brought His only begotten Son to planet earth. Here is how John puts it, “And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us (and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father), full of grace and truth” (1:14). The word “dwelt” in this verse means “tabernacled.” God never gave up His intention to live in loving fellowship with humans. But Jesus came to His own and they refused Him. Today, the church is His temple…the tabernacle…in which God is determined to dwell with humans (1 Cor. 3:16). I am grateful God is so determined. Let us not refuse Him!