Our Image of God; April 2, 2022

Psalm 147:10-11 His pleasure is not in the strength of the horse,
nor his delight in the legs of a man;
the Lord delights in those who fear him,
who put their hope in his unfailing love.

The Japanese makes a lot more sense than the English here. Rather than saying “the legs of a man,” it says “a foot soldier.” Horses were largely seen as instruments of war, so the connection is obvious. In any case, the point is that God is concerned with people’s hearts, rather than what we would consider instruments of power. After all, God is omnipotent! Why would He be obsessed with any material thing? It’s interesting how easily we forget that. We imagine Him to be like us, instead of remembering that in His grace He made us a little bit like Him. It would be impossible to overstate the importance of how we see God. None of us sees Him perfectly or even very clearly, as Paul pointed out in 1 Corinthians 13:12. They only had polished metal mirrors back then, without the industrial systems we have today, so a reflection was distorted by definition. That’s a major reason God sent His Son, so that we would get a clearer picture. As Jesus said, “Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father.” (John 14:9) We need to look at Jesus to know the Father. A major issue is that all of us are greatly influenced by our biological fathers. If they loved and feared God, we have a far better chance of having at least a Biblical image of God, but sadly, that isn’t so common. We need to ask God to correct our image of Him so that we will relate to Him more accurately.

I was blessed to be raised by an exemplary father, but each of my siblings responded to him differently. We can never get away from personal responsibility. I am currently something of a father figure to a number of people, both in the church and in my secular teaching. I needed to be careful to present as accurate an image as possible of my heavenly Father so that they may seek Him accurately, and not from some strange tangent. I am sometimes a substitute for a physical father, but I must never think I am in the place of God, even though He does use me as His representative. (2 Corinthians 5:20)

Father, thank You for this reminder. The new school term starts next week, and I want to be your agent indeed to them. Help me remember all You have taught me about Yourself and express it accurately in word and deed, drawing many to repentance and faith for their salvation, for Your glory. Thank You. Hallelujah!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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1 Response to Our Image of God; April 2, 2022

  1. Liam OD says:

    Thanks for this reminder, Jack. Earlier today, in a conversation with someone, I was reminded of my own father and what a good example he was to me. Imperfect human being, but a wonderful father, who certainly did point the way to the Father for me, both in his devotion to God and the way he interacted with me and others.
    Because of the customs of my ecclesial community (RCC) the irony is that although I have no children, many call me “Father.” Thanks, Jack, for reminding me of the responsibility that comes with that.

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