March 20, 2022

Is Your God Real? | Episode 224

Is Your God Real?  | Episode 224

Psalm 25:14 says, “The LORD confides in those who fear him; he makes his covenant known to them.” Is the God you believe in real to you? How do you reconcile that relationship?   How can we have a deeper friendship with God? How can we grow...


Psalm 25:14 says, “The LORD confides in those who fear him; he makes his covenant known to them.”

Is the God you believe in real to you?

How do you reconcile that relationship?

 

How can we have a deeper friendship with God? How can we grow in intimacy with him, so that he reveals himself in such a way that we can more effectively worship him and serve others?

I was down in the dumps, you know that is where I hang out now since my wife had her surgery, the dumps.  And I was drinking my morning coffee trying to get the caffeine to perk me up a little.  I was readying a text a long test from a musician and guitar builder.  He went all in and told me in the longest text message of 2022 this: 

 

I am an atheist and don’t understand faith in a higher power but know there will never be comfort in atheism. 

I will tell you for the last year or two, I have been getting signals from somewhere on a daily basis. I am thoroughly convinced there is something more. I personally think both the the concept of a god as well as the concept of evolution are completely and equally absurd. No way evolution is naturally occurring and no way there is a god controlling everything. It’s also absurd there are only 2 possibilities ever discussed. 

I have this conversation regularly with a friend who is a Greek Orthodox, born again Christian and an Injury Lawyer. He is finally agreeing with me. It’s clear to me the Bible is man made. There is zero evidence of a higher being. All the stories contain only things that were known to man at that time. Any conversation with a higher being would have contained content not known to man “at that time.” When you talk to a scientist, they don’t tell you things you know. They tell you things they see under a microscope. Things you clearly do not know from your vantage point. A higher being who created all we know and all we don’t know would have revealed something! Things under the ocean, animals not indigenous to that area, the single celled animal…something in outer space, other planets or galaxies. There would have been a clue or some clear evidence of something people could not have known. 

Their are 100 billion stars in our galaxy. Stars are suns, suns have planets. What is occurring here on earth would have to be occurring a zillion times on other planets. A hundred billion stars. Do you realize how many that is?

If you could count one integer per second, it would take about 35 years to count to a billion. So figure 3500 years of seconds. Each one of those “seconds” represents  a star in our galaxy.  Each planet, like ours can have 6 billon people. A hundred billion planets times 6 billion people, a calculator doesn’t calculate that high. And, there are other galaxies!

Tell me how a higher being can have any control over a single person. Nobody does the math. You won’t hear that in a church. 

 

It’s right up there with Santa Claus can fill up a sleigh with toys for ever kid living on the planet, travel around the world, hit every home in a single night…all powered by reindeer that can fly. And, can eat a cookie at every stop!

And I only know one thing for sure. We will never know…and we have to be satisfied with that. Just take things as they come. Fight the fights you can win and surrender to the ones you can’t. 

That’s my 2 cents of unsolicited therapy. Sorry if it goes against everything you believe. Hope you don’t find it offensive. 

Happy to hear you are doing better. Let’s talk soon if I didn’t offend you with my view of life. 

 

I sipped my coffee, re-read his post and thought about it all for a minute.  You ever wonder about all of this stuff?  You ever wonder if it is a load of crap? 

I took a sip of coffee and texted him back.  Hey man, good morning.  I received your text.  God has been my friend since I was a kid.  We are close. 

He wrote back, I am happy for you. 

 

 

I have never seen God, but I know Him.  I have heard His voice.  I have seen where He has been.  I’ve seen His Work.  I’ve read His Word.  I talk to Him often.  He has saved my life physically several times. I love Him.  And scared of HIM. But like you and I – we have never met.

Do you have friends you have never seen?  What do you consider me? Aren’t we friends?  How would you get to know me better? 

FaceTime, video chat, call, write, visit in person.

  It is not that God didn’t have many friends in Scripture, he did. But there were some he was closer with. Abraham was one of them. In fact, one of the greatest forms of intimacy is going to somebody’s home. God visits Abraham’s home in physical form and shares intimate secrets about Sodom, that even the Sodomites and Lot, who lived there, were unaware of. God had a deep friendship with Abraham, which afforded him many great privileges.

The LORD appeared to Abraham near the great trees of Mamre while he was sitting at the entrance to his tent in the heat of the day. Abraham looked up and saw three men standing nearby. When he saw them, he hurried from the entrance of his tent to meet them and bowed low to the ground. He said, “If I have found favor in your eyes, my lord, do not pass your servant by. Let a little water be brought, and then you may all wash your feet and rest under this tree. Let me get you something to eat, so you can be refreshed and then go on your way—now that you have come to your servant.” “Very well,” they answered, “do as you say.” So Abraham hurried into the tent to Sarah. “Quick,” he said, “get three seahs of fine flour and knead it and bake some bread.” Then he ran to the herd and selected a choice, tender calf and gave it to a servant, who hurried to prepare it. He then brought some curds and milk and the calf that had been prepared, and set these before them. While they ate, he stood near them under a tree. “Where is your wife Sarah?” they asked him. “There, in the tent,” he said. Then the LORD said, “I will surely return to you about this time next year, and Sarah your wife will have a son.” Now Sarah was listening at the entrance to the tent, which was behind him. Abraham and Sarah were already old and well advanced in years, and Sarah was past the age of childbearing. So Sarah laughed to herself as she thought, “After I am worn out and my master is old, will I now have this pleasure?” Then the LORD said to Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh and say, ‘Will I really have a child, now that I am old?’ Is anything too hard for the LORD? I will return to you at the appointed time next year and Sarah will have a son.” Sarah was afraid, so she lied and said, “I did not laugh.” But he said, “Yes, you did laugh.” When the men got up to leave, they looked down toward Sodom, and Abraham walked along with them to see them on their way. Then the LORD said, “Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do? Abraham will surely become a great and powerful nation, and all nations on earth will be blessed through him. For I have chosen him… (Genesis 18)

 

What are characteristics of God’s friends? How can we grow in intimacy with our Lord?

 

In this text, God miraculously shows up at Abraham’s home in the form of a man, with two other men who were angels. Abraham prepares a feast for them, and God reaffirms his covenant with Abraham. He tells him that within a year’s time, Sarah would birth a child. When the three visitors are about to leave, God decides to share with Abraham his plan to visit Sodom and Gomorrah, confirm their sins, and then destroy the land. Then we see Abraham intercede for Sodom and Gomorrah and move God’s heart.

 

Can one have friends without first showing himself friendly (Prov 18:24, KJV)? James even declared, “Draw near God and he will draw near you” (James 4:8).

It seems clear that Abraham knows these visitors are special and that one of them is God. In fact, he calls one of them “my lord” in verse 3. One of the three was clearly prominent, as he was God incarnate. To further support this, Abraham said to him, “If I have found favor in your eyes, my lord, do not pass your servant by” (v. 3). The implication is that Abraham had a previous relationship with the prominent one; otherwise the comment wouldn’t make sense. He had just met these gentlemen. It seems like a fair conclusion that Abraham knew the man was God with two angelic guests.

 

Worship is a natural response for those who know God intimately. Worship comes from the fact that one recognizes how “worthy” an object or person is. Abraham had known God for over twenty years; he knew God’s beauty and his characteristics. Abraham, therefore, bowed in worship to the Lord and reverence towards the two angels.

 

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