There seems to be a tendency in our culture to form God in our own image. Swarthmore College, founded by the Quakers, is now offering a class on “queering God”. A topless activist recently grabbed the Jesus statue from the Vatican’s nativity scene and yelled, “God is woman”. Within the Christian church itself, we can often find pastors and leaders teaching that God is not interested in the moral issues that we are and instead God is about love and doesn’t draw lines or separate people. Of course, our definition of how this love is defined becomes so encompassing of all meaning that it really means nothing.
Yet this is not the real God, and this is not the God of scripture. The God of scripture is most certainly a God of love, who cares for his creation and all people upon the earth. But this love, like all love, is not bounded and defined by us, but by God. And this love of God is also Holy, pure, undefiled, commits no wrong, enjoys no wrong, has no false motivations. Our love on the other hand is shallow, defiled, caring only for our own interest, enjoying our own wrongs, and lost in darkness.
In the 1600’s Stephen Charnock said, “It is less injury to Him to deny His being, than to deny the purity of it; the one makes Him no God, the other a deformed, unlovely, and a detestable God … he that saith God is not holy speaks much worse than he that saith there is no God at all.”
God is not made in our image, but we are made in His. This image that we bear is what we defile, its what we break, its what we tarnish with our own sense of right and wrong. Defining God by our darkness is worse than saying there is no God at all. Praise God that His love knew the cost to save us, to clean us, to make us Holy as He is Holy. The pure, undefiled love of God is Jesus Christ who was willing to sacrifice Himself on behalf of our darkness, and our fallenness. May God grant us wisdom that through Jesus Christ, God may not become more like us, but that we may become more like Him.
Have you ever tried to justify yourself by making God more like you?
What does God’s Holiness mean for your life?