A lot of people want to understand things in the perspective of God. Why did He do this? Why did He do that? Why do we experience this in this world? Why does God allow this? And the list goes on and on… Just how do you understand the mind of God?
I’ve been reading 1 Chronicles as I go through my sixth time around finishing the Bible. It’s mind-boggling how the Bible changes in personal reflection as life goes by. It has never had the same meaning to me as I’ve read it five times before. And this time around, there was a certain verse that stood out to me as I reflected and meditated on it’s meaning. This is what the verse says:
“Satan rose up against Israel and incited David to take a census of Israel.” – 1 Chronicles 21:1
In an earlier version (in 2 Samuel) it says:
“Again the anger of the LORD burned against Israel, and he incited David against them, saying, “Go and take a census of Israel and Judah.” – 2 Samuel 24:1
Now, first thing that caught my attention was in Chronicles, it was said that Satan was responsible for this sin of disobedience. God clearly stated in the Law of Moses that taking a census is a sin.
Second thing that caught my attention was that God made David choose one of three consequences
“So Gad went to David and said to him, “This is what the LORD says: ‘Take your choice: three years of famine, three months of being swept away before your enemies, with their swords overtaking you, or three days of the sword of the LORD–days of plague in the land, with the angel of the LORD ravaging every part of Israel.’ Now then, decide how I should answer the one who sent me.” – 1 Chronicles 21: 11-12
If God knows everything, He knows what David would have chosen. So why let him choose? Is God bound by a higher law that He should give us choices? Shouldn’t He just execute what David would have chosen anyway?
The book “The Love of God” tries to explain God’s love in a 225 page book. Halfway through while I was reading it, I couldn’t handle the deep theological explanation and apologetics as I should. I wanted to debate with the book (yes, you heard me right)
The book explains God’s love in perhaps the best possible way that a human being can. Not just any human being – a human being who is a follower of Christ. But still it does not justify the love of God – no, not for me. John MacArthur argues about common grace, about unsaving love and about the chosen elect.
While I do not completely disagree with his writings and logic, I am very much displeased with the idea of putting and explaining the love of God in a book the way a human being can perceive it. For some strange reason, I personally find some of his arguments disturbing and lacking something – something I cannot explain.
The love of God can never be explained – not in a book and not by a human mind. No matter how much you’ve experienced the love of God, you just cannot explain it – especially not theologically nor apologetically.
To understand the love of God, you have to know God and have Him in your life. It is unexplainable except by the Holy Spirit alone. Once you accept Him into your life, it is immediately unveilled in you – no, you don’t know it intellectually (and perhaps you never will), but your spirit has understood it completely right there and then.
I’m still reading the book and will read it to completion because I am curious and would like to hear more about such arguments to help me know more about God and how people think and argue about His love in our world today. Anyway I lack reading theological books – I usually read topical ones. Don’t get me wrong, “The Love of God” by John MacArthur is a really good read – a very deep and theological one, but a good read nontheless.
If the love of God can never be understood, how much more the mind of God? The Bible has revealed a lot more about God’s love than His mind.
What has been revealed to you – treasure it for it is yours. But the ones which are kept from us, it is not meant for us and perhaps that is for a good reason and purpose. For if God would reveal everything to us, it may supersede the capacity of our will and intellect – so much so that it may destroy us right there and then.
Always remember that our maker and Father will always want what is best for us. If you truly believe so, understanding His heart and mind will become a delight and a relationship – not a study.
Trying to understand the mind of God is like trying to hold the sun in your hands. You simply just can’t.