Saturday, October 23, 2021

Knowing God




Bobservations Column
Pastor Bob Lawrenz

In today’s reading we learn that Abraham is a friend of God, forever. What an incredible honor! But it’s not just there that we read of this friendship, we find it again in Isaiah 41:8, and yet again in James 2:23. Mentioned twice in the Scrolls of the Old Testament, it is no wonder that the Jews held Abraham in such high esteem as their ancestral father. But mentioning it a third time in James, it’s clear that God Himself wants the Church to also know that we too can be friends with God, by putting faith in Him, as did Abraham.

Friends meet at some point. They find interests that they hold in common; they speak of the same things; they invest time in the relationship. They get to know each other well.

With Abraham though, he was introduced to the Most High God while he was still known as Abram. It was God who gave him the new name, “Abraham”(Genesis 17:5 & Revelation 2:17).

It’s a given that God knew Abraham inside and out, but Abraham learned of God more and more over time. He met the High Priest of God (Melchizedek) and knew immediately to tithe to the Holy Priest. Melchizedek was the King of Salem (Peace). He appears out of nowhere, and then disappears into history; he is a timeless figure, without a beginning and without an end. His presence in the scriptures mimics that of God, whom he serves, who also has no beginning, and He has no end; God is eternal, and so also is His plan for us.

It is in Isaiah 9:6 that we read the prophetic verse referring to God’s Son, the Prince of Peace. Proverbs 30:4 poses the question to every reader if we know the Son’s name. The Bible also tells us that God has known us from before the foundation of the earth, and through the Bible, we can know Him. 
By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son. ~ Hebrews 11:17

Today's Audio Message:

Matthew 22:23-46 - Knowing God!


God is the God of the living, not the dead.  Jesus had claimed to be "the resurrection and the life". All the Sadducees needed to discredit Jesus was then to show the absurdity of the concept of resurrection. The stakes are high. But Jesus showed that the resurrection was not a new idea, but has already been spoken of by God in Exodus. Jesus also spoke about the great power involved, saying that in the resurrection, people will live and love in an entirely new level that exceeds that of marriages here on earth. Find out from this sermon then how the resurrection is of utmost importance to you and how it impacts your life today!

Finally, a legal expert from among the Pharisees asks Jesus one last question in order to test him, “Which commandment in the law is greatest?” (22:36). For him to answer wisely will be a confirmation of his teaching authority. It seems that after a long day of verbal battle, even the Pharisees begin to lose steam and wonder whether their efforts had been worthwhile.

Jesus’ answer is classic. Loving God is the first thing, the most important thing. But, with it comes a corollary: to love God means that you also love God’s people. 

Biblical love is not passive and it is not strictly emotional. In the Old Testament, there are references to many kinds of love, but the love referred to here by Jesus is the love of Deuteronomy 6:5, the love of God. This love is far from passive. It is the active response of the faithful believer to the love of God.

To love God with all one’s heart, and soul, and mind, is to choose to respond to God even as God chooses to love us. 















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