Monday, July 23, 2012

The Trinity of Love - God the Father

Spirit & Truth # 281
“The Trinity of Love – God the Father”

By Greg Smith


            For the next three weeks, I want to go back to the basics, and talk about your relationship with God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.  The Trinity is a divine mystery that can make your head swim—if you look at God philosophically.  But God wants us to know Him relationally—and that’s something quite different.  The Sunday School Chronicle tells the following story about a father’s relationship with his child: 

In one of Dr. J. Wilbur Chapman's meetings a man rose to give the following remarkable testimony: "I got off at the Pennsylvania depot one day as a tramp, and for a year I begged on the streets for a living. One day I touched a man on the shoulder and said, `Mister, please give me a dime.' As soon as I saw his face, I recognized my old father. `Father, don't you know me?' I asked. Throwing his arms around me, he cried, `I have found you, I have found you, I have found you; all I have is yours.' Men, think of it, that I, a tramp, stood begging my father for ten cents, when for eighteen years he had been looking for me, to give me all he was worth."

            God the Father is constantly seeking out His children, eager to restore broken relationships and lost love.  The idea of God as heavenly Father challenges many people who have had a difficult relationship with an earthly father.  When they think of Father, they think of abuse, neglect, or abandonment.  Feelings of guilt, shame, and betrayal may come to mind.  But God the Father is altogether different. 
            Ephesians 3:14-15 (NIV) says, “For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom his whole family in heaven and on earth derives its name.”  Catt, Kendrick, and Kendrick, authors of the Honor Begins at Home Bible study, write:  “In verses 14-15, Paul reveals God as the perfect Father.  We don’t call God Father because He is like us earthly fathers; rather, we are called fathers because we need to be like Him!  While your earthly father may disappoint you at times, your Heavenly Father is the perfect example you need (Pg. 19).”[i]
            God the Father loves you more than any earthly father ever could.  He completes whatever is missing in your own earthly father, giving you a love that goes beyond human frailties.  Romans 8:14-15 (NIV) tells us what it means to be a child of God—someone who is led by the Spirit.  “Those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship.  And by him we cry, ‘Abba, Father.’”
            You can go to seminary and try to grasp the concept of the Trinity—or you can reach out and take the Father’s hand, walk in fellowship with Jesus, God’s Son, and live in the power of the Holy Spirit.  I hope that, for you, God is more than a concept—that when you think of God, you think of the greatest love you’ve ever known.  Join me in this three-week journey into God—and rejoice with me as you discover the Trinity of Love.

[i] Michael Catt, Stephen Kendrick, and Alex Kendrick.  Honor Begins at Home: The Courageous Bible Study.  Lifeway Press: Nashville, TN.  2011.

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