A Father’s Day Message by Bev Herring
One of my favorite preachers was talking about his father on a CD lately … that he was a good man … perhaps not a perfect man but very good to him.
He made the statement that if someone were to blame him for things he hadn’t done … he’d jump to his defense.
I didn’t have the closest relationship with my father but he was a decent hardworking man and I realized I would also defend my dad.
Then, he said something that really caught me off guard.
How often do we defend our heavenly Father when He’s attacked?
Right then … something rose up in me and I came up with:
7 Myths Many People Believe About God
This is not for unbelievers only. There are dedicated church-going people, even pastors, who believe things about God that cannot be proven by scripture.
Everything we base our life on as Christians must have a scriptural foundation. But as importantly… we need to be sure our beliefs are based on unmistaken truth and not partial scriptures taken out of context.
That is why every one of us must constantly study the scriptures for greater depth and revelation.
Myth # 1: God is in control
Lots of people make this blanket statement without qualifying what they mean when they say, “God is in control.”
There can be some truth in a statement … but if it is carried to an extreme it can be very dangerous and lead many Christians and unbelievers astray.
If God were in control of everything … the first thing He’d probably do is “make sure” everyone got saved. Isn’t that His heart’s desire (Matthew 18:14).
But if God were in control of everything, it would not be logical for Jesus to give us the prayer (Matthew 6:10) to pray. “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.”
I’m pretty sure God is in control in heaven but on earth? God may want everyone to be saved but not everyone cooperates with His plan for salvation.
If Jesus came to earth to reach the Jewish people and God were in control, Jesus wouldn’t have cried over the city like He did in Matthew 23:37:
“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!”
Let’s establish what is scripturally accurate about God.
First, Genesis Chapter 1 describes how He made heaven and earth. Second, we can believe He is all knowing & all powerful. We see this by the miracles He performed that He had powers above all men. But Jeremiah 23:23,24 in The Good News Translation says:
23 “I am a God who is everywhere and not in one place only. 24 No one can hide where I cannot see them. Do you not know that I am everywhere in heaven and on earth?
We also have Psalm 139:8 in which David says:
“If I ascend into heaven, You are there;
If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there.”
In Acts 15:18 we can read:
“… Who has been making these things known from the beginning of the world.”
Can we believe that God is all knowing? That He can also be everywhere at once?
That’s what the scripture clearly says.
But if God were in complete control, there would be no scriptures with “if” in them. Those are the ones we need to pay close attention to because they let us know what our part is.
If we don’t know what we are supposed to do … we are waiting for God to do something when He’s been waiting for us!
Myth #2God can do whatever He wants on earth because His purpose will always stand
Is God’s purpose going to be accomplished? Of course … but how He does it may be subject to change.
Joshua 21:45 NLT says:
“Not a single one of all the good promises the Lordhad given to the family of Israel was left unfulfilled; everything he had spoken came true.”
God wanted the first generation of Israelites to make it to the Promised Land but when we read the long story about them we find the people themselves chose not to believe God.
Just to prove the point, we need to note that of the 12 spies Joshua and Caleb were allowed to enter … simply because they believed God.
God made King David a promise in I Chronicles 17 … that his posterity would sit on the throne of Israel forever.
King David probably envisioned one of his children’s children successfully doing this. I think nothing would have pleased God more than to have David’s children rule down through the ages.
However, there were many and varied Kings and mishaps described in the Old Testament before God’s purpose did prevail … and Jesus was born as the eternal King of Israel.
Isaiah 46:10 says:
“Declaring the end and the result from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all My pleasure and purpose.”
God fulfilled His purpose with the Children of Israel and He fulfilled His purpose with Jesus being born in the lineage of King David. God is all powerfulbut He also understands the hearts of men.
Jeremiah 27:5 AMP declares:
“ I have made the earth, the men, and the beasts that are upon the face of the earth by My great power and by My outstretched arm, and I give it to whomever it seems right and suitable to Me.”
God gave the earth to Adam but again, as a man he made the wrong choice and lost his right to rule over it.
Myth # 3God doesn’t have feelings like we do
Even when we read where God becomes angry or has a tender moment it’s difficult for a lot of people to think God has feelings.
Perhaps we don’t consider He can have feelings and not sin since He’s perfect (Matthew 5:48).
But it is possible to be angry and not sin. Ephesians 4:26 AMP says:
“When angry, do not sin; do not ever let your wrath (your exasperation, your fury or indignation) last until the sun goes down.”
Or, perhaps because we are imperfect, it’s hard to imagine God as having emotions without making Him seem imperfect too. However, since we were made in His Image (Genesis 1:27) we should expect that we will be like Him.
Psalm 35:27 says He takes pleasure in our prosperity. Jeremiah 32:41 in the King James Version say:
“Yea, I will rejoice over them to do them good, and I will plant them in this land assuredly with my whole heart and with my whole soul.”
The scripture says God has a heart and a soul!
Jesus is described in Hebrews 4:15:
“For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.”
Myth #4God foreordained certain people to do things and nothing can change that
God must have a lot of faith in us because there are times in the Bible where He set people in positions and they certainly could have failed.
But maybe theirs wasn’t the first time He sent someone to do His bidding. We will have to be in heaven before we find out how many times God had to put plan B or C or D or Z in motion.
Jonah is a good example of a man set on a mission who almost didn’t complete it but Esther gives us one of the best pictures of all.
In the book of Esther we read where the little Jewish girl sent to Babylon is chosen among hundreds if not thousands to become Queen as God positions her with favor for an important assignment.
For soon the evil Haman decided to rid the country of all Jews although no one is aware that Esther is also Jewish.
Her adopted father, Mordecai, tells her to go plead her cause with the King … but frightened Esther declares that it’s been weeks since the King has asked to see her. His disapproval would mean certain death.
Self preservation is strong in all of us. But in Chapter 4:13, Mordecai’s words to Esther give us a glimpse of how God works on earth:
And Mordecai told them to answer Esther: “Do not think in your heart that you will escape in the king’s palace any more than all the other Jews.
“For if you remain completely silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place,but you and your father’s house will perish. Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?”
Mordecai is certain God will save His people … but the question is … will it come through Esther?
That is a good question for all of us today. We know God’s purpose will be accomplished … but will we be found helping or hindering?
I’m reminded of reading a book by Kenneth Hagin Sr, founder of Rhema Bible Training Center in Broken Arrow, OK, in which he asked God how and why He’d chosen him to begin this international work. He was surprised when the Lord responded that he had not been the first one chosen. If I remember correctly, God had asked six others before him but none would answer the call.
Myth # 5 If something happens, God must have had a reason
If you oversleep and miss church … did God have a reason for it?
If you miss your turn and are late to an important appointment, did God have a reason for it?
Hosea 4:6 says: “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.”
It’s not a matter of proving our beliefs are right because it doesn’t really matter what we think … it matters what God says … because His Word is our only hope for real success.
2 Peter 1:3-9 NKJV is a very informative section of scripture on the subject of understanding what we were given and what to do with it:
“as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue,
”by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.
”But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge,
”to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness,
”to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love.
”For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
”For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins.”
In this passage we learn:
1 God has given us everything we need for life and for godliness
2 We learn this through knowledge of Him
3 We were given great promises
4 We may partake of His divine nature by embracing them
5 Because we were taken out of the corruption of this world
6 For this reason we are able through diligence to add to our faith many attributes that will lead us to fruitfulness in Christ Jesus.
7 But if we don’t we will suffer lack.
We are to know what the Word says.
Have you ever heard, “All things work together for good?”
This generalized statement about Romans 8:28 can be misinterpreted as something far from its intended meaning. Certainly all things do not work together for good. Many tragedies are just that … tragedies that God had nothing to do with.
What does Romans 8:28 really say:
”And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.”
First of all, this scripture is talking about those who love God.
Second, they must be called according to His purpose.
Then, all things will work together for good!
From the first part of the teaching, we can see that someone may be going along with a Christian “tag” but it doesn’t always go well with them.
When Jonah went the opposite way God called him, he ended up in the belly of a whale. It only worked together for good when he repented and went back to God’s purpose.
Myth #6 God is behind the bad things that happen because He allowed it to happen
How many good people are perishing because they believe this lie?
What about the people who go to the funeral home to hear the preacher say: “God must have needed another flower in heaven since this little girl died so young.”
Ted Turner is classic example of this myth about our great and loving God. His 15 year old sister died of lupus and his father later committed suicide over the tragedy. That was the day Turner is said to have walked out of church forever.
According to what’s been written about him this is his idea of God: “If that’s the way God treats people, I don’t want to have anything to do with Him.”
What is God’s true character? The Psalms are full of description after description of God’s loving kindness and tender mercies.
James 1:12-17 gives this characterization of God:
”God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.
”And remember, when you are being tempted, do not say, “God is tempting me.” God is never tempted to do wrong, and he never tempts anyone else.14 Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away.
”These desires give birth to sinful actions. And when sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death.
”So don’t be misled,my dear brothers and sisters.
”Whatever is good and perfect comes down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens. He never changes or casts a shifting shadow.
”He chose to give birth to us by giving us his true word. And we, out of all creation, became his prized possession.
If anyone wants to see an example of how longsuffering God really is they should read how many times God tried to help King Ahab of Israel who is described as the most wicked king up to that point (1 Kings 16:30).
God tried time and again to prove to King Ahab that He needed to serve Him and not Baal.
When Israel was besieged by the Syrian King and 32 other kings, the prophet showed up. I Kings 20:13 says:
“Suddenly a prophet approached Ahab king of Israel, saying, “Thus says the Lord: ‘Have you seen all this great multitude? Behold, I will deliver it into your hand today, and you shall know that I am the Lord.’”
That is the character of the God we serve and if that isn’t enough… after He defeats the King Ahab’s enemies, the Lord helps him again and again.
I Kings 20:22 says:
”Sometime later the prophet came to the king of Israel and said, “On the alert now—build up your army, assess your capabilities, and see what has to be done. Before the year is out, the king of Aram will be back in force.”
Each time God comes to King Ahab’s rescue but he still refuses to recognize God as God.
It is unfortunate that God gets blamed for a lot of things that He had nothing to do with just because the devil is alive and active (Ephesians 2:2).
In the United States, there are more and more places where God has been taken out of … schools, government offices, and business workplaces. But then people want to know why He didn’t come to their rescue if He’s God.
They expect Him to come barging into places He is no longer welcome. That is not His nature. As a matter of fact, when God leaves … the door is flung open for the devil unless the saints of God are praying that He intervene!
We have been given the authority to act on His behalf and it is up to us to do so (Luke 10:19) or many will perish.
Myth # 7 God is waiting for us to do something wrong so He can punish us
I feel led to bring this up because there are some Christians who feel this way … and too many unbelievers who do not serve God because they think He wants to ‘swat them like a fly.”
Sadly, this unscriptural view of God keeps a lot of people out of heaven.
There is a difference between God, our loving heavenly Father, and the principles He set forth for us to observe so we can live prosperously in every way.
No matter how much God loves us, He will not break His own principles to save us. He makes it clear that we have a choice.
It would be like a court Judge letting his own child go free for an offense when everyone else had to pay. No matter how much the judge loves his child, if the child breaks the law, he should receive the consequences of his crime.
Psalm 138:2 says:
I will worship toward Your holy temple, And praise Your name For Your lovingkindness and Your truth; For You have magnified Your word above all Your name.
Today on Father’s Day … it is good to remember our earthly Fathers but it’s time to remember to stand up for our heavenly Father as well.BLOG COMMENTS POWERED BY DISQUS