A God Like That

Lord, you have been our dwelling place in all
generations. Before the mountains were
brought forth, or ever you had formed the
earth and the world, from everlasting to
everlasting you are God.
Throughout the history of the world, but
particularly in ancient times, people have
worshiped and followed all sorts of gods. In
fact, I imagine that most of us, at some point
in high school or college (or both), had to
learn about Greek and Roman gods—the
gods of mythology. Thus, we likely all have
some exposure to these false gods.
Scripture—primarily the Old Testament—
abounds in situations where a variety of gods
are worshiped. Probably the best known to us
is Baal. In the ancient pagan world, Baal was
believed to be the offspring of El, and to have
come from the union of El and his mistress,
Asherah. Asherah is one whom we also
frequently hear of in the Old Testament. For
what it is worth, the name ‘El’ has been the
source of many an interesting discussion,
since virtually every time we find the term
‘God’ (note the capital ‘G’) in our Old
Testament, it comes from the word ‘elohim’
(although on occasion it is simply ‘el’).
‘Elohim’ is a plural construction of ‘el.’ And ‘el’
is a Semitic term that means ‘god’ or ‘deity.’ El
was understood by his pagan worshipers to
be the one who rode the clouds—the “rider of
the storm.” His offspring Baal, to put it simply,
was known as a god of fertility whom it was
believed brought the spring rains and made
the crops grow, among other things.

There is so much wrong, of course,
with these false ‘gods.’ Each is terribly
flawed, for instance. There is no holiness
or purity in them. There is no moment
when they seek the best for those who
worship them. Instead, they seek only self

aggrandizement and self
-satisfaction (and,
to be blunt, this often manifests itself in a
sexual sense). In addition, these are not
‘gods’ who approach their people, but
rather who remain aloof and distant from
those who believe in them. They
manipulate their people for their own
benefit so as to maintain power and
control. In reality, none of these gods is
personal in any way, and none is truly
majestic. There is no relationship to be had
with them, and there is no genuine
majesty. In other words, they are not true
gods. In reality, they are nothing. They are
false. Who would want to worship a god
like that?
The God we know, the true and living
God of heaven, the only God, is a God
who is personal and majestic. He is real,
and he is alive. He is holy and pure. He
seeks only what is best for us, and he goes
about that work by coming close to us. He
is the God who came near. He is the God
who walked the earth. He is the true
bringer of the rain, and the actual rider of
the clouds (Ps 104:3). He is the one who
hears his people, and he is the one who is
active in the world. He is the one who
knows our every step, and who is always
focused on what will bring us nearer to
him. Our God is an awesome God. He
reigns forever. He is the God that Paul said
is “the King of the ages, immortal, invisible,
the only God
” the only God who is to
receive “honor and glory forever and ever.
Who would not want to worship a God
like that?

Share This