The F.A.Q. series came to a close this past weekend and I have to say that while I loved preaching it, it wasn't an easy series to preach. Tackling issues like baptism, salvation, the Bible, and free will ... it takes a lot out of you! From the get-go this series was preached for one purpose - unity.
"Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace. For there is one body and one Spirit, just as you have been called to one glorious hope for the future. There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God and Father, who is over all and in all and living through all."
- Ephesians 4:3-5
On that note, let me give you one simple thought from this past weekend that I hope lodges deep into the heart of our church:
God cannot be defined, explained, or comprehended. You cannot contain, categorize, or otherwise box him in or figure him out. He is beyond our thoughts and bigger than our dreams. His reasoning defies our logic, his thoughts overwhelm our understanding, and his ways are beyond anything we can imagine. He does not need to explain, defend, or in anyway excuse his actions. His grace is unquestioned, his mercy is undeterred, and his love is unending. He is indomitable, invincible, impeccable, and incontrovertible. Without question, God is indescribable.
In asking questions during this series the thought has come to me again and again, "Are we asking questions to KNOW God, or to DEFINE Him?" If our motive has been to know God, then let's ask more questions, but God forbid that we are questioning God in hopes of defining Him. While categorizing God may help us feel better about who we are, it only slights the majesty and glory of a Creator that defies description. My prayer has been that while the series was designed to bring our church together in our understanding of some theological issues, we would actually have been brought closer to knowing our incredible God. If our quest is simply to question God's judgement, plan, or purposes, or to ask Him to defend or explain Himself, I'd suggest we spend time reading from the book of Job for a while, specifically chapter 38 to the end of the book.
Next week brings a new series entitled "Heroes & Villains" which Scott Beebe and I will be co-teaching. It should be a lot of fun as we look at some of the more obscure figures from the Bible and learn from their heroic nature or there villainous deeds! If you're in the area, join us! If you can't make it in person, check us out online at www.liveoakcc.com.