Life becomes a lot simpler (not necessarily easier) once you deal with the issue of authority.
Little children need to be made to submit to authority long before they can deeply understand why. They must learn who the boss is before they are able to comprehend all the good reasons for it. Certainly, as they grow a bit older their little minds and consciences need to be educated as well.
The same is true in a bigger sense for adults who seek to relate to God.
Now that I’m a “free-thinker”, I consider the ways that God has acted throughout history and sometimes think, “I wouldn’t have done it that way.” Maybe I just read something in the Bible about God commanding somebody to chop off somebody’s head or something. Or I’m reading the Law of Moses that says to stone someone to death. Or I’m reading the words of Jesus, who says that if you do not believe in and submit to Him you will burn eternally in hell. (Yes, Jesus said that.)
I’m not saying that I’ve finally got God figured out. I don’t. But I have come to know Him. Here’s the real bottom line, very powerfully reflected in a quote from the old great radio preacher, J. Vernon McGee (now with the Lord):
“This is God’s universe, and God does things His way. You may have a better way, but you don’t have a universe.”
I’m not suggesting that anyone truly has a better way than God’s way. But most of us have spent far too much time thinking we do. That’s what sin is. I think I know what will better meet my needs and satisfy my life than God does. So I rebel against Him. .
But facts are stubborn things, aren’t they? Take gravity, for instance. I may not like it, but it’s simply the reality. I wish I could dunk the basketball. But gravity (and genetics) simply do not allow it. In a universe of my making I would certainly be dunking the ball. Heck, I’d also be the Heisman trophy winner and have several Academy Awards and beach houses, etc.. Let’s just be honest, I’d probably be the king of the world. I could do whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted to.
So that’s my point. God is God. There is no other. And He is who He says that He is and who He has revealed Himself to be in the Scriptures and in His Son, Jesus Christ. And we all have to deal with it.
And the good news is that as soon as we start to submit to Him and His reign in our lives, the whole situation starts taking on a new look. We begin to realize that His rules weren’t so crazy after all. We begin to realize that He has always had the highest good of His creation in mind…in EVERYTHING He has ever done. We just don’t have His wisdom, perspective, or power.
So just remember: You may think you have a better way, but you don’t have a universe!
Kind of humbling, really. But sooner or later we will all have to deal with this Ruler of the Universe. And when we stand before Him, He’s not going to be asking us to comment on His performance. No sir. We will be the ones called into account.
Just thinking about that for a few seconds makes me really happy that the God of this universe is merciful…and sent a Savior.
What about you?