God’s Nature, Our Nature – Part 1

43 Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.

44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;

45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. Mat. 5:43-45

Luke adds something there:

35 But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil. 36 Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful” (Lk. 6:35-36).

People want to be paid for every little thing they do! More so today than ever before, fewer and fewer people can think of doing anything for anyone – even God – without attaching a financial tag to their ‘good’ work.

And it is not just money that people are after. Appreciation and gratitude is another thing that people avidly seek after. People love the gratification of self. A simple “Thank you” can turn into a deadly trap for the heaven-bound person. The minute you demand to be acknowledged or thanked in your heart, the good you just did is forgotten, lost forever. Jesus specifically said so:

Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward” (Mat. 6:2).

There are many things that the human heart desires, and when these desires are appeased, the Bible considers it as payment. But regardless of this warning by our Lord, even believers want to gain in this world.

But that is not God’s nature. God is kind, and He gives freely. Just stop and think about the many good things that God does for us? Who pays Him?

Let us consider what Matthew says:

“…for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.”

Why does the Bible here mention only the sun and rain? It is because these two things form the basis of life on earth. And the Bible says that God gives them to us freely and without measure.

Think about the sun. The sun is not a spiritual something; it is matter. Now, definitely, a lot of physical energy is used to run that raging orb of fire! So who runs it? God does. God physically runs the sun. They say nothing is free in this world, but you haven’t seen a bill for the sunlight lately, have you? But God runs the sun at His own material and physical expense. God keeps the sun burning to provide the heat and light that is needed for us to stay alive, healthy and happy.

And just think about the rain. A lot of physical work is needed to condense and pour down all that water upon the earth. Physical work, I say. And who does all that work? It is God who does it. And once He is ready to pour down the rain, He does not ration the water for us. Year after year, generation upon generation He pours down rain far in excess of our needs.

The more interesting fact is that God keeps the fact of His ‘busy-ness’ on our behalf a closely-guarded secret. He keeps it under wraps, so to speak. So much so that most people think these things happen of their own accord.

The Bible says that God even dresses up the flowers, and that He feeds the birds! How busy God is. While we are busy defending our small little rights and protecting our insignificant little backyards, God is busy doing good on a physical and spiritual scale that defies any form of description.

There are people who work very hard and who believe that others should not benefit from their hard labor. God would put such people to shame!

And, by the way, did you happen to read that God neither slumbers nor sleeps (Ps. 121:4)? I haven’t read anywhere where it says that God would not want to ease up on His schedule and rest aways. But He stays awake and alert on our behalf. Have you ever thought how this world can remain in so much relative peace while there is so much evil abounding? That also comes from God. He holds back the evil.

God is the most selfless Person ever. This blog would not suffice to list the thousands of different kinds of provision that God affords mankind in the physical realm, free of charge.

Now, with all the physical and material cost that goes into the preparation and delivery of all these things, you would think that God would give them only to those who are obedient and pleasing to Him – those who do good. With God nothing is impossible, and it would be a very small matter for Him to only shine His sun on His good servant and leave the bad guy patting his way about in the darkness even if the two were sleeping in the same bed.

But again that is not God’s nature. Luke’s account says He is kind even to the unthankful. Now, I can assure you that dealing with a thankless person is an extremely testing experience. You do something for someone and they do not thank you well enough. That is highly inflammatory, to say the least.

But do you know how many thankless people are enjoying God’s sun and His rain and every other provision that God has to offer? In actual fact, God blesses the evil more than He does the good. Regardless of what you have heard taught in church, have you not noticed that the unrighteous people in this world are also the richest materially? Undoubtedly, that is one of the most obvious facts in this world.

And now we come to the mind-boggling final look at the nature of God. Have you, as a child of God, ever thought about the fact of God’s grace in choosing you to inherit salvation? You were no better than your fellow man who dies in their sin and goes to hell. You never paid a cent for your salvation. And the even more incredible truth is that you were rebellious right up to the minute that God saved you.

Personally, I recall that God came looking for me at the wrongest possible moment in my life. I was 25 years old at the time, and “enjoying life” to the full. And I was extremely rebellious. My grandmother used to call me the ‘king of the Baganda’. To this day, I never knew what she meant by that term, but I do know that in our family of more than ten members, I seemed to rule everyone and everything. Whatever I said in that house was law… even my father and my mother and my elder brothers were expected to obey it. Later on in my adult life, my mom would look at me and she would begin to laugh, and she would laugh and laugh and I would ask what she was laughing about, and she would remind me of any one of a thousand ‘epic’ dust storms that I raised in that home during my heydays.

Anyways, on the day that I got saved, as I knelt down and they began to pray for me, I do remember that I was tempted to stand up and walk away… the rebellious nature in me was rising up even as they prayed over me to get saved! But as the pastor and his team of three young men pressed on in prayer – with their hands firmly planted on my head – a miracle happened, and a transformation occurred in my life. I instantly became as meek as a lamb. You might think it a rather fictional account that someone would need four men to hold him down in order to get him saved; but Saul, who would later on become the Apostle Paul, needed a bolt of lightning from heaven to cool his heels!

Even today, I am awed by the grace of that moment. God held me down there until He had delivered me from the devil’s clutches. Somehow, He needed me that badly. Amazing!

In whatever fashion we were saved, though, the fact is that our salvation is totally a work of grace. It is God Himself who chooses men and calls them. And after He has called them, He washes them clean and begins forming them to become His sons and daughters in the Spirit.

[Below: Just like children, we are partakers of God’s hard labor, freely and generously given, both physically and spiritually]

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