Even before we came to this earth and identified with our earthly parents, we already had a father. Many people never realized this on time, we were told about God, we were told about His sovereignty, we were told that God created the entire world and is the Lord of all. Whether you found it in the Quran or in the Torah, one thing was common; God is the King of Kings, the Lord over all and for some people, His name is too holy to be mentioned by mere mortals who couldn’t attain God’s standard of Holiness.
However, there is something remarkable that we always disregard whether you are seeing it from the Quran perspective or from the Torah. In Quran 38:71-72, we see a report that says this “I am going to create a human (Adam) from sounding clay of altered black smooth mud. So when I have fashioned him and breathed into him (his) soul created by Me, then you fall down prostrate to him.” and we also see an even more profound perspective in Genesis 1:27 “So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.” God created man with an amazing intention, He wasn’t going to start bossing man around and He had always wanted the man to be honoured. If God made man in His image, He wanted much more than worshippers.
God didn’t say “let us create man to worship me” He already had worshippers who were created to worship Him but if the man should worship God, God wanted willingness to worship and therefore, in the beginning, there was no command from God to man, to worship Him. Making man in His image alone was a glory to be reckoned with that the fallen angel (satan) became aggrieved!
“If God made man in His image, He wanted much more than worshippers.”
After Satan had deceived man to seek an extra knowledge which actually doesn’t exist, the man left the ways of God and sojourned into the path of Satan; leaving Satan in control (Luke 4:6) and venturing into a futile search for God and what pleases Him. This was how religion was birthed, the man continued to try to please God by their own efforts but the more they try the more they failed because God needed no effort of man to make him perfect just as in the beginning. God already made man and bestowed on him all authority, honour and goodness but Satan made the man believe that there was more hidden from them. The only thing the perfect man never knew was rebellion against God in the search for more knowledge above what God has given.
As men kept searching for God and seeking for ways to get back to fellowship with God, religion kept thriving and the dimensions of religion kept expanding. Laws upon laws kept coming and even when God reveals himself to selected people, they couldn’t really explain what they see in the way that it explains the person of God and therefore they were very limited in their explanation of God because they were spiritually blind men.
Concerning this, the Bible reports in the new testament “…the mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed to the Lord’s people.” Various people all over the world sought for diverse means to reach God but God can’t be reached with human effort as it undermines the person of God! In seeking for certain covering and spiritual fulfilment, men began to make their own gods and this was one of Satan’s goals. While everyone wanted to deal with Satan and negative energy, the devil was inspiring them to stick to him in hidden ways.
“God needed no effort of man to make him perfect”
God decided to narrow down on just one people through whom He will spread the knowledge of Himself to the entire world. It wasn’t a strategy that would make sense in an instant, He was preparing a way to make Himself known by Himself. No Angel, or Prophets would explain God in a better light and so God was committed to making Himself known all by Himself. Because of spiritual blindness, the God who desired fellowship was seen as a God who was power-drunk. That was the distorted view of God that religion has. Both the Torah and the Quran presented God as a Master in a sense it presents us as His slaves to some degree. Describing the helplessness of man, Bildad said to Job in Job 25:6 “how much less a mortal, who is but a maggot– a human being, who is only a worm!” but seeing from the point of revelation, David cried out to God saying in Psalms 8:4-6 “What is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them? Yet you made them only a little lower than God (Adonai) and crowned them with glory and honour. You gave them charge of everything you made, putting all things under their authority— ”
While we wallowed in ignorance, spiritual loneliness and quest to have that vacuum filled up which only God would fill, God kept revealing Himself to the people He had chosen but they only saw it in types and shadows because they were spiritually blind as the corruption of this world still covered their sight like veils. Concerning this, the Bible says in Colossians 2:17 “These are a shadow of the things that were to come…” When God told the Israelites in Exodus 29:45 “Then I will dwell among the Israelites and be their God.” He was making reference to a spiritual Israel which the nation of Israel only represented as a type and shadows of what was to come.
Through the Prophets of old, God announced His plans for the Salvation of man and healing from the spiritual blindness that has ravaged the earth. Micah wrote in 5:2 of his prophecy “The Lord says, “Bethlehem Ephrathah, you are one of the smallest towns in Judah, but out of you I will bring a ruler for Israel, whose family line goes back to ancient times.” Isaiah also saw in a revelation as he wrote in Isaiah 7:14, 9:6 “But the LORD will still give you proofs. A virgin is pregnant; she will have a son and will name him Immanuel… A child is born to us! A son is given to us! And he will be our ruler. He will be called, “Wonderful Counselor,” “Mighty God,” “Eternal Father,” “Prince of Peace.””
“God kept revealing Himself to the people He had chosen but they only saw it in types and shadows because they were spiritually blind”
Many years later, in a very lowly manger in Bethlehem just like Micah prophesied, a child was born and as Isaiah had written, He was born of a virgin. Some wise men of the East who understood the timing saw the star of God appear in the sky as it was written in Numbers 24:17 and they went to behold this child and bow in worship, acknowledging that indeed God, God is among men at this time. When Herod learnt of this and sought to kill the Child who was named Jesus, Hosea 11:1 was fulfilled as Jesus was taken to Egypt from where He came back to Israel. This also clarified why Jacob had to go to Egypt.
Even the Quran couldn’t hide certain truths about Jesus no matter how it is tried. The Quran said concerning Jesus in Surah 3:45 “O Mary! Allah giveth thee glad tidings of a Word from Him: his name will be Christ Jesus, the son of Mary, held in honour in this world and the Hereafter and of (the company of) those nearest to Allah.” In Quran 3:39,45,4:171, it couldn’t be scraped off the Quran that Jesus is the word of God. In Quran 40:56, it is also agreed that God creates with His word! Quran agrees too that Jesus is the Spirit from God Quran 21:19. Although efforts have been made to deny the divinity of Jesus, it can’t be completely hidden as no other prophet in the Quran was given such attribute.
Concerning this Child, the Bible in John 1:1 records that He is the word of God, the same word with which the entire world was created. Although called the “son of God”, He was God in the flesh showing us the clear picture of who He is and who we should be. We were made to be like God in the flesh and Jesus being God in flesh was the clear example of who we were made to be. Jesus grew up possessing the very qualities of God, clarifying all the rumours that had been broadcasted about God. He was out to correct all the information given to us about God. The teachers of the law never understood Him but it was also His intention that they don’t understand Him because it will set the stage for the salvation of mankind.
“Even the Quran couldn’t hide certain truths about Jesus no matter how it is tried.”
In all the confusions arising from the teachings of all the Prophets, Jesus said in Matthew 5:17 (CEV) “Don’t suppose I came to do away with the Law and the Prophets. I did not come to do away with them, but to give them their full meaning.” We never knew the meanings of what these Prophets had written because they were codes and not reality, we had documented their teachings and made laws out of them not knowing it was only but a pointer to Jesus. Although Jesus knew that some things would be heavy for the people to grasp in their state of blindness, He said: “I and the Father are one.” (John 10:30) Wait a minute! This is the Master He was talking about, the God of all flesh, the one who uses the earth as His footstool and He didn’t call Him master but “father!” He didn’t just call Him Father, He also said they are one.
Jesus went around doing good, healing the sick, supporting people with compassion in His heart and treating women so right that in Him, they saw the picture of the perfect man. Jesus was both the vivid picture of the perfect man and God all at the same time. In Jesus, humanity and divinity were pictured together. He went about forgiving sins and setting the captives free!
As that was never enough, Jesus took upon Himself the old judgment upon man which says in Genesis 2:17 “If you eat its fruit, you are sure to die”. The judgment had kept resonating as all men were labelled sinners because of the disobedience of one man from whom all men proceeded from. The devil thought he had won, he thought he had separated man from God and made men see God as a wicked boss but Jesus took up the sins of men upon Himself so that the judgment would be met on Him. This was the biggest and shameful defeat of the devil. No wonder He was called in John 1:29 “…the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.” Using the blindness of the world who never recognized Him, He walked up to the cross in pains. The pain was too much on His humanity that He cried out in Matthew 26:39 “My Father! If it is possible, let this cup of suffering be taken away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.” In the face of this pain, he still opted for what He came to do which was to liberate man who couldn’t liberate Himself.
“Jesus took up the sins of men upon Himself so that the judgment would be met on Him. This was the biggest and shameful defeat of the devil.”
He got crucified, He died, He was buried and on the third day, after preaching Himself to the spirits of the dead and solving the problem of sin from the foundations of this world, He resurrected in glory as a new man! But wait a minute! This time, He didn’t just tell us about His father in heaven. Although He had made us know in “the Lord’s prayer” that God is our father, He made it so much more obvious after His resurrection when He said to Mary Magdalene in John 20:17 “Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.” By the reason of His sacrifice, we had become just like Him. We had become His brothers in the flesh and His children in the Spirit. We can now know God beyond “Master” and we can now call Him “Daddy!”
Jesus became us that we might become Him. And the Bible had reported in John 1:12 saying “But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God.” He didn’t want us to just be His subjects, He didn’t just want us to bow and worship Him just like the Angels, He wanted our friendship, He wanted a union and He wanted us to recognize Him as our father. In John 3:16, we also saw that if we accept Him, He gifts us His own life!
The New Testament gospel presents us with an answer, a liberating answer of who God is and who we are in Him. The Quran called Him master, the Torah and the Prophets did same, some even made idols and referred the idols as Him but He came as Jesus, presenting to us a very clear picture of who He is! God is not just our God, He is also our friend and He is our father. Therefore, we are no longer afraid to mention His name and His name is Jesus.
“Jesus became us that we might become Him.”
Jesus brought an end to religion and brought alive the first intent of making the man. All God ever wanted was relationship and here we have it in Christ! The Bible says concerning them that have believed, Romans 8:16 “For his Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God’s children.” What wasn’t clear has become clear.
Nowhere else have we been presented with this truth, not in the Quran, not in any religion and even with the shadows of truth in the Torah and writings of the Prophets, there was limited information. It is only in the New Testament, in the manifestation of Jesus that humanity is clearly defined and the works of darkness greatly humiliated! The Bible says concerning us in Romans 8:14-17 “For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. The Spirit you received does not make you slaves so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him, we cry, “Abba, Father.” The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs–heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.””
What an exciting truth! We aren’t trying to find God anymore, God has found us and we are united with Him in Christ. You too can experience this truth for yourself. It takes you just one thing; to believe it! God is no longer a myth, He is exposed and what a blessing it is to be called “His children.”
“Jesus brought an end to religion and brought alive the first intent of making the man.”
God bless you.God has a family and it is a great privilege that we are members of God’s family. Religion cannot offer this, this is only possible in Christ. Imagine Jesus saying to us individually “I am your brother and we are seated together on the right hand of my father and your father.” Just as the Bible reports in Ephesians 2:6 “And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus.” Hallelujah!
God bless you.
~ George O.N