To Be Ashamed Of God Is To Judge God
God is real; He is the creator of everything, and He is the creator of you. God is also good. But He’s not good according to Man’s ideas of what good is, rather, He’s good according to His own standard. One aspect of that standard is justice. He judges all things rightly and is just and good in His judgments. It is in light of this judgment that we, His creation, find ourselves in an overwhelming predicament, for we are not good when measured against His holy standard. God’s justice, then, rightly condemns us because we have all broken His law. But there is good news! God loved this world in such a way that we don’t have to abide in His wrath. He sent His Son to pay the price for our sin. That, dear children, is the best news you will ever hear. It is the good news; it is the Gospel.
Yet, here’s the problem for sinful Man, even in light of the gospel. I will let the Bible speak to this, for I don’t want you to think it is me saying it:
What shall we say then? Is there injustice on God’s part? By no means! For he says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.” So then it [salvation] depends not on human will or exertion, but on God, who has mercy. (Rm 9:15-16)
This is, in my own opinion, one of the most difficult passages in the Bible. But what good is my opinion? Am I in a position to judge God? Of course not! And if I were to judge God, against whose standard would I measure him? My own? Should I be ashamed to serve a God who has mercy on some and not others when I am guilty myself of not having mercy on everyone? No! On the contrary, I have but one question that matters more than any other, and that is, does God have mercy on me?
Like the old Hymn says so beautifully: “Just as I am, without one plea, but that thy blood was shed for me . . .” But the writer understood that this one plea was not enough, that there was another plea that needed to be made, so he added another in the next line: “. . . and that Thy bidest me come to thee . . . ” He understood that this plea was just as important. This is the question that you ought to be asking also, and pleading to God for, that He grant to you His mercy as well as bid you come to him.
So here is the objection that causes many Christians to be ashamed of their God. It normally goes something like this: “It doesn’t seem right that God would choose some and not others.” Paul responds to that objection in the same chapter, albeit it’s not a very satisfying response. He answers with a question: “But who are you, O man, to answer back to God? Will what is molded say to its molder, ‘Why have you made me like this?’”
Given that there have probably been millions of pages written attempting to answer this very old question, the only point I want to get across to you now is to not ever be ashamed of your God for not having mercy on some. For to be ashamed of your God you must first judge your God. God is our creator. He can do with us as He pleases, as Paul so painfully points out. And in the end, He will still be good, just, and holy according to the only standard that matters: His, Man’s objections be damned. We must begin all of our thinking with God, you see, and then work our way from him to Man, not the other way around. We start with God, who is good, holy, righteous and perfect. Whatever He does, regardless of what we think, does not change that fact. What we think doesn’t matter because our thinking has been corrupted. We, as mere men, are in no place to judge God for His decisions.
On the other hand, let’s look at all of this from a different angle. That He was pleased to send His Son to satisfy His justice for our sins is the very thing that we have to be thankful for. He poured out His wrath on His sinless Son! We, all of us as sinful Man, would be doomed without this sacrifice. And remember that if God had not sent His Son to die for us, He would still be good. God owes His creation nothing. We must put our faith in His mercy, and plead with him that His blood was shed for us, and also that He bid us, come.
We must not be ashamed of God because He does not measure up to our own ideas of justice based on our own elevated opinion of our value and worth. Observe your world; Man’s justice is corrupt. You don’t need a magnifying glass to understand that. The last thing in this world that we should do is look up from our bloody, war-torn, greedy, idolatrous, deceitful, murderous, God-hating, rebellious, sinful world and demand that God would live up to our views of “justice,” lest we be ashamed of him.
I pray that you would grasp that no greater love is there than the laying down of one’s life for another. I pray for you that God would bid you come. I pray that God would grow you up into people who are according to the Spirit and not the flesh. I pray that you both would become mighty warriors in God’s army and that you would not be lost to God’s wrath. I pray that He would overcome my failures and weaknesses as a mere man, and direct your eyes and your minds to himself. It is my number one prayer for you. And again I pray that God would grant me this one desire. Amen.