God Is…

It’s easy to imagine God as an angry man who lives in the sky, makes a bunch of arbitrary rules, and then punishes people like you and me for breaking them. And that is a God who a lot of people preach, and who a lot of people believe in, and who a lot of people fear, and who a lot of people reject. But it is not a God who I recognize; because the God who I know—who I find in scripture and tradition—is love.

image credit: Untitled by Rod Long via Unsplash

God is Love

God is love. That means that God is patient, God is kind, God is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. God does not insist on their own way; God is not irritable; God keeps no record of wrongs; God does not rejoice in wrongdoing but rejoices in the truth. And anyone who tells you something different is not telling you about God.

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Love Liberates

God does not ask the Israelites to follow him because he is powerful, or because he created the cosmos, or because he can send them to hell. God asks them to follow him because of who he is: the one who brought them out of the land of Egypt and the house of slavery. “Follow me,” says God, “because I am the one who liberates you from oppression.”

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Love is Universal

The big story of our faith is that the God who is love is not just for some people but for everyone; and not just for everyone but for all of creation. No one can call profane the world that God has made clean. No one can withhold baptism from the world upon which God has poured the spirit.

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Love Creates

God creates for the love and delight of it. The whole of creation is made by love for love. And that means that everything that is—everyone who is: you and me and everyone else—is a gift. Maybe even a work of art!

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Love Wins

The gospel is the good news that—in the end—the God who is love wins. Everybody is justified. Everybody is made righteous. Everybody receives grace. Everybody lives.

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