God's word in today's world

Live fully, live freely, and live right

Wow! How many times can one reflect on one Bible book? This is the 200th time we’re working with Hebrews!

I’m going to ask a weird question. I wonder what made God change from the angry Old Testament God to the loving God of the New Testament? The Old Testament is filled with laws, and if you dared cross the boundaries, you could easily be punished by death.

At Sinai, for example, everybody was scared to death. God shouted in such a loud voice that the people became very afraid and 21Even Moses was terrified. The poor animals grazing randomly on the mountain had to be killed.

I think the people of that time were very scared of God.

So very different from what it’s like now. We don’t need to be afraid of God anymore. God overturned the applecart and through Jesus He showed how much He loves us. Indeed, it was Jesus who announced the new day. 24… You’ve come to Jesus, who presents us with a new covenant, a fresh charter from God.

I can’t say whether God’s heart had really changed, but what I do know is that a whole new relationship developed between God and people. Suddenly, God was no longer the grandpa all the grandchildren were scared of. No, now He has turned into the soft grandpa on the couch who holds his grandchildren on his knee and wipes their tears.

All that was made possible by Jesus who died to take the punishment for our sins. The penalty is paid and God no longer sees it when He looks at us. I suspect before Jesus’ huge act to pay our debt on the cross, people’s sins upset God so much and that is probably why we thought He was an angry God.

I know I’m painting a weird picture of God, giving Him traits that don’t belong to Him. But what is crystal clear to me, is that God’s love for me is overflowing. What a privilege to live freely, without debt or fear for God. Now life is so much easier.

However, this doesn’t mean that we can mess around and do what we like. Although God is the loving God, He is still the Saviour. He determines who moves into His house and who doesn’t. 23The invisible Jerusalem is populated by throngs of festive angels and Christian citizens. It is the city where God is Judge, with judgments that make us just.

And no, this is not meant to scare you. Even less do we want to hold a law over your head again and tie up your freedom. No, we must live our freedom in such a way that we will not be ashamed and unsure of the outcome when we get to heaven one day. Live fully. Live freely. Live right.

Hebrews 12:18-24

Are you afraid of God?
Are you living in fear?
Or are you living lightly?

Father, thank you for loving me and wanting me to be with You in heaven. You are on my side. All that You ask, is for me to give You my heart. Please help me to hold onto You with my whole heart and to live freely and lightly. In Jesus’ Name, amen.

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