La imagen de Dios

What if my image of God is wrong? | According to the Bible

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In recent months, I have had the opportunity to meet several Muslim people.

One of the things that have been most interesting to me is how they consider themselves to be worshiping the same God as Christians and Jews.

However, the conception of character, or the image they have of God, does not correspond to the Jewish-Christian one.

One of the issues under discussion among those who study comparative religion is whether it is possible to accept that claim.

That it is the same God, when clearly the images or ideas of God are different.

That’s interesting to me because it’s then possible that we think to be worshiping God, when we’re actually worshiping a wrong image of Him.

Interestingly, an event with a similar idea is recorded in the Bible.

This time we see the people of Israel engaged in a terrible sin that cost the lives of thousands of Israelites.

Moses was on Mount Sinai talking to God and receiving the tablets with the ten commandments.

When he took several days to return, the people became highly impatient and aggressive.

God had already presented to Israel, from mount Sinai, the ten commandments, and they had promised not to make for themselves images of gods.

Still, the people demanded that Aaron, whom God had determined to be the first priest in his tabernacle, build them a god.

An idol to worship.

Aaron, frightened by the horde that was besieging him, decided to do what the people asked him and made them a golden calf.

That was already a catastrophic sin in itself.

However, the sin worsened when the people of Israel determined that it was that idol who had brought them out of the land of Egypt.

Read that aside with me:

He took what they handed him and made it into an idol cast in the shape of a calf, fashioning it with a tool.

 

Then they said, “These are your gods, Israel, who brought you up out of Egypt.”

 

When Aaron saw this, he built an altar in front of the calf and announced, “Tomorrow there will be a festival to the Lord.”

 

So the next day the people rose early and sacrificed burnt offerings and presented fellowship offerings.

 

Afterward they sat down to eat and drink and got up to indulge in revelry.

 

Exodus 32:4 – 6

 

Aaron, seeing the frenzy and the consequence of his mistake, tried to fix the situation.

He wanted to bring the attention of the people from the idol back to God.

For this, he determined to affirm that this idol was Jehovah, the true God, the living God.

He raised an altar and decreed a holiday for Jehovah.

The gravity of their sin became infinite by lowering the image of the true God to that of an inert piece of metal in the shape of an animal.

Even more so, knowing that for God this was abominable.

This terrible incident allows us to rescue an idea that I found peculiarly interesting.

The Israelites had an idea of what God was or who God was that did not correspond to reality.

Their conception was mixed with the ideas they brought from Egypt.

For them, in their cloudy understanding and given the worldview they brought, it was perfectly reasonable that this idol could be God Himself.

This is where I think the idea becomes relevant to us.

Just as the people of Israel believed they were worshiping Jehovah by worshiping an image they considered to be the image of Jehovah, we too can do the same.

Maybe you and I are not worshiping a physical image today, thinking we are worshiping God.

However, we may have an image of God’s character which does not correspond to reality and be worshiping that image instead of worshiping the true God.

I believe that the principle in both cases is the same and opts for the idea of who God is.

For Israel, in that event, God was a physical image that corresponded with preconceived ideas of what a god should be.

For you or for me, when faced with the question, who is God? the answer may be someone other than who He really is.

We may be worshiping a wrong image of God, thinking, even unconsciously, that He is an autocratic dictator, a severe being devoid of mercy.

An impatient being, a distant being, an implacable being, an egotistical being, etc.

Our mental image of God, which in many cases is unconscious, may be causing us to deviate from our worship, moving away from the true God and focusing on a non-existent being.

This causes us to deprive ourselves of a solid, stable, lasting, and above all true life experience and relationship with God.

Now, understanding who God really is becomes a personal but not subjective journey.

The Bible reveals the character of God as an infinitely good being, in whom all existing positive qualities reside and whose main motive is love.

It’s a personal journey because no one can do it for you, it’s a journey where you’re going to know God for who He really is.

You will do so by seeing how the real character expressed in his word corresponds to the observations of his love in your life.

I would like to encourage you to consider what your idea of God’s character is, if you find in it any shadow of error, start exploring God’s heart more closely so that you know Him for who He really is.


What do you think? Have you had the wrong image of God? What is your experience? Share in the comments.


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A hug, God bless you.

What if my image of God is wrong? | According to the Bible

About Post Author

Daniel & Jessi

When my mind was filled with doubts, your comfort renewed my hope and my joy. Psalms 94:19 | I know very well the plans I have for you — affirms the Lord — plans for well-being and not for calamity, in order to give you a future and hope. Jeremiah 29:11
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