The Zeal of God; August 3, 2017


2 Kings 19:31 The zeal of the Lord Almighty will accomplish this.

“Zeal” is expressed in Japanese as “hot heart.” There are real risks to thinking of God anthropomorphically, as though He had a physical body like ours, but we have difficulty thinking of Him any other way. God doesn’t have a heart in the sense of a blood-pumping organ, but in another way he is all heart, because He is love. (1 John 4:8) One of the things about God that is so remarkable to human intellect is that He cares. After all, why would the Creator of the entire universe care about such insignificant beings as we are? There are mysteries of time and dimension that cannot be explained even by string theory, which to our intellect makes God unknowable, but from His side He has revealed Himself to us in various ways and given us the gift of faith by which we may know Him. Insisting on being able to figure everything out is pride, and that drives us farther from Him. That’s why Jesus said that we have to come as little children before we can see, much less enter, the kingdom of heaven. (Luke 18:16-17) Like little children, we need to trust Daddy. That’s not to say that we are to turn off the brains God has given us. That’s a frequent accusation made against those who live by faith and not by sight, (2 Corinthians 5:7) and some people do seem to use “faith” as an excuse to throw common sense out the window. We are to exercise all the gifts God has given us, intellectual and otherwise, but we must remember that they are ultimately not enough. We have to choose to trust that God’s “hot heart” is going to accomplish everything necessary for our salvation.

We are certainly in a time of training in faith and trust. Had yesterday’s conference taken place a year ago, we would not be embarked on our current project. As it is, we are being reminded not to trust in any human instrument but in God alone. In a number of ways we are feeling around in the dark, but as it says in a song by my friend Chu Kosaka, “Jesus is the Light; He’s shining in the darkness, and you know that He’ll lead you.” It’s not that we aren’t to plan, but that we are to submit our plans to Him and be at peace with whatever changes He makes. The more that we are aware that we are unable, the more we are to rejoice that He is more than able. He has made it clear in various ways that this is His plan, and we are to be faithful in our obedience so that all of His purposes for His plan may be fulfilled.

Father, thank You for making it clear that You, and no human individual, are our supply. Help us trust Your “hot heart” to accomplish all that You intend, for the salvation of many and for Your glory. Thank You. Hallelujah!

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About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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