There is so much about God that I don’t understand and I often struggle to worship what I think of as the unfathomable nature of God. Generally, when I think about God being unfathomable it refers to the hard stuff. Death, punishment, suffering – all the things that happen and that I know break God’s heart and yet they continue to occur. That stuff is hard to understand. I’m not designed to understand it. Mostly, I think, because it isn’t the way God meant for things to be. Instead, sin entered the world. We invited sin into our world and we continue to do so. But why doesn’t God stop it? Why does He let us suffer so much sometimes?
In Exodus, God tells Moses and the people of Israel of the land that He prepares for them. The land that He will bring them to and make their own.
You shall serve the Lord your God, and He will bless your bread and your water, and I will take sickness away from among you. None shall miscarry or be barren in your land; I will fulfill the number of your days.”
A perfect land awaits the Israelites. A Garden of Eden where food is plentiful and none get sick. The Israelites reach the landscape but they never live in the land that God describes. A quick glance around will tell you that we don’t live there either.
This weekend, as we mourn the death of Christ and we celebrate His resurrection, I am reminded of another unfathomable aspect of God.
For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person – though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die- but God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
What is harder to understand than someone sacrificing their own child? Someone sacrificing their own child for me? for my neighbours? for the boys who shot up Columbine? for (insert whatever terrible person you want here – Christ died for them too). What kind of love is that? Are we worthy recipients of that kind of love?
Absolutely not. Paul says it right there in Romans – we were sinners and God did that for us. But we don’t push against this unfathomable act as much as others because this act benefits us. This act saved us. We will never understand it.
Did you know that unfathomable actually means “incapable of being measured”? A fathom is a unit of measurement used for water. Unfathomable means the fathoms cannot be counted – the bottom cannot be reached. It is the measurement of His love for us.
There is a lot that I don’t know. I have no idea how much God loves me. It is unfathomable.
“I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be my people. And no longer shall each one teach his neighbour or each his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest,” declares the Lord. “For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.”
Happy Easter. He is risen indeed.