Water from the Well: September 6, 1995

Where does God live? The ancient Greeks believed that their gods lived on Mount Olympus and acted much like human beings. Many people today believe that gods inhabit all of nature--trees, rocks, and everything else. Mormons believe that God lives out in space near a star named Kolob.

Any attempt to pin God down to a particular location is doomed to fail. God tells us that he doesn't live in one place or another; he is everywhere. In Jeremiah 23:23-24 God asks, "Am I only a God nearby, and not a God far away? Can anyone hide in secret places so that I cannot see him? Do not I fill heaven and earth?" God is not tied to one particular place or another; God is everyplace at once. God is infinite. You can't go anyplace where God is not.

This isn't necessarily what we like to hear. As human beings we sometimes would like a God who isn't always around. If God isn't everywhere, then he might not be around to see us sin. We don't feel bad about disobeying God if we think he won't see it anyway. Stealing is no problem if no one sees it. Hating others is ok when no one can see what's in your heart. Sex outside of marriage is acceptable if you don't get caught.

We can sometimes get away with sin when others don't know about it, but God isn't fooled. He asked, "Can anyone hide in secret places so that I cannot see him?" The answer, of course, is no. God is everywhere and sees all. He sees everything we do; he sees into our hearts. God knows all our sins. We can't escape God's judgment on our disobedience: he condemns all who disobey him to an eternity of punishment.

God is everywhere. Not only does he see all our sins, not only does he see that we deserve to be punished for those sins, but he also sees that on our own we have no hope of escaping that punishment we deserve. That's why he sent Jesus, his own Son. As true man, Jesus was subject to the same law and requirement of holiness we are. As true God, Jesus was able to live a perfectly holy life as we are supposed to, and he did live a completely sinless life. Jesus gave up his perfect, sinless life for us on the cross, suffered the punishment we deserve for our sins, and died in our place. Because Jesus suffered and died instead of us, we no longer have to suffer God's punishment, but instead look forward to an eternity of blessing in heaven.

God is everywhere. For Christians, those whom God has forgiven through faith in Jesus and his sacrifice, God is always present as a loving Father, not an angry judge. Christians know that God is always with them and knows all their concerns and troubles. Christians know that they can always bring their cares and concerns to God in prayer, and God will listen to them. Christians know that even though God is everywhere, his message of forgiveness can never be found in worship of false gods who live in one particular place or another. We can never find God's love by chasing after spirits in rocks or trees or rivers. God's forgiveness can be found in only one place--in his Word. In the Bible God shows us Jesus, our only hope of forgiveness and heaven. To find a loving God, look in the only place where he can be found--his Word--and he will bless you through that Word.