I really don’t know how it happened that God became this old guy with flowing white hair and beard laying on the clouds and watching everything we do and getting involved in every aspect of our lives. I don’t know if Michelangelo’s Sistene chapel was the first depiction of that persona or if he was just mirroring someone else. But it seemed to catch on and go from there. For many God is now a father figure who looks out for our every need.
I was pretty deeply involved in theology for more than a decade devouring perhaps a hundred books on the subject. As a result I have come to some personal conclusions about God (but who am I to even do that?). Since this is the week that I start on my 7th decade on this earth it is about time I penned my feelings in this arena. If not now when?
It is pretty clear that most theologians who gave us the biblical text perceived God as not a person. To most of them he was a spirit. It is more like God is a presence that is all around us than an actual person somewhere above us. The conceptual thing that makes the most sense to me is that he is life. In that vain he is not really a “he”or a she. Most of the messages attributed to God in the Christian Bible, and for that matter the Jewish Bible and the Koran, God’s messages are about getting along with one another and appreciating the life that God has given us. Don’t Kill, don’t be jealous, love God, don’t adore/love stuff, and the rest. They are all about setting the right priorities in your life and simply living in peace and love with everyone else in God’s creation.
God just seems to be all about life.
Personally I have come to see God as the keeper of life. In science we have progressed eons beyond where they were two-thousand years ago. Almost everything that surrounds us today would have been considered a miracle in those times. The past century alone has brought us out of the dark ages of medicine. We have now mapped DNA and that will probably bring even more knowledge beyond our current imagination in the coming years.
But one thing we have been unable to do is to create life where there was none before. To me, that is God’s domain. He is the keeper of life. The Star Wars movies, of which I am a big fan called it the “force”. To me the force is the essence of life that comes only from God.
I don’t expect or even want any of you to agree with me on this. I made this study and the resulting conclusions for my own benefit. I needed to more fully understand my perception and relationship with my creator. Did I get it right? I pretty much doubt it but I don’t think anyone else has it right to any degree either. The concept of God is just too complex for our puny human minds.
Next Sunday I will delve into what I see being the keeper of life means…. and maybe more importantly what it doesn’t mean.