The LORD is good to all,
and his compassion is over all that he has made.
Almighty and everlasting God, you hate nothing you have made and forgive the sins of all who are penitent: Create and make in us new and contrite hearts, that we, worthily lamenting our sins and acknowledging our wretchedness, may obtain of you, the God of all mercy, perfect remission and forgiveness; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
Book of Common Prayer
Call it a protest against bad theology, or whatever, but I have no interest whatsoever in any god who doesn’t have an intimate concern for every human being who has ever lived or ever will live. I have to add to that animals, as well. I cringe when we watch Nature or something of the sort, noting the precarious nature of life, even the given of carnivorous existence to survive. Thankfully I realize that it’s really all beyond me. My own hope is that animals such as cats and dog, and I’ll add horses for my wife will be resurrected to experience the love in any new creation life to come.
But given the devastation that is all too common in the world today, and really has been throughout the earth’s existence, I have a hard time just saying that in the end it doesn’t matter, that there’s no love that continues, that once we’re born we die and that’s the end. Even worse, actually far worse for me is the idea that is commonly considered truth, even if hushed, that the vast majority of human beings will be damned to eternal suffering in hell fire forever and ever. Count me out. Any god that is even distantly related to that, or as is said, actually allows that, some saying even causes that, I think is worse than the devil, and I want nothing at all to do with that god. Period.
But thankfully God is Jesus, and in Jesus we see something quite different. And I would argue that over the scope of the entire Bible we end up with something quite different. God does intimately care for all, even for those who are not likeable. God is God, so much larger than us, completely whole in every way. God is love through and through and everything else that is good through and through. Yes God hates evil, and does get angry. We see that in Jesus when he made a whip and drove the money changers with their animals out of the temple. God is ticked off too, and evildoers will thoroughly be held accountable. But judgment is ultimately not retributive but restorative. Again I think when we turn the pages of Scripture we’ll find somewhat so again and again, and especially through the entire reading that God deals in what ultimately amounts to persistent love with each and everyone. I like the saying that if anyone remains in hell, Jesus is close to them.
That’s the God I see in Scripture and in Jesus. I have no interest whatsoever in the least with any other god.