Many fail to realize that “gods back then” (3000 or so years ago) nearly always were assumed to have “super-human” powers of one kind or another
but not beyond their geographical region.
Therefore, if person goes beyond that region, the smart thing to do was to respect, or get in tune with the god of that region.
For Jews, however, and later Christians, their worship of Jehovah, or God, was much more than that.
For more use the DOOR.
At first, Jews may have seen Jehovah as a regional “mountain god” since the children of Abraham were in, or had roots in, the land of Israel. But God’s revealed word to them declared there was much more to God than that. Today, after studying the Bible, we attach words to him such as all-powerful or omnipotent, omnipresent, and all-knowing or omniscient. Our holy book in fascinating detail¹ goes much farther, declaring that his “region” of dominion is everywhere! Often such fact is painted in broad strokes, but it’s not fantasy.
At a recent 6 AM MPH meeting (our weekly local men’s prayer hour²), our leader set before us some significant passages about the “wide” presence, the observing power, the creative power, and concern of God, who made all Jews and Chriastians, everyone everywhere, in his image. I present these passages here for possible use in your prayer or devotional time. (The caps. are in the ESV text; the boldface is mine.)
Psalm 139: 7-10
“Where shall I go from your spirit? or where shall I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there! If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me.”
” ‘Am I a God at hand,’ declares the LORD, ‘and not a God far away? ‘Can a man hide himself in secret places so that I cannot see him?’ declares the LORD. ‘Do I not fill heaven and earth?’ declares the LORD.
“The God who made the world and everything in it, being Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in temples made by man, nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything. And he made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined allotted periods and boundaries of their dwelling place, that they should seek God, and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him. Yet he is actually not far from each one of us, for ‘In him we live and move and have our being…’ “
Using verses that express what we know and believe about God is a good way to balance out personal, or collective, prayer time. These verses underline that one God, the God of the Bible, is everywhere, behind, and in everything–and is especially concerned about and available to people who are created in his image.
Collecting, adding to, and reciting aloud these verses can enrich one’s prayer time.
¹ And the Bible is rich in descriptive content about God–especially if you look for it.
² Our group of a dozen or so men has for years met at 6 AM on Wednesdays, year around. When the “big hand hits 12” we start, not talking about praying, but praying until the big hand hits 12 again and we invade our favorite restaurant downtown (in Montrose, PA). If you want to learn more about this, contact our leader Dan at Dan@MontroseEFree.org, or register a comment at the bottom of a post.