Through course after course, college professors warned us students against using absolutes in our papers. No always, no nevers! What those instructors were teaching us (themselves using absolutes) was never to use them! If students ignored their advice, their papers would certainly (if not always) be flawed, their theses impossible to prove. Life, it seems, holds exceptions to most rules. About testing we were told never to choose the answer to multiple choice questions that held those banned words. Teachers told us those answers would always be wrong!
Yet, the Bible is replete with absolutes. God, Himself, stands alone as the absolute Ruler, Designer and Creator of the universe. What comfort passages such as: “Lo, I am with you always.” (Matthew 28:20) and “I will never leave nor forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5) bring to us. God’s Word as absolute, remains faithful, true and fail proof. Over thousands of years, men and women of faith have tested God’s Word and found it to be reliable and incapable of error. He who made the world and set our planets into orbit, surely could be trusted to keep His promises!
He and His Word stand supreme. “I am the Lord and beside me there is no other.” (Deut. 4:35) Again, God’s Words stated as absolute, refute legitimate contenders. Those who say God’s existence can not be proven, stand helpless trying to prove otherwise. Naysayers cannot prove He is not behind the scenes setting the rhythms and courses that govern our lives. Laws of Physics hold fast with consequences if we try to defy them.
We look to the sky, to the Earth around us and even to ourselves and see the intricate ways our bodies are created to recover, to renew microscopic cells within us. We see handiwork beyond anything man has been able to duplicate. For everything we see has been made out of “nothing”, out of unseen elements. (Hebrews 11:3) His creation defies our understanding and brings us to our knees in awe.
When man combines some of the components that have been already provided by God and produces a substance practical for daily living with useful everyday applications, we applaud. But, let us remember, a loving Creator had already placed everything we needed inside our soil, inside herbs and plants and other organic matter waiting to be discovered, combined and put to good use. Chemicals have been manipulated in laboratories and have resulted in placing helpful medicine on our shelves. The Periodic Table listing elements continues to grow as scientists pursue their discoveries. God must look down and smile watching man follow His treasure hunt.
Another statement, “I am the Lord; I change not!” (Malachi 3:6) provides such peace knowing that God’s love for mankind (unlike ours) never leaves us due to finicky emotions. Partners can leave, friendships can be stretched and finally break, even parents can turn and walk away when their children disappoint them; but God remains faithful. He offers the absolute love we long for as His creation. What did He do when we as humans disappointed Him and failed to come up to His expectations? He provided a way of escape, a way of covering our transgressions, a way to gain entrance back into His sinless, singular presence. God placed His Son, spotless and totally devoted to the Father’s plan and purposes, to hang before man dying and bleeding as the perfect sacrifice in our place. Our sins would not have to try to find other remedies. Once again, man would gain access to approaching God.
Are there sins we have committed which will not be forgiven? Never! Is God’s love available and free? Absolutely! We can embrace the absolutes God has presented in Himself (omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent, to name a few) and can receive the forgiveness Jesus earned for us at Calvary. This act was and remains enough. Truly, surely, absolutely and always. Nothing can take away that assurance of faith. We can agree that time and change affect us all, but God says He Himself changes not and He is the constant now, operating outside of time. He is the ultimate, the One absolute that has stood the test, confronting and confounding those who still refuse to see and believe.
(To view other religious stories and photos refer to the Friday, September 6, 2013 print or e-edition of the Picayune Item.)