Reflection: Jesus caused a scandal by modeling and teaching an intimate relationship with God, whom he called ‘Father’ (Mark 14:36). The religious leaders of his time thought Jesus to be outrageous, presumptive and scandalous (John 5:17-18). The reality was, of course, that Jesus was demonstrating something that was profoundly true.
No other religion features such a level of intimacy with God.
As a theologian, it occurred to me that almost every heresy that has afflicted the church has the inevitable outcome of turning God into someone who is distant and unknowable––a false god who hides behind the mask of a thousand different religions.
When Jesus visited his friends at Bethany, three things happened: Martha got so busy she didn’t have time to be with Jesus; Mary sat in Jesus’ presence and anointed his feet with perfume; and Judas worried about money. Only one of them realized that they were made for intimacy with God.
Which are you?
Prayer: Dear Father, the world may ignore and scorn you, but I choose to call you “Father.” I dare to do so at your invitation––and it is the greatest privilege of my life. In Jesus name. Amen.