Q: Since childhood I've been taught that God is kind of like a stern policeman, just waiting to punish us if we get out of line. But I'm beginning to wonder if this is the whole story. What is God really like? -- S.O'R.
A: The most important truth I can tell you is that God is far greater than any mental image you or I may have of Him. None of them is complete -- and they may even be wrong.
How, then, can we know what God is really like? We can only know for sure what God is like if He reveals Himself to us. Otherwise we're left to guess about God -- and our guesses can lead us down all kinds of false paths. The Bible speaks of those whose "thinking became futile. ... and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles" (Romans 1:21, 23).
But has God revealed Himself to us? Yes -- and He did this in a way that staggers our imagination: He became a man! That man was Jesus Christ, who was both fully God and fully man. Do you want to know what God is like? Look at Jesus Christ, for He was God in human flesh. In Him we see God in all of His love and mercy and power. The Bible says, "No one has ever seen God, but the one and only Son, who is himself God ... has made him known" (John 1:18).
This is why I urge you to turn to Jesus Christ and ask Him to come into your life. When you do, you'll discover that God isn't the harsh, angry person you thought He was. Instead, He loves you, and He wants to welcome you into His presence every day.
(Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.)(c)2017 BILLY GRAHAM DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.