March 22 I Tuesday
“The LORD was very sad that He had made human beings on the earth. His heart was filled with pain.” —Genesis 6:6 (NIRV)
Sometimes, we may think that God is so omnipotent and untouchable that nothing troubles Him. He is, after all, the sovereign, all-seeing God who knows everything and is capable of anything. God, however, is not emotionally detached from our world or from His people. Scripture makes it very clear that God has feelings too.
It is important to realize that God knows and understands completely what we are feeling—the good and the bad. As Christians, we come to know and relate to God as a Person with feelings, One who loves, hates, grieves, laughs, feels anger and compassion, just as we do. This is not to say our emotions and those of God are the same. Our emotions tend to cloud our judgment, because our sinful natures have corrupted them. But God has no sin, and therefore His emotions are incorruptible.
There is a great variation between human anger and divine anger. Human anger is volatile, subjective and often out of control. God’s anger is rooted in divine justice and is perfectly righteous and predictable, never capricious or malicious. All of God’s emotions are rooted in His holy nature and are always expressed sinlessly. God’s compassion, sorrow and joy are perfect expressions of His Perfect Being. Jesus’s anger at the synagogue leaders when He healed a man on the Sabbath (Mark 3:1-6), and His love for the rich young ruler who rejected Him (Mark 10:17-22) were perfectly motivated responses of His divine nature.
God’s ways have been recorded for us in terms that we can understand and relate to. His wrath and anger toward sin are real and His compassion for sinners is steadfast and genuine. His works reveal His mercy and unending grace, but most of all, His love for His children is everlasting (Jeremiah 31:3) and unshakable (Romans 8:38-39). In contrast to the unreliability and instability of man’s sin-tainted emotions, God’s emotions are completely dependable and immutable as He is.
There are two amazing things to consider concerning God and emotions. Firstly, He understands our emotions, as He created us with the capacity to have them. Secondly, His own emotions continually flow from His perfection. God will never have a bad day, and He will never change His feelings toward His redeemed people. When we get anxious, afraid, sad, disappointed or angry, we need to remember that we are not alone. God is with us and will ease our hearts and our minds when we trust Him with what is troubling us. In times of joy, pleasure and celebration pleasing to God, we can know that He rejoices with us.
Prayer: Dear God, thank You for being a God with feelings. I am grateful that Your emotions are completely dependable and immutable as You are. Praise You!