2020 has been a year like no other in living memory.
Oh, there have been plenty of years of turmoil, unrest and danger throughout history.
But the events of those years tend to be localised to one region, one country, or at most, a couple of countries at war.
You could be forgiven for succumbing to fear, depression, frustration, anxiety, and any number of other unhealthy responses.
But it doesn’t need to be that way…
“What is man that you are mindful of him? The son of man that you care for him?” So asks the Bible in several places.
Indeed, what is man that God should spare him a second thought? Is man a miniature version of God, with all the qualities and all the abilities of God Himself – just at a reduced level?
After all, the Bible does say that God made man in His image. So, are we all ‘mini-gods?’
Or is humanity so vastly different to God that it is hard to find any point of similarity between the two? For the Bible also says that God is not a man that He should lie, or a son of man that he should change is mind.
The reality is that there is a vast, immeasurable gulf between us and God. If we could picture it, it would be like comparing a grain of sand to Mt Everest.
Except that you could quantify the difference between a grain of sand and Mt Everest. You can’t quantify the infinite difference between God and man.
And yet, God chooses to do His work through us weak, foolish, and flawed human beings.
Moses was a great man. No doubt about it. In the Bible story, Moses was one of the greatest.
After a difficult start (read Exo 2:1-10), he grew up surrounded by the enormous wealth and power of Egypt. But it seems he never forgot his Hebrew roots, for he came to the aid of one of his own people by killing an Egyptian who was beating one of his people.
Jesus was pretty critical of the Pharisees for their inability to get beyond debates about the Law of Moses to see what the Scriptures were really all about.
He told them over and over again that they were missing the point. “You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me,” He told them [John 5:39]. And “… For if you believed Moses, you would believe me; for he wrote of me” [John 5:46].
We can look down our collective noses at the Pharisees for their stubborn ignorance. But, of course, we have the benefit of the New Testament to help us understand what the Old Testament was all about.
And still we get it wrong so often…