Day 33: God as Father (238-242)
So Day 33 is JESUS DAY because Jesus lived to be 33!!
We continue to talk about how God has revealed Himself to us in TRINITY
THIS IS THE KEY THING!!
The Father is revealed BY THE SON
Later on, we will talk about how the Father and Son are revealed BY THE SPIRIT
Throughout the course of Israel’s history, God does reveal Himself LIKE A FATHER
Many religions may invoke their god as a father
In the beginning of Israel there is this HINT
God loves you LIKE A FATHER
It even says God loves LIKE A MOTHER
We will find out that Jesus revealed that God is FATHER in an UNHEARD OF SENSE
THIS IS SO IMPORTANT!!
So today is FATHER’S DAY
God is a Father not only in being a CREATOR
He is ETERNALLY FATHER in relation to His ONLY SON who is ETERNALLY SON only in relation to His FATHER
THIS IS SO IMPORTANT FOR US!!
So we will talk about God NOT ONLY analogously as Father
Comes from GOD’S FATHERHOOD
So really, God’s FATHERHOOD is not analogous
OUR NOTIONS of fatherhood is analogous to God’s FATHERHOOD
Paragraph 240 says, “Jesus revealed that God is Father in an unheard-of sense…”
That is what we want to focus on today
“...He is eternally Father…”
That is the DEEPEST IDENTITY of the Father
The DEEPEST IDENTITY of the Son is the Son
The DEEPEST IDENTITY of the Holy Spirit is the LOVE BETWEEN THE TWO OF THEM
GOD’S DEEPEST IDENTITY IS LOVE!!
We will say that a bunch of times
IT IS SO IMPORTANT!!
IT IS NO SMALL THING!!
To be able to ASSERT THIS
To be able to PROFESS THIS
To be able to ENTER INTO RELATIONSHIP WITH THIS GOD
MAN OH MAN!!
(Because Fr. Mike speaks so fast, I’m not sure I got this next sentence right so bear with me 😉)
So let’s right now in our common sonship
Because of what Jesus has done for us
We have the Holy Spirit within us so we SHARE IN THE DIVINE NATURE
We are able to call God OUR FATHER
So in this moment let's pray
Prayer by Fr. Mike: “Father in heaven, you have revealed your deepest identity, you revealed yourself to us through your Son and your Holy Spirit. You've called us. You've made us into your adopted children. And you are our adoptive Father. You've shared your nature with us. You've shared your divine life with us. And so we just rejoice in you. We give you thanks, we praise you. May you be glorified, may you be loved not just by others, not just by people throughout the world, but may you be glorified and may you be loved by us this day. We praise you Father. We love you. Amen”
THIS IS REMARKABLE!!
Let’s begin at the beginning…
Paragraph 238 says, “Many religions invoke God as ‘Father.’ The deity is often considered the ‘father of gods and of men.’”
And also He is the Father to the people of Israel since He is the Creator of the world
Even more than that, Israel is His first-born
So God reveals Himself in FATHERLY terms
In PARENTAL terms
Even in 2 Samuel 7:14 refers to God as “the Father of the poor, of the orphaned and the widowed, who are under his loving protection.”
THIS IS REALLY REMARKABLE!!
Paragraph 239 says, “By calling God ‘Father,’ the language of faith indicates two main things: that God is the first origin of everything and transcendent authority…”
God is the BEGINNING
EVERYTHING comes from God
That is one of the reasons God is, in so many ways, more an image of THE FATHER instead of a mother
That is one of the reasons God has revealed Himself
WHY God has done it this way is a mystery
We don’t know why God has revealed Himself primarily as Father than as mother
One of the explanations that have been offered is that God, as Father, creates OUTSIDE OF HIMSELF
A mother creates INSIDE OF HERSELF
So here’s God who creates EX NIHILO
Which means God creates OUT OF NOTHING
The world did not GESTATE INSIDE OF HIM
It was not PART OF HIM
It was created OUTSIDE OF HIMSELF
Kind of like how a male and female come together
That would be THEIR roles in this kind of way
That’s one of the ways we can kinda sorta begin to understand
“God is the first origin of everything and transcendent authority…”
Yes, He is the START OF IT ALL
He is NOT PART OF IT
He is OVER IT
At the same time he is immanent
Paragraph 239 continues, “And that he is at the same time goodness and loving care for all his children. God’s parental tenderness can also be expressed by the image of motherhood, which emphasizes God’s immanence, the intimacy between Creator and creature.”
This is one of our problems
We live in a broken world and can fight about ANYTHING
Yes, God has revealed Himself as FATHER
THAT IS NOT A SLIGHT ON MOTHERHOOD!!
Yes, there are times when the Lord says, “How long like a mother hen I wish to draw you to myself.” (Luke 13:34)
We human beings like to FIGHT over things that are important
We are not saying it’s not important
We can also say, “Ok God in what way have you revealed yourself and why? For what purpose?”
So one of the purposes in which God has revealed Himself as FATHER is because He has created US out of Himself LIKE A FATHER WOULD
AT THE SAME TIME…
Like a MOTHER…
“Which emphasizes God’s immanence, the intimacy between Creator and creature.”
Paragraph 239 continues to highlight the LIMITATIONS of analogy
The LIMITATIONS of language
Paragraph 239 says, “The language of faith thus draws on the human experience of parents, who are in a way the first representatives of God for man. But this experience also tells us that human parents are fallible and can disfigure the face of fatherhood and motherhood. We ought therefore to recall that God transcends human distinction between sexes. He is neither man nor woman: he is God.”
THAT IS SO IMPORTANT FOR US!!
Fr. Mike has talked to so many people who say things like, “I have a tough time relating to God as Father because of my broken relationship with my father.”
“The wounds that my father inflicted on me and my mom and our family…”
It is helpful to recognize the last sentence of Paragraph 239, “God also transcends human fatherhood and motherhood, although he is their origin and standard: no one is father as God is Father.”
Someone told Fr. Mike, “Lean into this.”
If YOU have a good father in your life, LEAN INTO THAT
ALL of the GREAT QUALITIES in your father are PERFECT in GOD THE FATHER 🤯 🤯 🤯
If you had a rough dad who maybe was distant, cruel, or even evil…
You can see in that evil the FLIP SIDE
You almost have to look at it like a NEGATIVE IMAGE
For all that evil that father may have brought into your life…
GOD THE FATHER IS OPPOSITE TO THAT!!
It might not be easy
BUT IT IS REALLY IMPORTANT!!
Not only when it comes to our personal healing
Also when it comes to what FATHERHOOD IS SUPPOSED TO BE
All of our notions of fatherhood COMES FROM GOD WHO TRULY IS FATHER
They ALL fall short
God is the STANDARD
NO ONE IS FATHER AS GOD IS FATHER
Paragraph 240 says, “Jesus revealed that God is Father in an unheard-of sense: he is Father not only in being Creator; he is eternally Father in relation to his only Son, who is eternally Son only in relation to his Father.”
The DEEPEST IDENTITY of God is TRINITY
WHAT He is, WHO He is, in His OWN BEING before what He does
That is one of the keys
Paragraph 241 says, “For this reason the apostles confess Jesus to be the Word: ‘In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.’”
This is VERY CLEAR at the very beginning of John’s Gospel
The early Christian Faith professed that Jesus ETERNALLY IS ONE WITH GOD
THE SECOND PERSON OF THE TRINITY!!
WAS GOD IN THE BEGINNING!!
THAT IS VERY VERY IMPORTANT!!
JESUS WAS WITH GOD AND WAS GOD!!
Once more let’s talk about the Niceno-Constantinopolitan Creed
We should all say that at least twice a day 😃
The Council of Nicaea in 325 AD and The Council of Constantinople in 381 AD
The expression given to us as we formulate EVERY SUNDAY
Paragraph 242, “The Only Begotten Son of God, born of the Father before all ages. God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, consubstantial with the Father.”
There is hardly a way we can emphasize MORE CLEARLY that God is ETERNALLY TRINITY
ETERNALLY FATHER SON AND HOLY SPIRIT!!
We will find out that where one Person of the Trinity is…
Where one Person of the Trinity acts…
THEY ALL ARE!!
THEY ALL ACT!!
THAT IS REMARKABLE!!
What it means for you and me right now in this moment is that we pray and ask the Holy Spirit to come…
HELP US TO HEAR…
HELP US TO UNDERSTAND…
HELP US TO LISTEN…
HELP US TO MOVE FORWARD…
And that means that The Father is ALSO WITH US
We pray to the Son and ask Jesus to be with us and present us to the Father
We ask Jesus to HAVE MERCY ON US
And the Father is there with His Holy Spirit
Where one Person of the Trinity is, the ENTIRE TRINITY IS
Where one Person of the Trinity acts, THE WHOLE TRINITY ACTS
God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit LOVE YOU
THEY ARE WITH YOU RIGHT NOW!!
THEY ARE WITH FR. MIKE RIGHT NOW!!
SO WE TURN TO THEM RIGHT NOW!!
KNOW THAT YOU ARE NOT ALONE!!
THEY ARE WITH YOU!!
WE ARE WITH YOU!!
So let’s keep praying!!
Pray to the God who is with you right now
Pray for the people who are with you right now
Fr. Mike is praying FOR YOU!!
Please pray for Fr. Mike and for each other!!
I cannot WAIT to see you tomorrow!!
Scripture References & Reflections
- compiled by Andrew Adamany
Bible Translation - RSVCE
CCC 238 "Many religions invoke God as "Father". The deity is often considered the "father of gods and of men". In Israel, God is called "Father" inasmuch as he is Creator of the world."
"Do you thus requite the Lord,
you foolish and senseless people?
Is not he your father, who created you,
who made you and established you?
Remember the days of old,
consider the years of many generations;
ask your father, and he will show you;
your elders, and they will tell you."
"Have we not all one father? Has not one God created us?"
"Even more, God is Father because of the covenant and the gift of the law to Israel, "his first-born son".
"And you shall say to Pharaoh, ‘Thus says the Lord, Israel is my first-born son, and I say to you, “Let my son go that he may serve me”; if you refuse to let him go, behold, I will slay your first-born son.’ ”
"God is also called the Father of the king of Israel. Most especially he is "the Father of the poor", of the orphaned and the widowed, who are under his loving protection."
2 Samuel 7:12–14
"When your days are fulfilled and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your offspring after you, who shall come forth from your body, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build a house for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom for ever. I will be his father, and he shall be my son."
"Father of the fatherless and protector of widows
is God in his holy habitation.
God gives the desolate a home to dwell in;
he leads out the prisoners to prosperity;
but the rebellious dwell in a parched land."
CCC 239 "By calling God "Father", the language of faith indicates two main things: that God is the first origin of everything and transcendent authority; and that he is at the same time goodness and loving care for all his children.
"God's parental tenderness can also be expressed by the image of motherhood, which emphasizes God's immanence, the intimacy between Creator and creature.
"For thus says the Lord:
“Behold, I will extend prosperity to her like a river, and the wealth of the nations like an overflowing stream; and you shall suck, you shall be carried upon her hip, and dandled upon her knees. As one whom his mother comforts, so I will comfort you; you shall be comforted in Jerusalem."
"A Song of Ascents, of David.
O Lord, my heart is not lifted up,
my eyes are not raised too high;
I do not occupy myself with things
too great and too marvelous for me.
But I have calmed and quieted my soul,
like a child quieted at its mother’s breast;
like a child that is quieted is my soul.
O Israel, hope in the Lord
from this time forth and for evermore."
"The language of faith thus draws on the human experience of parents, who are in a way the first representatives of God for man. But this experience also tells us that human parents are fallible and can disfigure the face of fatherhood and motherhood. We ought therefore to recall that God transcends the human distinction between the sexes. He is neither man nor woman: he is God. He also transcends human fatherhood and motherhood, although he is their origin and standard: no one is father as God is Father."
"Thou hast said, “Seek ye my face.”
My heart says to thee,
“Thy face, Lord, do I seek.”
Hide not thy face from me.
Turn not thy servant away in anger,
thou who hast been my help.
Cast me not off, forsake me not,
O God of my salvation!
For my father and my mother have forsaken me,
but the Lord will take me up."
"But Zion said, “The Lord has forsaken me,
my Lord has forgotten me.”
“Can a woman forget her sucking child,
that she should have no compassion on the son of her womb?
Even these may forget,
yet I will not forget you."
"For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with might through his Spirit in the inner man, and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have power to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fulness of God."
CCC 240 "Jesus revealed that God is Father in an unheard-of sense: he is Father not only in being Creator; he is eternally Father in relation to his only Son, who is eternally Son only in relation to his Father"
"All things have been delivered to me by my Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and any one to whom the Son chooses to reveal him."
"My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. I and the Father are one.”
The Jews took up stones again to stone him. Jesus answered them, “I have shown you many good works from the Father; for which of these do you stone me?” The Jews answered him, “It is not for a good work that we stone you but for blasphemy; because you, being a man, make yourself God.” Jesus answered them, “Is it not written in your law, ‘I said, you are gods’? If he called them gods to whom the word of God came (and scripture cannot be broken), do you say of him whom the Father consecrated and sent into the world, ‘You are blaspheming,’ because I said, ‘I am the Son of God’? If I am not doing the works of my Father, then do not believe me; but if I do them, even though you do not believe me, believe the works, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me and I am in the Father.”
CCC 241 "For this reason the apostles confess Jesus to be the Word; as "the image of the invisible God"; as the "radiance of the glory of God and the very stamp of his nature".
"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God; all things were made through him, and without him was not anything made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it."
"He is the image of the invisible God, the first-born of all creation; for in him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. He is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning, the first-born from the dead, that in everything he might be pre-eminent. For in him all the fulness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross."
"but in these last days he has spoken to us by a Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world. He reflects the glory of God and bears the very stamp of his nature, upholding the universe by his word of power. When he had made purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become as much superior to angels as the name he has obtained is more excellent than theirs."
CCC 242 "Following this apostolic tradition, the Church confessed at the first ecumenical council at Nicaea (325) that the Son is "consubstantial" with the Father, that is, one only God with him. The second ecumenical council, held at Constantinople in 381, kept this expression in its formulation of the Nicene Creed and confessed "the only-begotten Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, light from light, true God from true God, begotten not made, consubstantial with the Father"
"I and the Father are one.”
"For to what angel did God ever say,
“Thou art my Son,
today I have begotten thee”?
“I will be to him a father,
and he shall be to me a son”?
And again, when he brings the first-born into the world, he says,
“Let all God’s angels worship him.”
Of the angels he says,
“Who makes his angels winds,
and his servants flames of fire.”
But of the Son he says,
“Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever,
the righteous scepter is the scepter of thy kingdom.
Thou hast loved righteousness and hated lawlessness;
therefore God, thy God, has anointed thee
with the oil of gladness beyond thy comrades."
“Thou, Lord, didst found the earth in the beginning,
and the heavens are the work of thy hands;
they will perish, but thou remainest;
they will all grow old like a garment,
like a mantle thou wilt roll them up,
and they will be changed.
But thou art the same,
and thy years will never end.”
But to what angel has he ever said,
“Sit at my right hand,
till I make thy enemies
a stool for thy feet”?