Building One Another

E. Stanley Ott


March 2, 2010

Dear Friend,

When I was in seminary I made an appointment with one of my professors and asked the question, "Do you believe that God is both personal and infinite?"  The answer I was given was, "No, I do not believe there is evidence to warrant that!"

Clearly anyone's answer to that question will depend upon the basis of what is believed.  If the Bible is simply a collection of symbolic stories as was the popular view in those days then it is easy to understand the professor's reply.

If on the other hand, the Bible is a collection of the writings of credible witnesses concerning the nature of God and God's intersection with human experience then one would have a reliable reason to reply, "Yes! God is both infinite and personal."

For example, when David entrusts the building of the temple to his son, Solomon, he prays, "Yours, O LORD, are the greatness, the power, the glory, the victory, and the majesty; for all that is in the heavens and on the earth is yours; yours is the kingdom, O LORD, and you are exalted as head above all." I Chronicles 29:11*

While such a text doesn't use the word "infinite," that is very much the picture of God we are offered.

When John reports Jesus' reaction to the weeping of Mary over the death of her brother, Lazarus, he says, "Jesus began to weep!" That is about as personal as you can get!

The Lord we worship is indeed infinite and eternal and is also One who cares deeply for you!

"I have loved you with an everlasting love." Jeremiah 31:3

With joy - E. Stanley Ott
Copyright 2010 E. Stanley Ott
*Scripture from the NRSV