“Philip said to Jesus, “Lord, show us the Father and we will be satisfied” John 14:8
A few years ago, someone claimed to have solved a national mystery (again). After 24 years of continuous watching Loch Ness, Steve Feltham, a self-confessed monster hunter originally from Dorset, concluded that “Nessie” is nothing more than a particular kind of catfish, introduced into many British lakes by the Victorians.
Well, that settles it, then. Or does it? I doubt it, somehow. There are some questions that become a permanent feature of life and “Is there a Loch Ness monster?” is one of them. For every theory proposed, someone will shoot it down with a fresh one. We almost will the debate not to end.
The question “Does God exist?” perhaps falls into the same category. Some will answer with an outright “no”, others with an equally convinced “yes”, with plenty more hitting the many shades of the “don’t know” button. Even those who vote “yes” go on to offer a thousand and one differing ideas of who or what he, she or it is and is like. One school of thought, featuring in most of the major world faiths, holds that the only way of describing God is by stating what God is not.
It’s all very confusing; a complete mystery. In a sense, that’s the way it has to be. Despite all the amazing things devised and developed by the human mind, we have our limitations and defining God to the last detail is one of them.
The New Testament writer John gives us one of the best clues: “No one has ever seen God. The only Son, who is truly God and is closest to the Father, has shown us what God is like.” Fantastic. We don’t have to stand around for 24 years (or longer) hoping to capture a glimpse of something moving and so solve the mystery. We look at Jesus and he shows us all we need to know; we listen to him and he tells us all we need to hear.
I don’t know what books you’re reading at the moment in this wave of home time, but you could do worse than include the Gospel of John among them. You stand to end up with more than a theory; it could change your life.
In fact, that’s why he wrote it…