Often when we look at art we see depictions of God as “the Ancient One” or an aged being with a flowing white beard. This imagery can evoke the idea of an eternal changeless God and all wise God. However, we seem to smuggle in the idea of a old man stuck in his ways. On the Day of Atonement over many millenia, countless elders have recited these amazing words:
“Come now, and let us reason together,”
Says the Lord,
“Though your sins are like scarlet,
They shall be as white as snow;
Though they are red like crimson,
They shall be as wool. Isaiah 1:18
God is not an old man stuck in his ways. He wishes to enter into relationship with us. He wishes to dialogue with us. “Come let’s reason, let’s wrestle, let’s argue. Let’s journey together.”
God is not a God so set in his way that he will not bend. He pleads with us. He says, “Come let’s talk this out. Though your sins are in fact sins. I will do the impossible. I can forgive. All you have to do is ask” (paraphrase). It is on the cross that Jesus bends. He bends to the point of breaking all with the explicit purpose of doing the impossible. He forgives. He cleanses. He atones.
Today on this Day of Atonement, reflect on the Jesus and his sacrifice which restores us to God and makes us “at one” again.