Paul says those who worship and serve the creature rather than the Creator have “exchanged the truth about God for a lie.” That is how we all were before Jesus came to us. Now, in union with him, we live in the truth and that truth is Jesus himself.
However, we might still exchange the truth about God our Father for a lie. The lie is this: The Father doesn’t really love you. We may even see him as the enemy of our freedom and joy. So our hearts are closed to our Father because we think his heart is closed to us. This warped view of our Father may constantly disturb our anxious hearts.
Where do we find the truth concerning our Father? Jesus is the TRUTH of the Father’s heart towards us. For to see Jesus is to see his Father. Jesus is the new and living WAY into communion with his Father as our Father. Through him, we draw near with confidence sharing in Jesus own communion with his Father. Jesus is the LIFE and our life hidden with him in God. So with him we share in the life of his Father as dearly loved children. Yes, Jesus is the way and the truth and the life and we come to the Father through him.
So if the lies concerning the Father remain within us it is simply because we have taken our eyes off Jesus and lost connection with him. So let us always abide in Jesus. Then we see the love of our Father and rest in the high privilege of being his dearly loved children in union with The Son.
The Father of Jesus always relates to his unique Son in joyful love. And he relates to us in the same way. Jesus said his Father loves us just as he loves his unique Son. In union with the Son, we are now dearly loved children drawing near to Abba. In the Spirit, we enjoy the Father’s nearness to us and our dearness to him.
Unfortunately, many Christians often have a distorted view of our Father. While they imagine Jesus as the one who loves us, they may see the Father as hesitant towards them. Indeed, they may see the Father as distant at best and furious at worst. It is as if Jesus pleads with the Father to put up with them perhaps even against the Father’s desire. They fear that behind Jesus, the Father is actually distant and dark, even sinister.
Jesus told us that when we see him we see his Father. All the love the Son has for us is actually the Father’s love for us. The two are one in everything including love for us. The streams of love that come to us through Jesus flow from a fountain of love in the Father’s heart. And the Father has poured his own love into our hearts by the Spirit he has given us.
With Jesus and his Father in full view, we need to see that the greatest sorrow we can bring to our Father’s heart is not to believe that he loves us. And the greatest joy we can bring to Jesus’ heart is to rest assured in his Father’s love.
When Jesus first appears for baptism, the Father declares his love for him. A voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.” All through the rest of the story we see that Jesus really is the joy of the Father’s heart as dearly loved Son. Towards the end, Jesus says to his Father, “I in them and you in me – so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me” (John 17:23). We are united to Jesus so whatever is true of him is now true of us. So, the Father loves you “even as” he loves his own son. And we now experience his love because “God’s love [i.e. the Father’s love] has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us” (Romans 5:5). The streams of love flow to us from the fountain of love in the Father’s heart.
We need to linger long over the Father’s love to appreciate its wonder. Consider, the Father’s love that stretches backwards into his eternal decision to adopt us as children in his dearly loved Son. Contemplate, the Father’s love that reaches downwards into time through his Son and in his Spirit. Mull over the Father’s love that cost him dearly, as he did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us in order to fulfil his purposes of love for us. Ponder the Father’s love that adopted us as his own children so that we now say “How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God…” (1 John 3:1). Yes, we do need to linger long over the Father’s love so that we actually live in his love.
Through Jesus, the triune God has actually opened himself to us. So as we fix our eyes on Jesus, we may know what God is like within his inner relations. All through the Jesus story, we see the three persons loving each other as the One living God. We see the dynamic interplay of Father with Son, Son with Spirit, Spirit with Father, Father and Son with Spirit, Spirit and Son with Father, Father and Spirit with Son. The God revealed through Jesus really is the living God who loves within himself.
However, we do not simply see all this as detached spectators; we actually share in the Triune communion. For through his Spirit, God brings us into union with Jesus so that his life and ours are inseparably entwined. Within this union, we share in Jesus’ communion with the Father by the Spirit. So, as T. F, Torrance says,” God has established an intimate two-way relation between himself and us and us and himself, making himself accessible to us and giving us entry into the inner fellowship of God’s life by allowing us to share in God’s own eternal Spirit”.
So, in union with Jesus, we are drawn into fellowship with a deeply personal, indeed three-personal God. Each of the undivided three relating to us in special and distinct ways. This is at the heart of what it means to know God and to enjoy communion with Him.