God desires us to come to Him. This is the essence! But we have this from Jesus of Nazareth in a context which, to this day, is a shock, a horror, and a tremendous offense to many:
All things have been handed over to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son decides to reveal him. Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke on you and learn from me, because I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and my load is not hard to carry.
Matthew 11:27-30 (NET)
So this most profoundly gentle and humble person, is the go-to guy for the God of all, for everyone.
Certainly I would never have believed this. I was born and raised in a family and of a people who have never believed this, and never had a reason to believe this, because of mass murderers and other flagrant evildoers with crosses on their books, buildings, swords, and shields. But there came a day that I asked God to make it clear to me that He is, and to lead me. He changed my mind, and caused me to believe and know that He is right here, everywhere, always. From then on I have asked and listened, and He has asked and spoken, and we have been together, by His power, sometimes against my own poorer judgements.
There certainly is enormously more. He has caused much to be written in the books called Old and New Testament; "Testament" is an old word for "Covenant", which is very close to the modern word "contract", i.e., a contract between God and others:
And in the same way he took the cup after they had eaten, saying, "This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood."
Luke 22:20 (NET)
But the covenant is not the book, it is not the words in the book, and it is not the totality or any subset of the things the words say. The covenant is agreement, to come to Him, to seek to learn His preferences and adopt them, to desire Him to change us for the better. And this is the message. He wants us to come to Him, and He is happy to create opportunity for all of us to do so.
And He also wants help.
Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age."
Matthew 28:19-20 (NET)
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© 2016 Jonathan E. Brickman
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