About a month ago I wrote a post “Praising God in 140 Characters or Less. The object of that post was to point out that we want everything “quick, fast, and in a hurry”, including our time and relationship with God. In my study of Scripture I do find that God did and does things “quick, fast, and in a hurry” too. In the Genesis account in the bible it says that “God said” and things happened instantly:
Genesis 1:2-3 (HCSB)2 Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness covered the surface of the watery depths, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface of the waters.3 Then God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light.
Genesis 1:6-7 (HCSB)6 Then God said, “Let there be an expanse between the waters, separating water from water.”7 So God made the expanse and separated the water under the expanse from the water above the expanse. And it was so.
Genesis 1:9 (HCSB)9 Then God said, “Let the water under the sky be gathered into one place, and let the dry land appear.” And it was so.
Genesis 1:11 (HCSB)11 Then God said, “Let the earth produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and fruit trees on the earth bearing fruit with seed in it according to their kinds.” And it was so.
There are more examples in Genesis Chapter 1 but you get the message.
With Man However Things Were Different
Genesis 1:26-27 (HCSB)26 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness. They will rule the fish of the sea, the birds of the sky, the livestock, all the earth, and the creatures that crawl on the earth.”27 So God created man in His own image; He created him in the image of God; He created them male and female.
It sounds almost the same as with the other things that God created instantly when He spoke doesn’t it? But let’s go to Genesis Chapter 2 for more detail.
Genesis 2:7 (HCSB)7 Then the LORD God formed the man out of the dust from the ground and breathed the breath of life into his nostrils, and the man became a living being.
Genesis 2:21-22 (HCSB)21 So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to come over the man, and he slept. God took one of his ribs and closed the flesh at that place.22 Then the LORD God made the rib He had taken from the man into a woman and brought her to the man.
Yes He could have made man by just speaking it as he did with the earth and the things in it and it would have been so instantly. He didn’t do that with man however he actually formed man from the dust of the ground that He simply spoke into existence. Then he created woman by actually performing surgery on the man Adam.
When God created man He did so in a manner that developed a personal relationship with him. It wasn’t instant.
The only place in Scripture where I can find God doing something instantly with regard to His relationship to man is in salvation. Which is both instant and free:
Romans 10:9-10 (HCSB)9 If you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.10 One believes with the heart, resulting in righteousness, and one confesses with the mouth, resulting in salvation.
Yes God performed and continues to do miracles that make instant changes in circumstances, to benefit those of us who have accepted that gift of a personal relationship with God through His Son Jesus. That gift was given by God’s grace because He wants that relationship with us. but where the relationship has already been established.
Our Response Should be more than Praising God in 140 Characters or Less Although We Can
Scripture provides examples and instructs us to wait, and spend time with God and in spending time with Him we are blessed by Him.
Psalm 25:5 (HCSB) Guide me in Your truth and teach me, for You are the God of my salvation; I wait for You all day long.
Psalm 37:7 (HCSB) Be silent before the LORD and wait expectantly for Him; do not be agitated by one who prospers in his way, by the man who carries out evil plans.
Isaiah 33:2 (HCSB) LORD, be gracious to us! We wait for You. Be our strength every morning and our salvation in time of trouble.
Lamentations 3:26 (HCSB) It is good to wait quietly for deliverance from the LORD.
Micah 7:7 (HCSB) But I will look to the LORD; I will wait for the God of my salvation. My God will hear me.
Matthew 6:6 (HCSB)6 But when you pray, go into your private room, shut your door, and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
Luke 6:12 (HCSB) During those days He went out to the mountain to pray and spent all night in prayer to God.
Acts 1:14 (HCSB) All these were continually united in prayer, along with the women, including Mary the mother of Jesus, and His brothers.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-19 (HCSB)16 Rejoice always!17 Pray constantly.18 Give thanks in everything, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.19 Don’t stifle the Spirit.
James 5:16 (NKJV)16 Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.
My favorite Scripture for not Being Instant
Isaiah 40:31 (NKJV) But those who wait on the LORD Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint.
Yes we can find ways to pray and praise God instantly in 140 characters or less and yes God will hear and be pleased with your praise and prayer if it’s done in sincerity and love for Him. But if He took the time to form you from the dust and breath life into you and then instantly save you and give you eternal life, shouldn’t we spend more than 140 characters, or 30 seconds of prayer and praise in thanking Him?
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Donald Jacobs is an ordained minister with the spiritual gift of teaching. He is the Associate Pastor of a non-denominational church in Los Angeles, CA.