The sermon texts are from the current series of pericopes of the Protestant German Church, Series IV
„Am I only a God nearly,“ declares the LORD, “and not a God far away? Can anyone hide in secret places so that I cannot see him?”, declares the LORD. “Do not I fill heaven and earth?”
A few weeks ago, my wife's niece visited us with her two young children. Lovely days! We were able to follow the return journey to southern Germany via the "live location" of WhatsApp. With my Smartphone we could see the cars position. We saw which way they took and which short cut. After two hours we knew: they had arrived home. Everything was ok.
We thanked God!
The family had arrived their home. We knew it. Google knew it, too. Facebook knew it, too. And of course God! Or should God know less than the big "Big Five" Microsoft, Apple, Google, Amazon and Facebook together?
I was surprised the science journalist Ranga Yogeshwar said in his TV show "Quarks" (WDR broadcast from 15.5.18 "Social Media - How powerful Facebook really is"): Facebook is having 2.2 billion worldwide users. That's a quarter of the world's population! Can you imagine what quantity of data the “Big Five” are available? And which information we do pass on with the internet day after day? What I do reveal? What the "Big Five" know about me? The EU General Data Protection Regulation GDRP will get more security and transparency, many people hope.
I will be careful to share my data. So many things - I concede it - my imagination climb over. Just like the word of God Jeremiah has to say. There were self-proclaimed prophets at the time who were trying to pull a fast one on them. These prophets preached without really knowing God. In contrary: they were bad people. They kept people away from living with God.
God says: I am omniscient and omnipotent. Do not think that I do not see that! I hear the lies of these prophets. What they say is a flash in the pan, the words are limp. Very different, says God, is His Word (Jer 23:29) “Doesn´t My word burn like a fire? the LORD asks. Is it not like a mighty hammer that smashed the rock to pieces?” God wants people to looking for HIM and his powerful word. We should look for Jesus Christ and not look to the wrong prophets.
Google knows what I'm looking for. Microsoft knows which Apps I like to use. Amazon knows which books I am interested. Facebook knows about my friends and their friends. Apple knows my favorite movies. What God knows about me? God is knowing all about me. HE even knows my thoughts. HE knows my heart. HE is knowing me completely:
Ps. 139, 1 – 4: “O Lord, You have examined my heart and know everything about me. You know when I sit or stand. When far away You know my every thought. You chart the path ahead of me, and tell me where to stop and rest! Every moment, You know where I am. You know what I am going to say before I even say it.”
Is that scary or does it comfort you? It comforts me. I know that I live by the grace of Jesus Christ. All my absurd thoughts and all unnecessary words God's mercy is laying on. It is very often very difficult to trust the powerful "big five". But I can and I will trust the almighty God! HE knows my most intimate data, my heart, my thoughts. I can not hide it from him. I do not even try to hide it. Because they are in best hands. I trust in him. HE knows me like the back of his hand.
Jesus Christ invites everybody to trust him completely (John 5:24): “I tell you certain that everyone who hears my message and has faith in the one who sent me has eternal life and will never be condemned. They have already gone from death to life.”
Those who trust in Jesus Christ need not to be afraid. I trust in HIM, who is filling heaven and earth.