My Favorite Two Words

picture by Laura Sotka

picture by Laura Sotka

I am so glad God is the Almighty. He is awesomely powerful. He can do anything. When I consider who He is and what He is like I slip into a reverent attitude of worship. I can’t help myself. I begin to meditate on His splendor, His majesty, His sovereignty, and His love for me… and I end up thinking of my two favorite words.

You find these words throughout the Word of God. From Old Testament to New, we constantly see them. The story of the scriptures is simple. Mankind is a rebellious, self-willed people but God loves them enough to go to extremes to show them His love and His plan to save their souls, bless them, and fellowship with them for eternity.

Did you catch my favorite two words in that last sentence? Read it again. The two words that catch all of God’s grace and mercy – all of His miraculous actions – all of His loving power toward us is…. But God…!

The word “but” is used in a sentence to express a contrast with the immediately preceding idea… and when God is involved the contrasts are startling.

“As for you, you meant evil against me, But God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people alive.       Genesis 50:20

Then he became very thirsty, and he called to the Lord and said, “You have given this great deliverance by the hand of Your servant, and now shall I die of thirst and fall into the hands of the uncircumcised?” But God split the hollow place that is in Lehi so that water came out of it. When he drank, his strength returned and he revived. Therefore he named it En-hakkore, which is in Lehi to this day.        Judges 15:18–19

David stayed in the wilderness in the strongholds, and remained in the hill country in the wilderness of Ziph. And Saul sought him every day, But God did not deliver him into his hand.        1 Samuel 23:14

As sheep they are appointed for Sheol; Death shall be their shepherd; And the upright shall rule over them in the morning, And their form shall be for Sheol to consume So that they have no habitation. But God will redeem my soul from the power of Sheol, For He will receive me. Selah.        Psalm 49:14–15

They devise injustices, saying, “We are ready with a well-conceived plot”; For the inward thought and the heart of a man are deep. But God will shoot at them with an arrow; Suddenly they will be wounded.        Psalm 64:6–7

My flesh and my heart may fail, But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.        Psalm 73:26

And He said to them, “You are those who justify yourselves in the sight of men, But God knows your hearts; for that which is highly esteemed among men is detestable in the sight of God.        Luke 16:15

this Man, delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put Him to death. “But God raised Him up again, putting an end to the agony of death, since it was impossible for Him to be held in its power.        Acts 2:23–24

But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.        Romans 5:8

But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong,        1 Corinthians 1:27

I planted, Apollos watered, But God was causing the growth.        1 Corinthians 3:6

whereas our more presentable members have no need of it. But God has so composed the body, giving more abundant honor to that member which lacked,        1 Corinthians 12:24

For even when we came into Macedonia our flesh had no rest, but we were afflicted on every side: conflicts without, fears within. But God, who comforts the depressed, comforted us by the coming of Titus;        2 Corinthians 7:5–6

For indeed he was sick to the point of death, But God had mercy on him, and not on him only but also on me, so that I would not have sorrow upon sorrow.        Philippians 2:27

Here are a few of the contrasts I’ve been thinking about:

I was lonely                                       But God                     is my friend

I was hungry                                     But God                     provides all I need

I am prone to sin                              But God                     forgives and forgets

I was confused                                 But God                     has a plan

I hated so much                               But God                     loves so much

I make plans                                     But God                     directs my steps

I was lost                                            But God                     searched me out

I ran                                                    But God                     pursued

I was unlovable                                But God                     loved me anyway

I was God’s enemy                          But God                     died for my sin

I deserved death                              But God                     gave me life

I deserved hell                                  But God                     made a way to heaven

I am tempted                                     But God                     gives me a way to escape

I feel inadequate                              But God                     provides everything I need

I was dead in my sin                        But God                     gives me life in Christ

I was separated from God               But God                     brought me near

I was troubled                                   But God                     gave me peace

I deserve nothing                             But God                     gives everything

I was outside His family                  But God                     adopted me into His family

I had no purpose                              But God                     sends me out

I face enemies                                  But God                     is on my side

I had no love for others                   But God                     showed what love looks like

I felt isolated                                      But God                     brings fellowship

I am not                                              But God                     is

There is no other god                      But God                     period, exclamation… Amen

Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved),        Ephesians 2:3–5

Think about it…

2 Comments

  • Bob Tamasy says:

    Very interesting – I like it, Len.
    However, for non-believers, those words one day will have entirely different meaning – and significance – won’t they?
    Standing before God, after spending a lifetime of denying Christ, when the Lord turns them away, they will say, “But, God!”
    For religious folks who had gone through the motions, but never had a true relationship with Christ, when told, “Depart from me, I never knew you!”, they will also respond, “But…God!”
    Glad we won’t be among them!

    • Len Allen says:

      Great thoughts – and I’m also glad we won’t have to say those wonderful words in that terrible way.
      I appreciate you sharing. You and I would probably never have met BUT GOD put us together for a great friendship.

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