If God Is Mean and Demanding Then Why Is He So Joyful? Part 1

If most Christians were honest, they would admit to believing that God can be (to some degree) mean, demanding, vengeful, judgmental, hard to please, etc.

Why do many have these thoughts about God? Religious doctrine and influence.

Religion has many oughts, shoulds, musts, dos and do nots. Straight from the, often seen as, sacrosanct pulpit, come misunderstandings about who God really is and who we really are. The fruit of these religious traditionally based teachings are confusion, striving, guilt, fear, condemnation.

If believers could express how they really feel, they would acknowledge

  • how hard they try to please God
  • how they want to please God, even if they think they don’t
  • how they wonder what will God do next to punish them if they step out of line –  the line that religion draws in the sand

Have you ever thought about the narrow line religious Christianity or churchianity draws? Jesus did say, “narrow is the way”. He was not talking about morality. He was talking about Himself being the only way, and that way leads to incredible freedom and fullness. There is no narrowness in Him!

Okay, let’s just imagine you are right – God is mean and demanding. If that is even possibly true, then what do you do with the multiple references about a joyful God?

Seriously, can exuberant joy and meanness be expressed together? Not.

1.       God’s Joy At The Beginning

 God had crazy joy about us from the ‘get go’, even before the get go!

Proverbs 8:22-31 alludes to references of Jesus being with the Father before He began creation, Jesus’ involvement in creation, and how Jesus thought about us.

Here is Jesus’ crazy joy:

  • vs.30 “I was beside Him as a master craftsman, and I was daily His delight, vs.31 rejoicing always before Him, rejoicing in His inhabited world, and my delight was with the sons of men.”
  • vs 31 key Hebrew words elaborated –
    • I was rejoicing, laughing, joking, playing, celebrating, smiling always before Him
    • I was rejoicing, laughing, joking, playing, celebrating, smiling in His inhabited world
    • My delight, pleasure, enjoyment was with and in the sons of men (mankind)

I’m thinkin’ He really likes us, all of us! We are His celebration! We make Him smile and laugh! We are His joy! We bring Him pleasure!

By the way, did you notice there were no qualifiers for His joy over us? We did nothing to make Him rejoice over us – no performance, no service, no sacrifices, no rituals, no nothing. From the get go He was already rejoicing.

Now, why do we think God is so heavy??? Actually, God is ‘heavy’, if you will, in His lightness!

Most of us have never got that, because religion does not know that kind of ‘heavy’ God. Religiosity is the heavy one in all its requirements.

2.       God’s Presence Is Joy

In Your presence is fullness of joy. (Psalms 16:11)

Hebrew elaboration:

  • presence means ‘face’ – there is a face to face rejoicing that He has for us, no long distance joy with Him!
  • fullness  means satiety and abundance
  • joy means delight, exceeding joy, extremely, festival, gladness, happiness, joy, mirth, pleasure, rejoicing

Most Christians have been taught you need to do some stuff in order to get into His presence. This is a false teaching.

His presence is already in you. He is already face to face with you!

Why don’t we get that? Once again, we need to get free from religious tradition, doctrine, and churchianity that promotes a distant, demanding God.

The truth is He can’t get any closer to you or deeper in you than He already is.

You are in His presence right now. His exceeding joy, delight, mirth, pleasure, and festival is yours for the enjoying. You don’t have to earn it, manipulate, or please. Go for it!

Well spring of joy! ©Nancy TeagueThe well spring of joy is in you. Tap into it! Open up. Let ‘er rip!

It’s okay to dance, laugh, joke, smile, be deliriously joyful. He sure is. And He is over you! Be the same. Remember you are a reflection of Him.

Dig In

  • One of the keys to tapping into and releasing His joy is to be honest about your thoughts of Him being mean and demanding. He is not mad at you about this. He just wants those lies brought to the light. He will laugh those lies right out of you.
  • God has been joyful before the beginning. You began before the beginning in His joy and He has never stopped being joyful over you. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Now that is an eternal freeing truth!
  • Remember – it is impossible to be filled with joy and be mean at the same time. A human being can’t do that, and God can’t either! God is total joy. Ditch the ‘lie’ of meanness.

More joy points to come!

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15 responses to “If God Is Mean and Demanding Then Why Is He So Joyful? Part 1

  1. Amen. Awesome post! Spot on. We need to stop making God in our own grumpy bound-up image and be free to receive His love, joy and goodness. I don’t see heaviness, meanness and demanding in the list of the fruits of the Spirit (Gal.5:22-23). I think those are on the other list. 🙂

    Keep up the good word here, Nancy. You may just get some people free here! 🙂 Blessings.

    • Thanks Mel. I love your description of ‘grumpy bound-up’. Many sure think that of God. Actually that misconception makes us bound up!

      I am having wondrous discoveries about His joy that makes me fall even more in love with Him and experience His joy – which directly flows from grasping more and more how joyful He is over me, you, and everyone else! Can hardly wait to share more of the pure good news! My goodness He sure wants us free – and that comes from hearing the truth! Here’s to more truth about who He really is. And thanks for the good news of truth you are extolling through your blog. 🙂

      • You’re welcome. I would like to re-blog your post tomorrow if you don’t mind. I love how you put this. 🙂

      • That would be awesome! The more the truth gets out, and nothing but the truth, the happier we will be! The whole wide world (let alone believers) needs to hear how much delirious joy is readily available. 😉

  2. Reblogged this on In My Father's House and commented:
    Nancy Teague has some great things to say about our freedom and grace in Christ. All I can say to this post is amen and amen!
    Mel

  3. Nancy – glad to have found your blog. I think we are learning the same truths! I lived for decades in fear, guilt & condemnation. Now, at age 59, I am slowly learning how to let go of all those years of terrible indoctrination by modern American Christianity. Those who proclaim a God Who is Perfect Love Who has compassion on ALL He had made and yet constantly punishes His followers and tortures His enemies.

    “He is not mad at you about this. He just wants those lies brought to the light. He will laugh those lies right out of you.” Powerful insight.

    “You are in His presence right now. His exceeding joy, delight, mirth, pleasure, and festival is yours for the enjoying. You don’t have to earn it, manipulate, or please. Go for it!”

    I also treasure Steve McVey’s grace message. Are you familiar with:

    Thomas Talbott – http://www.thomastalbott.com/index.html

    Peter Hiett – http://www.tsdowntown.com/a-theology-of-relentless-love/articles/25-about-us/94-my-theological-journey

    Boyd Purcell – http://healingspiritualterrorism.com/summary_268.html

    Charles Slagle – http://www.sigler.org/slagle/comfort_and_hope.htm

    Eamon McMullen – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SDKUNeBtzA0&list=TLU1PX-HK6W_6QL0m26GJBpVne1qBpbh-p

    Grace upon grace to you – David

    • David,
      I’m so glad you were touched by this post on God’s incredible joy. Looks like we have had similar journeys with the religious institution’s fallen man gospel. To finally see the legalism that is attached to their distorted message of grace is quite the revelation. Then it takes several years to detox from all the requirements and expectations of religiosity/churchianity. I am so thankful He exposed this legalistic gospel and opened my eyes to the truth. It is indeed freeing!

      I have read several of Steve McVey’s books. The one titled, “52 Lies Told In Church Every Sunday and Why The Truth Is So Much Better”, was a real eye opener. How refreshing that he admits to teaching all those lies from the pulpit, and yet God knew just when to enable him to see the truth. Isn’t it restful to know that the Lord knows how to undo all the lies Steve taught to his parishioners? What a message McVey now proclaims!

      I am not familiar with the other authors you mentioned. Thanks for their names and internet sites. It is so encouraging to know the Lord is raising up many with the pure Good News. Truly, “how beautiful on the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who proclaims peace, who brings glad tidings of good things…” (Is 52:7) I am so thankful for the ‘beautiful feet’ that have brought this good news to me! God knew how and when to have them cross my path. Yay God!

      Fullness upon fullness to you, David, in your ongoing wondrous discovery of just how good He really is!

      Nancy

      • Thank you Nancy. I would really appreciate your views on the links if you have the time.

        Looking forward to your future posts!

        David

      • Dave, I will check them out in due time – and give you my thoughts. 🙂 Really appreciate more resources to consider. It takes the body of Christ to fully express Him! The key is to find those expressions that bring us into more wondrous awe of His kind intentions for us before time began! We surely need to get back to BEFORE the beginning. That is where the “WOW!” happens. 🙂
        Nancy

    • David, finally got through the articles and You Tube! Good stuff! Thomas Talbott’s excerpts from his book. “The Inescapable Love of God”, are well thought out. He clearly proves God’s universal reconciliation. Obviously men can be stupid and resist God’s unconditional love but His love will keep burning for those who refuse. I appreciated Purcell’s explanation of brimstone AKA sulfur – did not realize all the ‘benefits’! Slagle makes great points about Abraham’s call and God doing it all. So appreciated Hiett’s journey of revelation about God’s unconditional love and the misunderstanding many have had of God’s judgment. When you know truth it indeed makes you immovable. What a blessing to many the Lord released through the rejection he encountered by the institution. Then Eamnan’s You Tube teaching on innocence was good. It is certainly stated in scripture but it takes revelation to really see it. Isn’t it wonderful that God trumps religious traditions that cause blindness to truth. Keep opening eyes, Father!

      Thanks David for sharing those resources. So glad to see and hear that He has more than we probably realize, expounding the really good news.

  4. Hello! I have a little bit of a random question….see, I was wondering if God hates human beings? Like if there are humans that are walking this earth right now that he genuinely dislikes, hates, and disgust him…I was curious, so i asked google(lol) and Ive read some things where people actually believe that God hates some people, and some people believe that he Hates and Loves a person at the same time, which doesnt seem correct to me, and thinking about it worries me and the thought makes me soooooooo freaking saddddd so I wanted to get another opinion…again, sorry if this is a random question!

    • A great question! It might seem random but it actually is connected with this post on His overflowing joyful-Self.

      Your question is a very foundational one to knowing the one true God. This question answered in truth and with Truth will smack against the religious mindset of a conditional God. Those who think God hates some people, or has a love/hate relationship with people, are bound up in religious guilt, fear, and judgmentalism. They truly do not know Him, even though they are so sure they do! That is what is sooooo sad.

      You are right – a God who hates some people or loves/hates at the same time – is so NOT correct. It is actually a big fat lie!

      Many Christians can be quick to say God loves you unconditionally, but then immediately set up things to do in order to make sure He continues to love you unconditionally! What’s with that!? Grasping His unconditional love is probably the biggest truth about God that multitudes just can’t get. Because, we are taught/raised/wired to earn favor or love by performance, looks, abilities, smarts, good grades, good works, etc.

      Now to answer your great question.

      God is love. (1Jn 4:16) That sums up God. God even said He would be NOTHING without love – even if He removed mountains, had all knowledge, fed the poor… (1Cor 13:1-3) Just think about that – God in essence was saying He would be nothing, no thing, no where, da nada, zippo – without love! In other words – there would be no God. Even so we are ‘nothing’ without love.

      Then consider – God so loved the world that He gave His only Son…sending Him not to condemn the world but that the world be saved through His Son. (Jn 3:16,17) It does not say – God so tolerated the world or God so hated the world. If God loved the WORLD – not the religious people, not certain nationalities, not certain cultures, not certain socio-economic levels, not the morally upright, not the nice people, not just those who asked Jesus to be their Savior – then how does one reduce that kind of global love to include hate?

      God is eternal so that means His love is eternal. Then consider that this Global Eternal Love entered a huge global mess. A huge ‘people mess’ – weak, helpless, ungodly, sinners, enemies of God. In the midst of this mess He died for ALL, died for the ungodly, demonstrated His own love toward us, justified us by His blood, and reconciled us to God through His Son’s death, and abounded His grace towards all. In fact all these messy things are the reason why the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit! (2Cor 5:14 Rom 5:5-10,15) What a LOVER! He did not make us to live in messes, He made us from love, for love, and to love. He entered that global mess to restore us to our original identity, borne out of His eternal love.

      Ah, some will say “Jacob I loved, Esau I hated.” (Rom 9:13) Looks like God hates some, huh? Nope. The Greek word for ‘hate’ means having a relative preference for one thing over another. Certainly not our definition of ‘hate’. Now why would God prefer Jacob (a conniver, no less!)? Because Jacob valued his birthright, he valued his true identity, his heritage (in the promise of blessing). Esau, on the other hand, did not value his birthright. but valued more a pot of stew. Esau, at that time in his life, did not value his true identity. But isn’t it interesting that later in the story of Jacob and Esau – when Jacob finally saw his brother, after fleeing from him years earlier and was fearful of finally seeing him again face to face – here is what Jacob said – “I have seen your face as though I had seen the face of God, and you were pleased with me.” (Gn 33:10) Jacob’s encounter and revelation has a two-fold truth – 1) Jacob had lived in fear of his brother all those years – how mistaken he was, even as those are who live in fear of God – they misunderstand the relationship. Jacob was remembering how he had tricked Esau and had no clue that Esau had forgiven him. Even so many focus on their ‘bad’ stuff and don’t realize God has forgiven and taken away ALL sin. 2) if God really ‘hated’ Esau (as we define hate today), then why would Esau’s face look like the face of God?! Some today would conclude Esau is in hell. Wonder what those folks do with his face looking like the face of God – if they are aware of that passage?

      The context for this ‘hated Esau, loved Jacob’ phrase is Paul getting on the Jews for thinking they alone were God’s chosen people and the Gentiles were nothing. Paul chides them for their self righteous thinking. They obviously forgot the promise made to their forefather, Abraham, that in him ALL the nations would be blessed. Anyway, Paul gives them a hard time – ‘you have a problem with God bringing in the Gentiles, having mercy on them?’ (Rom 9:22-26) Paul’s makes clear there is no distinction between Jew and Greek. He concludes with the wondrous statement – “For God has committed all to disobedience, that He might have mercy on all.” (Rom 11:32) Then, it is as if Paul was overtaken with the truth of this magnanimous Mercy and expounds “Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out!” (Rom 11:33) To me it’s like shouting – “Who is this God!? What kind of love is this?! This is too marvelous for me to ever grasp!” Paul was undone!

      If God hates anything, it is sin that molests His children and the lies that deceive His children from knowing who they really are and who He really is. God is a God of truth and His truth sets us free, not condemns us. His truth is all about love. And His love is unconditional – that is why it bears all things, believes all things, endures all things, and love NEVER fails. (1Cor 13:7,8) Never is never! Selah

      We do well to remember that man is made in His image and likeness. (Gn 1:26,27) With that in mind, then why would God hate man, because then He would also have to hate Himself?! He would have to deny Himself! Just sayin’.

      Oh, one more thing. “There is no fear in love,but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment.” (1Jn 4:18) So, if you know someone who lives in fear of God, in fear of not pleasing Him, in fear of thinking He might hate them (even because of something they did ‘bad’) – then they do not understand and have not experienced His perfect UNCONDITIONAL love. It is freely given and freely poured out. Just remember, religion likes to limit the outflow of His love. 🙂

      My goodness, this is a long reply! Gosh, how can one have limited words about unlimited love! I could go on, but will yield to moderation at this time!
      Hope this helps.

      Hey, you know what, this topic would make a great post! Hmmm

      • Oh, the long reply is quite alright, I enjoyed every moment of it 😀
        Its a shame that people think like this, though, I used to kinda think like this until my eyes were opened(random, but have you heard of the blog called in my fathers house by mel wild? His blog, along with yours, truly has opened my eyes…) The fact that god hates us is a disgusting lie straight from the devil himself, and he will do ANYTHING to keep people from God…but in the end God will have the last say, and he will destroy sin, and we will truly 100% be able to enjoy a relationship with god like how adam did before the fall….hmm, i hope God is funny cus I love to laugh…I wonder if God has hobbies like how we do? Cant wait to find out one day…

        As I was reading peoples websites and pages on how God hates us, and the Jacob and Esau reference was used just as you said, I remember thinking, “But he gave his only begotten son to save us…yes, he hates sin, but does he personally hate us? God has beef with sin, not us!! His every move is motivated by love, and if he didn’t love us he would send Jesus who willingly died for us…”(Now, if God and Jesus are one, does that mean that everything that Jesus felt on the cross was felt by God or just by Jesus alone?)

        Im only 16, but if I ever get to have kids I wanna make sure that they dont fear God. Respect him yes, but I want them to know that he doesn’t bite…he’s not all mean and vicious and ready to strike ya down with thunder and lightening and send a plague over your house if you sin or something like that lol cus I feel like thats how the majority of the world see’s God. He’s seen as bad, mean, uncaring…but he is quite literally the source of everything good(what a plain word to describe him)

        If you ever choose to write a post about this, I’d love to read it!

      • Yes, I know Mel Wild’s blog – In My Father’s House – great insights!

        How wonderful you have understanding of God’s goodness and love at age 16! He will continue to ‘wow!’ you. It just keeps getting better and better as we explore the beauties of His Son Jesus and get free of religious traditional teaching.

        Scripture says all things are summed up in Jesus and that He holds all things together. Looks like He has ALL of us and all things! My goodness can we even grasp the depths of that truth. (Col 1:17)

        You mention that God will have the last say, and destroy sin. Have you considered those verses that explain how Jesus already dealt with all sin at the cross? When Jesus said “It is finished.” that was part of the finish – all sin was taken away. Check out 2Cor 5:14-16,19, Col 2:19, Heb 9:26 (Greek for ‘put away’ is cancelled, annulled, abrogated), Heb 10:17. So many more – perhaps that topic will be another post! John the Baptist even said, “Behold, the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world!” Okay, now we’re talkin’ about the world. Yikes! Is there something we have not realized about what really happened on that cross?

        Yes, God felt everything Jesus felt – including the joy set before Him as He endured the cross! (Heb 12:2) It says God was IN Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them. (2Cor 5:19) I was taught when Jesus cried out on the cross, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”, that God the Father was turning His back on Jesus because He could not look on sin (that Jesus became). How gullible I was to religious teaching! Now I see! God the Father was right there in Jesus on the cross. You are right on – Jesus and the Father are One.(Jn 14:9-11, 17:21) So how could they ever possibly be separated? If God so loved the WORLD, then He was right there with Jesus on the cross ‘loving the world to death’. Scripture says we died with Christ on the cross. (2Cor 5:14) Our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin be done away with so we are no longer slaves to sin. (Rom 6:6) The Godhead took care of sin once for all. It was a package deal – Father, Jesus, Holy Spirit – scooping up mankind in LOVE, forgiving mankind, removing sin, and freeing us to be a new creation. Now to come into the truth of our true identity!

        Paul makes an incredible statement to prove that all sin was dealt with on the cross. He states that Jesus was delivered up because of our offenses, and was raised because of our justification. (Rom 4:25) If we had not been justified (declared righteous) – then Jesus would not have risen from the dead. Gasp! Then to grasp this was for the whole wide world. Another gasp?! It is the Father’s wooing on each and every heart to awaken us to this incredible sacrificial love for ALL – each and every person since before the beginning of time! (2Tim 1:9-10)

        Because of what Jesus accomplished at the cross, through His resurrection, and ascension we actually have a 100% restored relationship with Him – right here and right now! That ‘garden’ relationship has already been restored! Remember, Jesus was the last Adam. He came to show us what the true Adam was always meant to be. We have absolute boldness to enter His presence, to draw near in full assurance, and be intimate with Him. (Heb 10:19-22) We are already one with Him – you can’t get any closer in terms of intimacy and nearness. 😉 So sad that many Christians think we have to wait until heaven to enjoy fullness of relationship with Him. Another big fat lie!

        Oh by the way, God is gobs of fun! He loves to party and have big feasts! Jesus certainly gives lots of examples of that in many of His parables. Oh the joy of relationship with Him! Smiles and laughs are everywhere with Him. 😀

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