The sacred has always been the opposite of profane. The profane views show that the existence of humans is totally a natural phenomenon. On the other hand, the holy scriptures of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam exhibit the sacred as all-powerful that has complete power over all humans, humans have to obey God, and they cannot do anything without his will.
Human mind is incapable and insufficient to understand the existence of God. Based on the evidences from the texts of the Holy Scriptures, this essay demonstrates some indicators, which differentiate God from humans and present God as a sacred reality. It also shows how God is portrayed in the sacred scriptures, and how is it different from the traditional philosophies.
The dichotomy between the sacred and profane are not new, both are opposite from each other. The traditional philosophies presented by Kant (1854) in his book called “Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion” have suggested that the nature of God is similar to that of the humans.
Moreover, if the humans have weakness, disorder and disturbance than the nature of God is also not free from these weaknesses. Kant’s book “Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion” questions that if God is the one who puts everything in order, than who puts God in order.
Other traditional philosophies about the idea of God suggest that human existence in this world occurred because of a coincidence. Darwinian philosophy is one such example, who believes that humans are going through biological evolution. Cunningham and Kelsay, suggest that there are some factors, which indicate the sacred as real. They argue that the features of the God are “Specially Distinctive” from that of the humans. God is distinctive from the human nature because he controls the humans.
The prime reason that the God is distinctive from others is that he is the creator. Even the creation of a very minute thing needs a maker, and it is not possible that things come in complete harmony without God. Humans are also creators but only of their own social world, their creation is finite and they could not provide any thing to others without the help of God. This is the theology mainly demonstrated in the Holy Scriptures.
Holy Scriptures shows that God is distinctive because he has the supernatural powers he is infinite, and in complete harmony. The Book of Genesis maintains that God send a ram through his angle from the sky when Abraham was about to sacrifice his son (Genesis: 22, 13). Similarly, when the God was about to descend on Mount Sinai there was a thick cloud over the mountain and there was a loud thunder and lightning (Exodus: 19, 16).
God is also beyond the volitional control of human beings. Although, the traditional philosophies could argue against it, the Holy Scriptures form the major faiths of the world show that God is beyond human aspirations. One such example could be found in ‘The book of Genesis’.
In order to test the faith of Abraham, God ordered him to sacrifice his only son (Genesis: 22, 1-20). Of course, this was against Abraham’s will, because why would anyone want to sacrifice his only son. Abraham succeeded in sacrificing his son Isaac, God greatly approved his act, and told him that he only wanted to test his faith.
It is proved in the example that God loves those who succeed in sacrificing their beloved for the sake of God. However, no one can go against his intention. The God wants humans to obey his commands. The book of Exodus also expresses that if the humans obey his command, and will work according to his intentions, then God will render his blessing over him. God does not want anyone to cross the limits of his commands. The humans are powerless before God (Exodus: 20, 1-24).
Cunningham and Kelsay have also suggested that God is also concerned with the welfare of the humans. God through his providence provide guidance to the humans so that they could live with peace in the world. God called Moses on Mount Sinai and passed down the guidance for the Israelites, known as the “Ten Commandments.”
If the context of these commandments is explored, one could indicate that they are so well defined in terms of welfare of the human beings that if humans only conform to these ten rules provided by God, there will be a complete peace in the world. These commandments prohibit murders, adultery, and theft and so on. God also asks to honour the father and mother, and ask not to make any other god beside him (Exodus: 20, 1-24).
Similar, the idea of the reward and the punishment of the God is also related to the welfare of the humans. If there is no punishment for the wrong actions of the humans, there will be complete chaos in the world. Similarly, the reward is also necessary. All the scriptures of the major faiths of the world show that God rewards his beloved in the form of blessings. In addition, God promises reward for them in the after world.
God is determinative of human existence. God arranges the livelihood of the humans, he provides him food and shelter, and if he wishes, he could withhold it from them.
In Quran, the example of Joseph is provided, their brothers plotted against Joseph. Initially they succeed, and they removed Joseph from his parents. However, in the longer run they failed. Because God provided Joseph was provided with power to control the wealth. It is written in Quran that God established Joseph in Egypt and gave him knowledge and wisdom when he reached his youth.
In the end of Joseph’s story, he was in possession of the wealth of whole of Egypt, at a time when the whole of Egypt was facing drought. His brothers were completely helpless as they asked mercy form Joseph without realizing him as their brother. Quran suggest that this story is provided as an example that God has complete control of all the possession and the wealth of the world and provide it to only those he wishes (Quran: 12, 1-111).
Holy scriptures present God as sacred reality. Humans have very limited powers in the world and they could not do anything in this world without free will. On the other hand, God is free from all kind of bounds. God could use his power with free will. God is the determinative of the human existence, and provide humans with guidance for their welfare, and God rewards those who fulfil his wishes. Hence, the Holy scriptures present the reality of God as completely different from the traditional philosophies.
Cunningham, Lawrence S. and John Kelsay. The Sacred Quest An Invitation to the Study of Religion. Prentice Hall, 2009
Hume, David. “Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion.” Ed. Kemp Smith. 1854.