5 Stunning Things That Set God Apart from Us

Contributing Writer
5 Stunning Things That Set God Apart from Us

God is not like us. That’s a statement that is not too hard to make, nor it is too difficult to believe. God has even declared his ways are not like ours.

“’For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways,’
declares the Lord.
As the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts”

(Isaiah 55:8-9).

So, what are some things that set God apart from us? What are the aspects of his character that make who he is and what he does vastly different from us?

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1. His Unconditional Love

Any conversation about who God is should begin with his love. The Bible specifies that God is love. This means he does not contain love, but love is the essence of who God is. It’s not just that he is love, but the type of love and the way he loves is what sets him apart from us.

The type of love God has for us is agape. The root of this love is that it is an unconditional love that always seeks the best in others. It is selfless and not based on emotion. So when God loves, he does so because he chooses to. Because he has made that choice, he will never undo that decision. Perhaps the best description of God’s love comes from 1 Corinthians 13.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails” (1 Corinthians 13:4-8a).

If you replace the mentions of the word love with God, you see how his love differs from our love. When God loves us, he does it in this manner and he does it perfectly and completely. He does not love with an agenda or with any strings attached. His desire is only your good, and he has no interest in harming you.

This does not mean he won’t discipline or that nothing will ever go wrong in your life. It means because of his love, he will never desert you and he will be with you as you walk through the various places of life.

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2. His Holiness

“And they were calling to one another:
Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty;
the whole earth is full of his glory’”

(Isaiah 6:3).

When Isaiah wrote about seeing the Lord, the one thing he noticed that was being declared by the angels was the holiness of God. God’s holiness sets him well apart from us. God’s holiness reminds us of who we truly are.

When confronted with God’s holiness, Isaiah acknowledged he is a man of unclean lips. This is not only true of Isaiah, but of everyone when they get a revelation of who God is. God’s holiness is so great that even our best effort to present ourselves as righteous before him falls as dirty rags in his presence.

While we will never approach God’s holiness in this body, thankfully, his Spirit within us drives us toward holy living, because he is holy.

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3. His Ability to Forgive and Forget

One amazing thing about God is not that he forgives sin, his love motivates him to do that. What is even more amazing is that once God forgives sin, he forgets it. This is so different from us as humans. For many of us, we might find the power to forgive, but forgetting is something that we may wrestle with, especially when someone has hurt us deeply. We may even withdraw from those people and protect our emotions so that no one can ever hurt us again.

God is far different from that. When he forgives, he forgets and never holds repented sin against you. I often tell people God will never remind you of the sin that you have repented of. Satan will do that, but God won’t.

“For I will forgive their wickedness
and will remember their sins no more”

(Hebrews 8:12).

“He does not treat us as our sins deserve
or repay us according to our iniquities.
For as high as the heavens are above the earth,

so great is his love for those who fear him;
as far as the east is from the west,
so far has he removed our transgressions from us”

(Psalm 103:10-12).

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4. His Faithfulness

For me, one quality about God that truly separates him from us is one that I find endearing: his faithfulness. The simplest way to say it is God never gives up on you. He is faithful and loyal to the end. Here are some of his promises that declare this quality of God.

“The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged” (Deuteronomy 6:8).

“Though my father and mother forsake me, the Lord will receive me” (Psalm 27:10).

If we are going to be honest, we all know people in our lives whom we may have given up on. You may have done everything you could to help, but you just reach a point where you feel as if enough is enough.

However, God does not view us in that fashion. His love never ceases, his mercies never end, and his faithfulness flows from one generation to the next. When he says something, you can rely on it because he is faithful to do what he has promised.

One reminder of his faithfulness is that he will complete the work he has started in you. What that means is because of his faithfulness, you are going to make it through. Not because you are the most faithful, but because he is.

“And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns” (Philippians 1:6).

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5. His Perfection in All He Does

We may occasionally show some of the same characteristics that God displays. For example, we may show unconditional love at times, or be able to forget an offense. We may even live holy or remain faithful in seasons. The difference is that we do it imperfectly, while everything God does is perfect.

God’s love is perfect towards you, which means it comes with no corruption or selfish motive in it. Even God’s faithfulness is perfect because he will fulfill everything he has said. Even when we fail or are faithless, he remains faithful. Regardless of what God does, he does it perfectly. He administers perfect grace, perfect mercy, perfect justice, even perfect discipline. In everything he does, he never compromises who he is because he is perfect. He even dwells in perfect holiness, which is why when we stand in his presence, our shortcomings are immediately recognizable.

Because he is perfect in all he does, that also means that his plan for salvation and our redemption is perfect too. The way of redemption he made for us through the perfect sacrifice of Jesus provided the simplest and best way of salvation for us. No other religion has a God who brings salvation in this fashion. He has made it so that everyone can come to him – not because of their own merit, but because of his sacrifice.

Only a God who is perfect in all he does could devise and execute a plan of this nature and magnitude.

Final Thought

I rejoice in the God who is not like me and I am honored that this amazing, loving God allows us to have fellowship and relationship with him. All I can say is thank you God for being who you are and for your unfailing love and faithfulness that you show us every single day.

“Can a mother forget the baby at her breast
and have no compassion on the child she has borne?

Though she may forget,
I will not forget you!
See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands”

(Isaiah 49:15-16a).

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Clarence Haynes 1200x1200Clarence L. Haynes Jr. is a speaker, Bible teacher, and co-founder of The Bible Study Club.  He is the author of The Pursuit of Purpose which will help you understand how God leads you into his will. His most recent book is The Pursuit of Victory: How To Conquer Your Greatest Challenges and Win In Your Christian Life. This book will teach you how to put the pieces together so you can live a victorious Christian life and finally become the man or woman of God that you truly desire to be. Clarence is also committed to helping 10,000 people learn how to study the Bible and has just released his first Bible study course called Bible Study Basics. To learn more about his ministry please visit clarencehaynes.com