‘Surely the Lord is in this place, and I was not aware of it.’ He was afraid and said, ‘How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God; this is the gate of heaven.” (Genesis 28:17). Amazing or awesome, can you imagine how Jacob felt as he had this dream at Bethel of going up and down the stairway to heaven and be told by God Himself that “I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go.’ He was taken up to heaven like Paul later was taken to the third heaven and John was given revelation of heaven. Why? So that we may know how awesome is the God of the Universe who is and was and ever shall be. Throughout Scripture we can read of his majesty.
“Awesome in glory” (Exodus 15:11). That’s what He is. In Deuteronomy 7:21 we read, “Do not be terrified by them, for the Lord you God, who is among you, is a great and awesome God.” Who is this God? “For the Lord your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, and great God, mighty and awesome, who shows no partiality and accept no bribes.” (Deuteronomy 10:17). In case you were thinking of bribing God, think again. So what does this One say? “If you do not carefully follow all the words of this law, which are written in this book, and do not revere this glorious and awesome name-the Lord you God-the Lord will send fearful plagues on you and your descendants.” (Deut. 28:58). Harsh! Yes, God means what He says about obedience. Or try what Nehemiah says about God. “Now therefore, our God, our great, mighty and awesome God, who keeps his covenant of love…” He is speaking of a faithful God of love in hardship. Many think of the God of the Old Testament as vengeful and harsh. Well, God is the same yesterday, today and forever. He is love.
The Psalmists speak now. “In your majesty ride forth victoriously in behalf of truth, humility and righteousness; let your right hand display awesome deeds” (Psalm 45:4). And again, “How awesome is the Lord Most High, the great King over all the earth!” (Psalm 47:2). Have you seen, are you seeing His majesty everywhere, or are you just seeing your problems ad the world’s turbulence? “Come and see what God has done how awesome his works in man’s behalf!” (Psalm 66:3). “You are awesome, O God, in your sanctuary, the God of Israel gives power and strength to his people” (Psalm 68:35). It is overwhelming to read of God’s faithfulness. “He provided redemption for is people; he ordained his covenant forever-holy and awesome in his name” (Psalm 111:9). Then near the end of the Old Testament Zephaniah 2:11 tells us, “the Lord will be awesome to them when he destroys all the gods of the land” (Zephaniah 2:11).