Many ancient Jews believed that God looked like their kings, and so they described God in terms of having a heavenly court, and sitting on a heavenly throne, directing their battles and demanding their tribute.
Christianity, for much of its history, has seen God in terms of the Roman Emperor, ruling the world through the agency and obedience of the citizens of his kingdom.
In the more recent times we’ve come to see God as being a bit like Father Christmas, checking to see who’s been naughty and who’s been nice, and rewarding people with gifts according to their deeds.
And the thing is, I’m atheist with regard to all of these Gods. I don’t believe God is a violent monarch who defends his tribe against the world. I don’t believe God is an emperor who is set on conquering all the other nations and bringing them to obedience. And I don’t believe that God is Santa Claus, I stopped believing in that capricious judgmental God a long time ago.
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