Christianity isn't built on principles, a philosophy or practices, although it contains those elements. The uniqueness of Christianity rests on the cross and Christ’s triumph over death. We need to be reminded of this lest we lapse into believing faith in Jesus is just another self-improvement program. Lest we are lulled into a lethargic view of believing Jesus. To be sure, it's much more. This week we take a break from our journey though the Book of Acts to contemplate on Jesus’ death, resurrection and the events leading to it. If these Devos challenge you, speak to you or stir you, feel free to repost them or pass them on to others.
". . . God causes all things to work together for the good to those who love God, . . ."
“God causes all things to work together” is more than just a clever phrase used as a panacea for getting us through perilous times. It is the way things work out, there is a convergence of God’s plan and purpose within our circumstances.
In the final days of Jesus there is a merging of the conspiracy of the opposers and the compassion of Jesus’ followers. One treasured Jesus, while the other was about to commit treason. There's the plot of Judas to betray Jesus, colliding with the plan of Jesus to redeem the world.
The central point of the convergence is that there is a new creation being produced. Both life and death converge in Jesus. The death of Christ terminates our old creation and the resurrection germinates the new creation. The old is gone and is now replaced with Jesus. He becomes everything to us. In the new creation there is no racial difference, no cultural or social rank, instead, Christ is our all-in-all.
It's necessary for each individual to be brought into the Christ-saving death and resurrection of Jesus. In His death, we suffer sin losing its hold in us. Through His resurrection, we enjoy the indwelling life-giving Spirit. Death and resurrection work together so that God’s life in us will have full expression.
The disciples followed the Lord from the very beginning, and eventually passed through the process of His death and resurrection. And so must we. The disciples always preached Christ’s death and resurrection. And so must we.
Many talk of being with Christ without having a full understanding of what it means. To be “in Christ” is to be in full enjoyment of Him; only as we realize that when Jesus was crucified, we were crucified. Likewise, when He was resurrected, we were resurrected. We are also in His ascension. Therefore, we say thank you, Lord, for making us new.
Has Jesus’ death, resurrection and ascension converged in your life?