February 2020

God is not a god of our imaginations – Part 3

God never speaks of Jesus in less than the highest accolades human language can communicate. Hebrews 1:8 records possibly the highest tribute made by God the Father of His Son; “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever, the scepter of uprightness is the scepter of your kingdom.” Jesus Christ is the eternal sovereign ruler of all.

God is not a god of our imaginations - Part 3When thinking of Jesus Christ, worldly attitudes should not be permitted to influence your conclusions of  Him. Even religious thinking will attempt to dethrone Christ in order to bring Him down to a mere human level, making Him less significant. The lower He becomes in your thinking, the less worthy He becomes of your total surrender and obedience.

In returning to the apostle Paul’s declaration of Christ’s majestic deity, we read; “he is the head of the body, the church” (Colossians 1:18a). The Church is not merely a religious organisation aimlessly staggering through life hoping to get things right. No, the Church is the living body of Christ, made up of believers world-wide with Christ at the helm. 1 Peter 5:2 refers to the church as “the flock of God” with Jesus as “the Chief Shepherd” (1 Peter 5:4). Nothing escapes the Shepherd’s attention; therefore, nothing is left to chance. Christ supplies every need His body has with no part suffering neglect.

“He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent” (Colossians 1:18b). While some may argue that Jesus was not the first or the last to rise from the dead; Jesus is however, the only one to rise from the dead never to die again. “Christ Jesus is the one who died – more than that, who was raised – who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us” (Romans 8:34).

As the Church’s resurrected Lord, He intercedes tirelessly on our behalf with the Father. Maintaining our eternal security under His justification, progressing our ongoing sanctification, and blessing our daily lives. As He constantly presents our case, no detail is overlooked or minimalised.

Christians have every reason to rest confident in Christ. Why? Because; “in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross” (Colossians 1:19-20). Our Saviour is not made of wood or stone. He is not some created deity. He is not just another religious phanatic. He is God who walked amongst us for a short time. He is God’s Son who came to earth for the distinct purpose of going to the Cross, making peace with His Heavenly Father for the sins of all those who would believe in Him.

Many today sit looking at Jesus as side-line spectators. The question for them is the same as Jesus put to His twelve disciples following a group of people turning back and walking away from Him. “Do you want to go away as well?” Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life, and we have believed, and have come to know, that you are the Holy One of God” (John 6:67-69). Despite Peter’s many failings, He knew who Jesus was, and He knew what Jesus could do. Peter was convinced that no other could bring the gift of eternal life, so he believed in Jesus the Christ.

I encourage you to affirm your belief in Jesus. Celebrate the certainty of eternal life in Christ. Be glad about His constant work on your behalf before the throne of God.

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God Is Not A God Of Our Imaginations – Part 2

The apostle Paul never left God’s people questioning who or what Christians believe in. The certainty of God’s Word stands believers on rock solid ground as to the truth to build your life upon. While the world scrambles for any and every idea which would exclude God from their thinking, believers rest in God’s testimony of Jesus Christ. Peter announced publicly on the day of Pentecost; Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified” (Acts 2:36).

God Is Not A God Of Our Imaginations - Part 2Likewise, the apostle Paul’s anthem to the Colossians of Jesus Christ’s supremacy continues with the highest accolades. “For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities – all things were created through him and for him” (Colossians 1:16). Jesus Christ is the reason everything exists in every dimension imaginable. God the Father exercised His creative will through His Son (Heb 1:2) “so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible” (Hebrews 11:3b).

“All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. 4 In him was life…” (John 1:3-4). Christ needed no building materials. He did not start a process which only time and chance could complete. No, He created everything out of nothing as the perfect expression of His Father’s will. Being the creator therefore, “He is before all things, and in him all things hold together” (Colossians 1:16-20). Jesus is not only the eternal one living before time began; He was also before anything else that ever existed.

When Christ created everything in the universe, He did so with the intentional design that required His power to hold everything together on an ongoing basis. The universe is forever dependent upon the invisible power of Christ to prevent it flying apart. The very structure of all material and immaterial things throughout the universe relies upon Christ to maintain their existence.

Paul’s reference to “thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities” shows that the various categories of angelic beings, whether holy or unholy, all come under the rulership of Christ. Jesus is sovereign Lord over all spiritual beings, no exceptions. As such, the time is coming when “every knee shall bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2:10-11). Jesus indomitable (impossible to subdue) rule over all will culminate in the Day of the Lord which will bring every creature in humble and bowed worship before Him.

That time of universal acknowledgement will be the ultimate proclamation that everything exists “for him” (Col 1:16). All creation exists for Christ’s pleasure and glory. God gives testimony of Jesus inherent qualification for such majestic worship in Hebrews 1:8; “But of the Son he says, “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever, the scepter of uprightness is the scepter of your kingdom.”

I encourage you to keep these truths in your thoughts today. Praise God for making His Son known to us. Share these truths of Christ with someone else so they too can rejoice in knowing that God is not a god of our imaginations.

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God is not a god of our imaginations – Part 1

God is not a god of our imaginations. He is not the creation of overactive or delusional minds. No, He is real, definitive, and knowable. And, “in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son” (Hebrews 1:2). Therefore, to know God we must know His Son, Jesus Christ. God’s Word explains who Jesus Christ is with remarkable clarity, with the apostle Paul writing one of the most concise and detailed accounts of Jesus in Colossians 1:15-20.

God is not a god of our imaginations - Part 1“He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation” (Col 1:15). Jesus Christ is the precise profile of God the Father. In Jesus, every facet of God’s infinite and majestic nature is perfectly and fully manifested. Jesus is not a created being, nor does He only have some of God’s qualities. God does not merely indwelt Jesus, nor is He a facsimile copy of God. These realities qualify Jesus testimony recorded in John 10:30; “I and the Father are one.” Jesus directly corrected Philip on His identity in John 14:9; “Whoever has seen me has seen the Father.”

No other earthly person or religious organisation, including the Church, is capable of accurately displaying the full nature of God like Jesus. Jesus has no deficiencies, He cannot be improved upon, nor can He advance further in His deity. Jesus boldly confessed to a group of Jews; “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am” (John 8:58). Jesus is the human form of God in every way possible; eternal, holy, and perpetual in His very essence. He cannot be added to, He never tires, and He never changes.

As Paul continues to define Jesus expressions of deity, we see that He is “the firstborn of all creation.” In the original Greek language which Paul wrote, the word firstborn carries the idea of chef one, or supreme one. This stretches our understanding with biblical clarity; Jesus is the highest-ranking deity over all things which exist. In every dimension of reality, in every sphere of the universe, and in every chapter of time eternal; the supremely Holy One who reigns unchallenged and unconjurable, is the Lord Jesus Christ.

Paul, in his ministerial charge to young Timothy, perfectly brought together a fusion of trinitarian truth concerning Jesus and God the Father. “He who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone has immortality, who dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has ever seen or can see. To him be honour and eternal dominion. Amen” (1 Timothy 6:15-16).

As if that is not enough, He “was declared to be the Son of God in power according to the Spirit of holiness by his resurrection from the dead, Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 1:4). Death has no power over Jesus, no grave could hold Him, no power of hell is able to intervene His flow of life or His rulership over all that exists. Jesus testifying to a group of Pharisees said; “I lay down my life that I may take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again” (John 10:17-18).

It is precisely this mighty Jesus who loves you and I; who indwells us by His Spirit and shall bring to completion the work He has begun within us (Php 1:6). I encourage you to openly confess Jesus as your God. Not a god of your imagination, but the sovereign God of eternity.

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