As the Waters Cover the Sea

November 09 2018
November 09 2018

The last couple weeks we’ve been refocusing on God’s mission for his church—for us—here and now.  You see, we’re on assignment; we’ve been commissioned to testify about Jesus Christ, Lord of the nations:  But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth (Acts 1:8).  Witnesses take an oath to tell the truth, and testifying of Jesus means speaking the truth in love (Eph 4:15).

We testify that eternal hope in Christ is relevant here, there, and everywhere—even to “the end of the earth.”  God’s good news is not just for some sector of the human family:  it’s for people “from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages” (Rev 7:9).  We might add:  every socio-economic position, every political persuasion, every social circle, every age group, every educational level…

And how long does our commission remain in force?  Jesus said, This gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testi­mony to all nations, and then the end will come (Matt 24:14).  To sum up, then:  relevant for all people for all time.

Might there be some other way to get right with God?  Jesus said, ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me’ (John 14:6).  There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved (Acts 4:12).

You have to admit, the Bible isn’t fuzzy on these things.  And thank God for clarity.  We aren’t left wondering who Jesus really is and if it really matters to put your faith in him.  It matters—that’s clear!  John 3:16 is direct and unambiguous; it’s “eternal life” or “perishing,” one or the other:  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

Jesus doesn’t waffle and waver and equivocate when he presents the two options before us:  Enter by the narrow gate.  For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many.  For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few (Matt 7:13-14).

So is it arrogant to say our message points the way to ultimate mean­ing and joy?  It would be if it were just “our message.”  But God’s gospel is his timeless, trans-cultural, universal truth that applies to all humans made in his image—meaning everyone.  It is not arrogant to believe and share this truth, it’s loving; love spreads good news.  Refusing to share this hope—now that’s where we must do some soul-searching!

Here’s God’s grand design:  For the earth will be filled with the know­ledge of the glory of the Lord as the waters cover the sea (Hab 2:14).  And so, Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you! (Psalm 67:3).  Friends, let’s join together in praise to the Lord of the Nations, and in testifying of his amazing, saving grace!


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