Sunday, August 25, 2013

Along the Way ... for the week of August 25, 2013

"Make the picture bigger!"  This was the advice I received from a commentary as I was preparing to preach and teach about what we learn from the story of creation.

The reference was to God's intention in sending His Son Jesus to earth.  Colossians 1:15-20 captures the apostle Paul's attempt to "make the picture bigger!"  Too often we think God's only purpose in sending His Son was to bring salvation to His people.  We refer to the angel's words in Matthew 1:21, "you are to give Him the name Jesus because He will save His people from their sins." and we believe we have captured God's full intention in sending His Son to earth.  However, as Paul advises, we need to "make the picture bigger"!

In Colossians 1:16, Paul reminds us that "all things" were created by and for Jesus, "things in heaven and things on earth ... all things have been created through Him and for Him."  Then in verses 19-20, Paul reveals God's true purpose in sending His Son to earth, "For God was pleased to have all His fullness dwell in Him, and through Him to reconcile to Himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through His blood, shed on the cross."  

God's intention was reconciliation between Himself and all things; peace brought through Jesus' blood shed on the cross.  Peace with God, peace between peoples, peace with all of creation; a complete restoration of everything broken and marred by sin.  As "all things" were made by Him and for Him so "all things" find their reconciliation in Him!  This is the good news, and the reason why we need to "make the picture bigger!" 

Can you think of other things that are included in God's purpose in sending His Son Jesus?  Are there specific examples of things that have been reconciled or could be reconciled because of Jesus?  If so, I invite you to share them.

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