As we look to Christmas day on Friday to celebrate the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ, lets remember that Christ came to bring life to the dead. What that means is Christ redeemed a people set apart to live eternally with him. He graciously forgives the repentant of their sins thus imputing his righteousness to them so they may be presented blameless before the Father. May we long for that day when we meet our Savior face to face. Noel Due got me really excited about this when he wrote:
"In this new creation, all of the impurities of false worship will be done away, and the whole of the heavens and the earth will be led in praise to God by the great King-Priest, Jesus Christ. With him will be a multitude beyond human reckoning, in whose lives and relationships the image of the Son will be fully seen. Conformed to his image, they will be true worshipers of God, from whose hearts all idolatry will have been cleansed, and in whose minds and wills they find only love, empowering them to fulfil all the commandments of God with a willing spirit and perfect obedience. The glories of this age to come, though not understood at all by the spirit of this age, are communicated to believers through the ministry of God's own Spirit, so that the people of God are filled with hope for the coming kingdom, and live by faith through the sufferings and trials of the current age in which the idols, and the demonic powers behind them, still make their impact." (Created for Worship, 237)
Paul says similarly, "For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us" (Romans 8:18). Suffering and trials in this life compared to an eternity of perfect worship, love and obedience to Christ is no comparison. Christ humbly came to die so sinners (me and you) could gain this eternal reward through faith in him.
With Christmas in mind I would like to give away a Christmas gift to a reader of this blog. Whether you read on the blog or via email you are welcome to enter. All you need to do to enter is email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. The deadline is Wednesday at noon. The winner will be announced on Thursday and will receive a copy of A Gospel Primer by Milton Vincent.
Grace upon grace,