Opening the Bible and poring over its meanings is great fun–when the Holy Spirit is doing the leading. Jesus is our Interpreter.
18 Where there is no revelation [discipline of study and enlightenment by the Spirit], people cast off restraint [quit holding to the godly wisdom they have]; but blessed is the one who heeds wisdom’s instruction.
The kingdom of God is available to us because of what Jesus did for us on the cross. The question is, what did He do? Here are some options:
- A debt cancelled, as in forgiven (Colossians 1:13)
- Consequences erased (done away with) 1 Corinthians 15:56-57
- A wound or cancer healed –
- Redeemed (more on this in the next #4)
All of them are correct, but incomplete. We need all of these illustrations to even begin to understand what Christ did on the cross in order for us to be restored concerning our relationship with the Father and to be partakers in His kingdom.
My favorite passage (today) is Colossians 1:13-14,
13 For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son [the Son He loves], 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
- He has rescued us- it sounds like a stronger man (Christ) entered the strong man’s (Satan’s) house, bound him, and took his plunder (us). Behold!* Matthew 12:29 says just that, “how can anyone enter a strong man’s house and carry off his possessions unless he first ties up the strong man? Then he can plunder his house.“ Hebrews 2:14-15 says something very similar.
- The dominion of darkness- We are talking spiritual darkness. It is because we have no light inside us (Matthew 6:22-23). Jesus is the Light of the World (John 8:12). We need Him (His Spirit) to enlighten us.
- Transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son (Jesus)– He takes us home!
- In whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins- Redemption can mean to buy back, but its original meaning was, “to recover.” If you go to the link, note that the idea of buying back is a relatively new one (14th century). Going back further reveals that it expresses the idea of starting over, as from an illness or injury. I like that!
We owe Jesus our lives, both physically and spiritually! Sin was destroying us and we couldn’t escape it. Jesus came to rescue us and to heal us. It was a RESCUE OPERATION!!! We are, indeed, forever grateful.
Abba, thank You for rescuing us and taking us home to be with You. I know that our glorification has not been fully realized, but we live by faith that when we die, we go to be with You (2 Corinthians 5:6-9). Being a subject of Your kingdom–a prince in Your royal house–is beyond imagining! I look forward to the Day that I step into eternity and into Your presence. Amen.
*Behold- “Look! Open your spiritual eyes and heart to what I am showing you.” Angels say it a lot.