Coming to know Jesus personally is the entire point to the Gospel. He’s forgiven us, but there’s more to it than that.
3 The prudent see danger and take refuge [in Jesus], but the simple keep going and pay the penalty.
We left off yesterday with the question of what is the entire point to knowing Jesus. The answer is quite simple if we stop and think about it:
- What kind of world do we live in?
- What condition were we in when we came to Christ?
- What has changed about our relationship with Him?
- What has changed about our circumstances?
Although we have been forgiven, we still live in a sin-sick world. Our circumstances didn’t change by coming to Christ. So, is the promise of heaven all we really have to fall back on spiritually? Enter the Holy Spirit–literally. The Spirit of Christ has come to live in us. He is our Guarantor, our Comforter, our Advocate, and our Guide. He IS Jesus! Jesus came to clear the way for Him to live in each of us. If life is a minefield, He knows where all the mines are and can help us through the minefield of life. We can be sure that we will incur serious damage without Him as our Guide.
Asaph wrote about this relationship in Psalm 73. Let’s look:
23 Yet I am always with you;
you hold me by my right hand.
24 You guide me with your counsel,
and afterward you will take me into glory.
25 Whom have I in heaven but you?
And earth has nothing I desire besides you.
26 My flesh and my heart may fail,
but God is the strength of my heart
and my portion forever.
Although Asaph (one of King David’s lead musicians) lived around a thousand years before Christ, he had a pretty good handle on the relationship that we currently have with the Lord:
- He is always with us;
- He holds us by our right (dominant) hand;
- He guides us with the counsel of His Spirit;
- We have His promise of eternity with Him in His kingdom;
- Our desires have changed to the point that nothing comes between us and Jesus;
- Our flesh fails, and so does our heart;
- God is the strength of our heart–but our flesh doesn’t have that same guarantee. In fact, we are warned several times in Scripture that we will suffer physically for Christ (2 Corinthians 1:4-5, Philippians 1:29, 2 Timothy 2:3, 1 Peter 2:21, 1 Peter 4:13, 1 Peter 5:10).
The one thing that we are sure of is that unless the Lord comes back, we all will die physically. Until God places all of Christ’s enemies under His feet (Psalm 110:1, Romans 16:20) and Jesus brings everything into unity under Him (Ephesians 1:10), we are destined to leave this world and go to His. In the meantime, He promises to walk with us the entire way, and when we get to the end of this life, He will walk with us into His eternal life. He is with us all the way!
It is this good news that we need to be sharing with those around us:
- God loves them very much.
- Jesus is God in the flesh and loves them very much.
- Jesus came to erase our sin and guilt and to walk with us through this life.
- He will walk us right into His world when this life is done.
- In the meantime, He gives us His love, joy and peace as signs of His Presence in our lives. We have His invitation to come to Him anytime and all the time for mercy and grace in our time of need (Hebrews 4:16).
- Through Christ, with Christ (His Spirit in us), we have victory over this world, its demons, its temptations, and its way of thinking. From now on, we have the mind of Christ (see 1 Corinthians 2:16).
Abba, what wonderful good news! As You reveal this good news in us, may we share it with those around us. Yes, we get to go to heaven when we die, but it’s more than that; it’s better than that. You want a personal and ongoing relationship with us RIGHT NOW! May we take advantage of such a great salvation. Amen.