About Jesus - Steve (Stephen) Sweetman
is when we think about God sending Jesus into the world, which reminds me
of what Jesus said about Him sending us into the world.
Read John 20:21.
"Again Jesus said,
'Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am
sure we all agree that God sent Jesus into this world to live a life as
one exhibiting sacrificial grace. I
think that the most holy and righteous God choosing to live among sinful
humanity, and then suffering an atoning death on its behalf, had to have
been a huge sacrifice motivated by grace that none of us deserve, but
there is more.
now in heaven, Jesus' very existence suggests a continued life of
sacrificial grace. When Jesus
returned to heaven He did not return in the exact state of being in which
He existed prior to His incarnation. Romans
8:29 states that Jesus now exists as the first born of a brand new
creation of beings. John 1:1
tells us that prior to His incarnation Jesus wasn't just with God, as in
beside Him, He was God. That
suggests a unified plurality within the Godhead that no longer exists.
Right now, Jesus sits alongside His Father on His own throne as a
distinct new-creation personality, yet still in a divine unified plurality
within the God head that is difficult to comprehend. I,
therefore, suggest that once entering humanity Jesus altered His very
state of being for eternity, just for our benefit.
That is sacrificial grace.
the above, Revelation 5:6 tells us that right now and throughout eternity
Jesus will be seen as a lamb that has been slain.
There is, then, something about Jesus that will remind us of His
sacrificial death throughout eternity, a death motivated by grace that
provided our salvation that we certainly do not deserve.
20:21 implies that God sent Jesus into the world to live a life of
sacrificial grace. In like
manner, it implies that Jesus sends us into the world to live a similar
life of sacrificial grace. Of
course, our sacrifice certainly does not include our death to atone for
the sin of humanity. The
apostle Paul confirmed this when he told you and I to be a living
sacrifice which is our reasonable service (Romans 12:1). This is a pretty
heavy-duty calling on our lives, so why do I not hear about this in
today's watered-down evangelical gospel?
that I hear these days is invite Jesus into our hearts, get forgiven, and
secure a place in heaven. It
is like saying become a Christian and live happily ever-after, or, get
saved and carry on with your life. That
is not the Biblical gospel that tells us to repent, hand our lives over to
Jesus our Lord, and obey His call on our lives.
I suggest we return to the very first gospel message ever preached.
There, Peter preached that Jesus is both Lord and Christ (Acts
2:36). As Christ, He gives
Himself to us. As Lord, we
give ourselves to Him, and in the process we live as those He has sent
into the world as His representatives.
yes, remember that God sent Jesus into our world to live a life of
sacrificial grace this Christmas, but also remember that Jesus has sent
you into the world to live a similar life of sacrificial grace.
It's the best gift you can give anyone.