Holding It Together

“He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.”  (Colossians 1:17).  Just as a wheel finds it shape and strength in its design around the hub, everything that is real finds its being and definition around Jesus.

Our finite little brains tend to think linearly and in terms of efficient outcomes.  Like learning the rules to a new game, we strategize about how to play well in this Christian life game.  When we pray, we have thought through what is required for a specific outcome and we are asking God to be the supplier of whatever is missing for our outcome to work.  So what’s wrong with that?  Shouldn’t we pray for God to fill in the missing pieces?  Doesn’t He promise to answer when we ask?  So why doesn’t He every time?  Sometimes it seems He has disappeared.  How does this game work? (more…)

He Is!

As I work through the Book of John in the New Testament, I’ve discovered a common theme that I never noticed before.  Jesus talks a lot about who He is.  In John 6, the crowds ask Him for a sign so they know how to believe Him.  They reminded Jesus about how God provided them manna from heaven to sustain them.  They asked Jesus for bread from heaven.  Jesus responds by saying, “I am the Bread of Life.” He is the Source. (more…)

He is Alive! He is Alive, Indeed!

So what does this really mean?  Why is this day so important to those of us who follow Christ?  Why is this about so much more than bunnies and eggs?  Why?  Because the resurrection changes absolutely everything.

The cross was God’s mercy.  Jesus paid our debt.  It’s like someone paying off your mortgage after you have lost everything in a fire…that you started.  When Jesus said, “It is finished,” He was saying that the sin debt I owed was paid in full. (more…)

Jesus the Friend

Peter has always been one of my favorite disciples.  Between Peter and John, I always get a good laugh when I read the Gospels.  Peter, the impulsive, passionate, will-try-anything-once guy finds himself in trouble a lot.  Remember when Jesus asked him to walk on the water?  Without thinking, he jumps out of the boat and walks on the water.  Then, he starts thinking.  Oops.

When Jesus was arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane, it was Peter who cut of the guard’s ear.  Gross.  Jesus once again had to fix Peter’s impulsive actions.  (more…)

Remembering

Having grown up a Gentile, a non-Jew, I have never fully grasped the full impact of what this Good Friday means.  Recently, I have been studying the book of Hebrews and have learned some things that shed huge amounts of light on the significance of today.  Good Friday is the day we reflect on the death of Jesus and what that means.

In Hebrews 9 and 10, the author is explaining the tabernacle of the Jews and the role that Jesus plays within that context.  The Old Testament tabernacle, built by Moses under the explicit instructions of God, was built as a copy of the true tabernacle in heaven.  Somehow, all the parts, dimensions, and purposes serve to copy an actual place in heaven.  (more…)