I was watching a video recently in which a man was tritely asked to quantify the existence of God, time and creation. It was only a clip so I do not know the context or parties involved but I can say; the defender spoke quite well as he confidently explained, in our finite thinking, we cannot truly comprehend an almighty God... we can not quantify something.... or rather, someone.... who is beyond measure.
As he expounded, he quoted Genesis 1:
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.
He went on to break this down:
beginning = here we see God created time
heavens = God created space
earth = God created, well, earth and the matter all around us
He was clear and concise and, granted, as a Christian I am biased, but I was inspired by his fervor. I have heard this explanation before, however, it never stops being powerfully beautiful. And every time the defense of a God-centered creation elicits one of my favorite verses in all of God's Word:
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.
John is probably my favorite gospel because of the powerful truths there. Truths like...
For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
John the Baptist's humble proclamations that:
"He must increase, but I must decrease."
The grace-upon-grace filled story of the Woman of Samaria and Jesus speaks a truth which tears down all barriers, prompting her to run and tell the Good News (chapter 4).
In this gospel, Jesus calls out not just the religious elite, but also the self-righteous commoner. We hear his heart when he declares,
"...I say these things so that you may be saved..." (5:34b)
And as he bares witness, there are all the Truly, Trulies calling attention to the GREAT TRUTHs he came to share.
He speaks to people on judgment and protects the adulteress woman from being stoned.
In John he uses the famous title "I AM" as Moses once heard God self-describe. (8:58)
So much power, precision, symbolism (the correlation between the feasts and Jesus' claims in conjunction to them), and even peace. Where else is Jesus recorded for FOUR whole chapters in a row giving his last big speech in private with his closest disciples and then praying a powerful prayer which encourages us as Christians to this day.
I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the word you will have tribulation. But take heart, I have overcome the world."
Easter (Resurrection Sunday) is in a short week and a half. I've been so consumed by the Timothy study the kids and are doing and the Hebrews study our pastor is doing, and the craziness of being 'on-call' for cancer (my dad's) and prepping for a 1200 mile journey, and hubby switching jobs...... it is scary-easy to glaze over this momentous day. I found out yesterday I will be leaving for back east to help my dad a week earlier then planned and will ultimately be spending Easter in a Chicago-land hospital talking with doctors about cancer and recovery and making sure my dad is well cared for.
It almost seemed wrong. But in the end.... it is absolutely right. Jesus didn't come for celebrations and traditions... he came to remind the world he was bigger then all that. He came to serve and save and deliver.... what better place to be on Easter then where all that can be applied?
So this morning I flipped open my worn Bible to the pages of John. I read, "In the beginning..." and I journaled John 14:27 and I made a commitment within myself to keep on reading John between now and Easter because no matter how worn those pages get... they never get old.
The epistles may testify to the Glory and teachings of Christ... all of the Bible embodies the Deity and promise of God, but the gospels breathe out his life in clear, crisp, technicolor... something we need to regularly remember in the detail God so brilliantly provided through their authors. The celebration of Jesus' Resurrection and fulfillment of the greatest promise to man isn't on a Sunday in the spring... it is every day for all eternity. Yet, I will admit, springtime is a great time to be reminded of the renewal and new Life Jesus came to give.
I pray, wherever you are in God's Word this season, that you are seeing the awesome Power of God's Words, spoken to create life in the beginning, and continuously given through time to renew life even now.
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you.
Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.