02 Dec Reading this book may change everything
Why is that Bible left lying on the shelf, unopened for decades, just a space filler. I think the reason may be how we picture God, and how we see ourselves. If we view God as a distant being, who is getting grumpy, then we are going to keep our distance, just stay out of his way. If we view ourselves as the cause of this grumpiness, then we are bound to think it better to hide altogether, and if we pick up this book and turn a few pages, it is going to make us feel even worse, it will seem to be pointing out all our faults, we think it better to close the book and watch tv.
The problem is our perception of the book, if our thinking is wrong, then we live life limping and going nowhere. The Bible is a book that reveals Jesus, He was there at the very beginning of creation and the book ends with Jesus and once we see this we find him wherever we look in this book.
26 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”
Then we read here;
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. 4 In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.
In one sentence we see what this book is about a plan to make man in Gods image (Our being a triune God, and the one doing the talking is Jesus). Now a few pages in and we see this plan turns to custard due to a talking snake, here is the overall result;
21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.
So man is messed up from the beginning, we now see this in the philosophy of the world that says we are material only, natural, some sort of cosmic accident, just complex pond froth. In the last book of the Bible we read the outcome of this philosophy. The world at large worships someone or something called the beast and the image of the beast. But wait … There is good news, you can read it here;
29 For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.
Note that this says predestined, that means it is going to happen for sure. God did not give up on the original plan, I think this was His plan all along. There are two images being discussed here, one is the image of the Son, the other a beast. The good news and bad news is;
2 Corinthians 4:4
4 whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them. ……
and verse 6….
6 For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
The Bible is a book about reconciliation, it is about Jesus and about you, and me. It is really good news, it is about a God who wants us to draw near (not hide) and be apart of His perfect plan (He is not grumpy). We just need to view this book through the spectacles of the Gospel of Grace, then it starts to make sense. Here is how it all takes place;
2 Corinthians 3:18
18 But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.
Once we get a revelation of what the Bible is about we will be picking it up everyday for sure! and it is He who does the doing, the making, we just behold as in a mirror ….. That’s Grace. That’s really good news!
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All versus are New King James Version (NKJV) and the emphasis are all mine.