A theology that can take heart now (rather than only later).

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christian / hope / light

“Jesus, who is wisdom incarnate, gives us access to the Creator to reveal hidden things and invites us to seek out our sacred responsibility to perceive God’s unscripted presence here and now,” – Peter Enns.

The reality of Jesus offers to us not only an ancient story about the past, but, among other things, it reveals to us what relationship with the unseen Creator-God can look like in the present, as well.

As well as the biblical Jesus being an epic of the past, and a ‘to be continued’ story for the future, the reality of Jesus has implications for our present moment – which I think, our theology sometimes fails to create adequate space for. In God’s Pursuit of Man by Tozer he talks about a lack of emphasis on some-thing having the same effect as a theology that doesn’t believe it – which brings to mind a poignant thought;

What effect would it have on our spirituality if it were to emphasize to a greater extent – the life of Jesus? And moreover, what if our spirituality is lacking an awareness of such?

If we couldn’t, or just simply don’t, read and meditate on the life of Jesus (the fully Divine but also fully human Son of God), we’d have less information on what it looks like to be in relationship with the unseen creator God – let alone that such a sense is even possible.

And not only would we be lacking imagery on what a human relationship with God can look like, we’d also be lacking imagery (and thus a personal sense) of the eternal-God that the Son-of-God reflects. Jesus shows to us that human relationship with God is possible, and, he shows us who God is. In this sense, Jesus offers to us an eg of the ‘how’ (behind a relationship with God) and the ‘who’ (God is to us).

Jesus, then, is very relevant to our present time personal spirituality.

In Matthew 1:23 is the passage “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel (which means “God with us”).” What if the arrival of Immanuel-Jesus some 2000+ years ago indeed meant “God with us” for those of his earthly time, but also just as much, for our present time – because of the way our understanding of him reveals to us both the possibility of human relationship with God, and the nature of said God.

For this reason, the arrival of Jesus is not just good news for long ago, he is also good news for us today because he shows to us that God (The “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End” God – Rev 22:13), really is with us – right now.

I can’t help but wonder if this is part of the reason for the comforting words Jesus offers to his disciples before his crucifixion: “I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world!” (John 16:33).

Jesus is the reason we really can take heart – now as well as later; although our relationships with God may at times feel out of sight, or apparently far out of reach, the existence of Jesus, and all of the stories that surround him, assure us that although at times we may feel unable to trace the edges of the presence of God (for many different reasons), he exists, he continues to work, and he is good.

The Author

31. Love people and love learning new things about God. Over and out.

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