4. Witnesses of God

Meditating on the Gems of the Bible:  4. Witnesses of God

1 John 1:1-3  That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched–this we proclaim concerning the Word of life. The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us. We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ.

I suppose ‘Gems’ might refer to verses that stand out in the Bible and the ones above certainly do that. We can perhaps take for granted the most obvious thing that the Bible conveys and that is that God has revealed Himself to mankind. It is not that different human beings have gone looking for God and have found Him, but that God has made Himself known to us.  Initially it was through the nation of Israel and the record of its dealings with Him in a period up to about two thousand years ago. Then it was through His Son, Jesus Christ, and the record of him, in the four Gospels of the New Testament. Finally it was through the Church, some of its representatives and their writings, and the working of His own Holy Spirit in the lives of individual Christians and the Church at large over the last two thousand years.  There has been non-stop testimony if you go looking for it.

But this testimony of the apostle John, written down somewhere in the latter half of the first century AD, has got to be one of the most amazing testimonies ever written down. Admittedly it is couched in language that comes from a Hebrew and Greek perspective – “the Word of life” – but it is so similar to the language of his Gospel that his intent is unmistakable.

In his Gospel he had started out with the same sort of language: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning.” (Jn 1:1,2) Eventually he explained, “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (Jn 1:14) and as he unravels the parcel before us, there is no mistake about the fact that he was speaking about Jesus Christ, the unique Son of God.

For John there was no doubting as he used the Greek concept of ‘the Word’ or ‘the reason’ or ‘the purpose behind all things’ to describe Jesus who was not only “with God” but “was God”. Jesus was God in the flesh. Of that there was absolutely no doubt in John’s mind and his Gospel, written decades after the other three, reveals that on every page.

So then we come back to this incredible testimony in his first letter. If we insert the name of Jesus into it, it becomes even more powerful: “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched–this we proclaim concerning the Jesus Christ. He appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you that Jesus Christ was with the Father and has appeared to us. We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard.

In his Gospel, he picks up things that the other earlier writers had not noticed. They had been so taken up with getting down the bare bones of the story, the basic things that had happened, that they had not dwelt on specific things Jesus had said, as John had in his years of ministry after those three incredible years with Jesus in the flesh. As he got older, John clearly looked back and pondered the things he had seen and heard in those three incredible years  and he realised that Jesus had been giving them indicator after indicator about himself and the others had not bothered with those details. Thus in John we find, in the dialogue in chapter 6, repeated references to him being the bread that had come down from heaven. When Jesus prays in John 17, John remembers Jesus praying, “And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before the world began.” (v.5)  There is no question in John’s mind that Jesus was telling them indirectly (praying out loud before his disciples) that he had always existed there in heaven with the Father.

John is full of this revelation: this Jesus is and was God and what is more  we are so sure of this because we were there and we saw and heard him and we actually touched him, rubbed shoulders with him in daily life, that we know beyond a shadow of doubt that he was a human being but a human being who was God in the flesh. We were there, we KNOW!

What gems these verses are, just sitting there waiting for anyone with an open heart, who is not so perverted by jaded cynicism, so that they can see the wonder of them. How wonderful!

35. Sons of God Revealed

Meditations in Romans : 35:  Sons of God Revealed

Rom 8:19   The creation waits in eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed.

This is a tantalizing verse! I suspect most of us arrive at it, glance at it with an air of puzzlement and pass on rapidly to easier verses. Now there are immediately two ways of thinking of what this verse means: 1. It means the world is watching for us Christians to be revealed as we grow in Christ on this earth, or 2. It means that when we go to glory we will be transformed into something even more glorious (which Scripture does suggest). Perhaps we should add a third possibility: 3. The world is watching to see our transformation as we grow in Christ which will happen in large measure as we allow the Spirit to lead and teach us, but the fullness of the transformation will only come when we pass from this earth into heaven. This third option is what we believe the following verses show us.

But we must remind ourselves that back in verse 17 we read, we are heirs–heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.” Now when we think of Christ’s life on earth it did comprise both suffering and glory. It was only partial glory and Jesus himself indicated it as such, but the fact was that some saw his glory as he ministered and worshipped him. The fullness of his glory is not yet complete because although he was glorified through his death and resurrection, there is a greater glory to be revealed a) when we see him in heaven and b) when he returns and every knee will bow before him.  This receiving glory is thus a partial and gradual thing but, as we said previously, as we enter into the ‘Father’s business’ and share with Jesus in it, we will experience both suffering and glory.

But what an amazing picture: the creation, the world, all of what we would otherwise call ‘nature’ waits expectantly for us to be changed and enter into a greater measure of our sonship.  Do you remember at the Creation, the Lord gave this mandate to man: “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground.” (Gen 1:28) Man’s first act of ‘ruling’ or presiding over as God’s agents, was to name all the creatures: “So the man gave names to all the livestock, the birds of the air and all the beasts of the field.” (Gen 2:20).

However this was followed by the Fall and with that came upset. Man and woman became self-conscious (Gen 3:7), fearful of God (Gen 3:10) and self-justifying and blaming of others (Gen 3:12,13). Further consequences were enmity between mankind, Satan and God on the earth (Gen 3:15), increased difficulty in childbirth and a dominating husband role (Gen 3:16), and the earth running wild to make food producing more difficult (Gen 3:17-19). Previously all creatures had been vegetarian but from then on the ‘food-chain’ that we observe among creatures prevailed. Some suggest that spiritual forces were released that meant shifting of tectonic plates, earthquakes, volcanoes, hurricanes, tornadoes and floods as well as disease and sickness and plague. All of these things came about as a result of the Fall.

The primary reason for what is referred to as the ‘curse’ is that God stepped back and left the earth to mankind to rule. The withdrawal of His presence meant the withdrawal of His life and blessing and yet, the Bible tells us, God was aware of and took account of all these things even before making the world, because giving man free will was essential for him to be fully human, with all that that meant. From before the creation itself, the plan of redemption was there in God’s planning and that was necessary because of the Fall and its effects. So with the Fall we have disruption to the way the earth works and the way mankind work; both are not how they were originally designed to be.

But then comes Jesus and the possibility of salvation, of redemption, and suddenly the earth is starting to be populated by men inhabited by God. The process is dramatic (new birth) but also slow, steady and continuous throughout the human life (sanctification). Suddenly it is a new day with these new God-empowered, God-directed ‘sons of God’, men and women energised by the Holy Spirit, coming to bring something new to the earth. Where they shed light, darkness falls back.

But it is never without resistance for Satan and his minions and the powers and principalities of darkness, press in on those sinful men and men who have not heard of a new way, or who have heard and refuse it.   And so a battle ensues and change is slow, but down through church history these men and women inhabited by God have been slowly revealed for what they are – saints. Twisters, connivers, cheats, thieves, prostitutes, murderers, traitors, abusers, all hear the words of the Christ and are transformed and another ‘son’ is revealed, another light bearer walks on the earth. They struggle to understand who they are, they are slow to understand the wonder of being ‘a son’, and they cannot comprehend the wonder and the potential of who and what God has made them to be. But the world looks on and wonders at every new birth. How will this one develop? What will they contribute to this world to bring light that dispels darkness, what will they say and do that actually changes the world?

Yes we, you and me, are being revealed. Gradually bit by bit we are changing and the likeness of Christ is being seen through us: “And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.” (2 Cor 3:18) Hallelujah!

13. Origins

Meditations in 1 Peter : 13 :  Origins

1 Pet 1:20   He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake.

The Bible sometimes says big things or, if you like, big things are revealed. For example many people think that Jesus came into being when Mary conceived, but Jesus himself made it very clear that he had existed previously in heaven with his Father. You only have to read John’s Gospel to see this again and again as he refers to himself as the one who came down from heaven: For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.” (6:33) and “I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me,” (6:38), and “I am the living bread that came down from heaven.” (6:51) and I know him because I am from him and he sent me.” (7:29), and “I know where I came from and where I am going.” (8:14), and “You are from below; I am from above.” (8:23) and “I am telling you what I have seen in the Father’s presence.” (8:38). Oh yes, the record is quite clear; Jesus came from heaven where he had existed previously. But Peter expands our understanding of Jesus even more.

He was chosen before the creation of the world,” speaks of Jesus being the agreed means of salvation from before Creation. The rest of the New Testament testifies similarly. Jesus praying said, you loved me before the creation of the world,” (Jn 17:24) indicating a loving relationships with the Father existing from before Creation. Paul confirmed that our salvation goes right back before Creation: “For he chose us in him before the creation of the world.” (Eph 1:4) i.e. the Father knew back then, as He looked into the future, who would respond to Jesus when he came. It was then that all the resources of salvation were determined for us, to come through Christ: This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time,” (2 Tim 1:9) and the outworking of that planned salvation would be eternal life: eternal life, which God, who does not lie, promised before the beginning of time.” (Tit 1:2).

In the end revelation Jesus is revealed as the Lamb of God: the Lamb that was slain from the creation of the world” (Rev 13:8) and the result of his work is that many would be written in God’s record of who would eventually be saved – and who would not woud be obvious by their omission: The inhabitants of the earth whose names have not been written in the book of life from the creation of the world.” (Rev 17:8).

The crucial thing that is being displayed in all these verses is that the salvation that Jesus Christ brought, was not something thought up at the last minute, in a moment of crisis, but was carefully thought out by the Godhead before they made anything at all in the material realm. God knew that Adam and Eve would fall, He knew that sin would enter the world and have devastating effects, but having designed mankind with free will, He HAD to allow it to happen and if it was going to happen He had to have a plan to redeem whoever would come.

Someone recently asked, “Why did Jesus comes at exactly the time he came?” Michael Green in his book Evangelism in the Early Church, puts forward a number of reasons why at that particular point in history it was the best time for the Gospel to spread across the world and why the international conditions were just right for Jesus to come down to Israel. The apostle Paul wrote, when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, to redeem those under law.” (Gal 4:4,5) and at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.” (Rom 5:6). When Jesus stood up to preach he declared, The time has come,” he said. “The kingdom of God is near. Repent and believe the good news!” (Mk 1:15) and the sense is that it was ‘the awaited time’ had come. The Jews had been awaiting their messiah for centuries. For four hundred years heaven appeared to have been silent and nothing was added to the sacred record – and then he came! As Peter now said, revealed in these last times for your sake.”

But see there is more than we’ve said. He came but he was also ‘revealed’. Initially at first very few recognised him. Shepherds were sent to see him (Lk 2:8-20), and wise men similarly (Mt 2:1-12). An old man, Simeon, and an old woman, Anna, heralded him in the Temple (Lk 2:25-38) but most didn’t realise who had arrived. The Gospels are accounts of the revealing of the Son of God but it was down to Peter on the day of Pentecost to have the privilege of first publicly proclaiming Jesus as “Lord and Christ.” (Acts 2:36).  From then on, the door of revelation from heaven was open and the truth became clearer and clearer. He is the Son of God. Hallelujah!

8. Revealed

Meditations in 1 Peter : 8 :  Revealed

1 Pet  1:12 It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you, when they spoke of the things that have now been told you by those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. Even angels long to look into these things.

I have to confess to not liking secrets, they smell of division, and yet I recognise that sometimes secrets are quite valid. You keep secret the presents you have bought for a birthday or at Christmas. You keep secret difficult times you may be going through from your young children who could not handle the worry. If you are working on an invention it is legitimate to keep it a secret until you have patented it. If you are planning changes in business or war, it is legitimate to keep the plans secret until they have been finalised and thought through properly. In Britain we struggle with a ‘Freedom of Information’ Act  which is sometimes abused so that people are required to relinquish information prematurely. We also live in an age when ‘leaks’ appear common and someone ‘spills the beans’ before the information is ready to be released.

The prophecies about the Gospel in the Old Testament are God’s ‘leaks’. It was like He was so excited about what the Godhead had planned, that He couldn’t help sharing bits of it with His prophets. But why keep it a secret? Why not come out with it to Abram, say? “In many centuries I am going to send my Son from heaven to reveal my love on the earth and then to die for the sins of the world.”  Why didn’t God say that? Well, I suspect the answer has got to be that it wouldn’t have helped us. We wouldn’t have understood it and we’d still have been sceptical of Jesus when he came and threatened our religiosity.

As Peter continues to talk about the prophets who received the revelations in the Old Testament period he says, It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you.” Now I confess to finding that strange, I’m not sure I understand it, and I haven’t found a commentator who explains it satisfactorily, because he is basically saying that they were told by God that this was for a future generation but in reality they could not have known which generation would enjoy the fulfilment of their words. It has, therefore, to be a general sense that is being referred to, the sense that this is going to happen at some future date.

Possibly an example of this was Balaam who eventually brought a word that is usually taken to refer to Jesus: “I see him, but not now; I behold him, but not near. A star will come out of Jacob; a scepter will rise out of Israel.” (Num 24:17) and then, “A ruler will come out of Jacob.” (v.19) It is a word that is also so dressed up with references to other nations being subjugated that it has to be very much spiritualised to be applied, yet the point is that he does know that it is yet for some time in the future.

These things have now been brought right into the present by the preaching of the Gospel says Peter: when they spoke of the things that have now been told you by those who have preached the gospel.” On the day of Pentecost Peter started his message by a long reference to Joel (Acts 2:17-21), explaining how what was happening was a direct fulfilment of his prophecy. He then cited David’s psalm writing (Acts 2:25-28) that indirectly pointed out the fact of the resurrection, and then about Jesus ascending back to heaven (Acts 2:34,35).

After the healing at the gate called Beautiful, Peter taking the opportunity to preach again declares, “this is how God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, saying that his Christ would suffer.” (Acts 3:18) and “He must remain in heaven until the time comes for God to restore everything, as he promised long ago through his holy prophets. For Moses said, `The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among your own people; you must listen to everything he tells you.” (Acts 3:21,22) and, “Indeed, all the prophets from Samuel on, as many as have spoken, have foretold these days. And you are heirs of the prophets and of the covenant God made with your fathers. He said to Abraham, `Through your offspring all peoples on earth will be blessed.’ When God raised up his servant, he sent him first to you to bless you by turning each of you from your wicked ways.” (Acts 3:24-26). In each case the general teaching followed by a specific example.

Of course Jesus himself on the road to Emmaus said to the two disciples, “How foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Did not the Christ have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?” And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.” (Lk 24:25-27)

The message is very clear: the Old Testament prophecies clearly pointed to Jesus and Jesus and his apostles used that to verify all that had taken place and which we now call part of the Gospel. The angels in heaven were likewise kept in suspense as they looked on and saw what was happening on earth yet the revelation was not given to them but to prophets and then apostles. It’s a Gospel for mankind and it was to mankind that it was shared. Hallelujah!

23. Trial or Rejection

Meditations in Job : 23 :  Trial or Rejection

Job 8:20 Surely God does not reject a blameless man or strengthen the hands of evildoers.

We commented previously that not only is Job being tested, but so are his three friends and so are we when we read about him – and them! In fact the truth is that we are being tested – and revealed – every time we encounter another human being. How do we ‘cope’ with other people? How easy it is to be defensive about other people, or judge or assess them if they don’t quite match up to what we think a ‘nice’ person is, or even ‘our kind of person’ is. If we are Christians it is even easier to find ourselves assessing or judging people because of how they appear to us. We each of us have our ‘theological viewpoints’ (even though most of us would deny we are theologians), because we have certain understandings and those direct us how we should think about others.

Bildad is no different. We’ve seen him throughout Chapter 8, directly challenging Job, and about what has happened to his family. We saw his assessment of what had happened to Job’s children (v.4) even though there was no indication whatsoever that they had been sinning. How often, I wonder, do we jump to conclusions when we don’t have all the facts? One of my favourite short stories by Adrian Plass is about a poor man who wouldn’t take Communion in an Anglican church. The vicar jumped to the conclusion that there must be sin in his life until, when pressed, he confessed he had a hole in the sole of his shoe and didn’t want to kneel at the communion rail so that people would see the hole!

The implication that went with what happened to the children was that Job was to blame for their bad behaviour, because Bildad then went on to explain to Job (as if he needed it explaining) that if you straighten yourself out before God He will forgive and restore you (v.5-7). Of course it was being said as a general principle but Job knew that it was aimed at him. He then called on previous generations (tradition) to confirm what he was saying (v.8-10) and went on to explain that if we drift away from God we can be snatched by the enemy (v.11-19). In all that he is saying, there is either a direct or indirect link between sin and judgment (suffering).  This is Bildad’s world-view and there is a lot of truth in it. The only problem is that chapters 1 and 2 reveal to us that actually sin wasn’t at the heart of all this! This is not happening because Job sinned, because he didn’t!

This is why Bildad now comes to this condemning piece of logic: Surely God does not reject a blameless man or strengthen the hands of evildoers.” God doesn’t reject a blameless man and so wouldn’t dream of judging him with suffering – that’s the implication – so what should follow but which remains unsaid is, “And so, Job, the logical conclusion has got to be you are a sinner and we all know that the only hope for a sinner is that they repent of their sin.” That’s all wrapped up in the implication of what has just been said, and now what follows it: He will yet fill your mouth with laughter and your lips with shouts of joy. Your enemies will be clothed in shame, and the tents of the wicked will be no more.” (v.21,22) Yes, if you repent of your sin then God will make everything right again.

See it yet again, that we have truth applied to a wrong situation. He’s absolutely right, God does not reject a blameless man, but who’s to say that what is happening is God rejecting Job?  For us as Christians the New Testament bears witness that the Lord will never leave us or forsake us (Heb 13:5). If we stumble and fall, Jesus is there interceding for us (1 Jn 2:1). Yes, we can purposefully walk away but while our hearts are inclined in His direction, even weakly, He is there for us and nothing can separate us from His love (Rom 8)

So why is all this happening if it isn’t God rejecting Job? We’ve seen it before a number of times but we need to say it again and again until it has utterly permeated our hearts. God doesn’t reject us but He does try us. Yes, He does put us through trying times so, as James says,the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” (Jas 1:3,4) That is what more often happens when things are ‘going wrong’; the Lord is allowing us to be tested so that we will learn to stand and be strong and remain faithful. Little children want to keep on giving up when things are difficult, but the mature person settles in for the duration, determined that with God’s grace they are going to see this difficulty through.

Trials or tests come in lots of ways in life. In fact one might say they are a necessary part of life. A piano tuner tests all the keys of a piano to ensure they are in tune. A doctor puts a stethoscope to your chest to test that your heart is functioning properly, and takes your blood pressure for the same reason. When a piece of electronic equipment breaks down, the engineer carries out a series of ‘diagnostics’ to find out what has happened to stop it working properly. In each of these instances, a test is being carried out to ensure that whatever it is, is working properly.  We are being tuned by life to function as Jesus. Paul said we are being changed into his likeness gradually by the working of the Holy Spirit (2 Cor 3:18).

The Bible speaks about maturity as something that we are working towards (e.g. Eph 4:12,13, Col 4:12, Heb 5:14). This is what God is doing with our lives – helping us grow up into maturity. How does He know how well we are doing? By putting us through a test! That is what is happening to Job and the only trouble is that his three friends don’t realise that, which is why they keep making a wrong diagnosis. When things go wrong in our lives, do we realise that this is a diagnostic test being carried out in heaven? God’s desire is that a) we learn through it, and b) we pass it with flying colours!  May it be so!

6. Mystery

Ephesians Meditations No.6

6. Mystery

Eph 1:9,10 And he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, to be put into effect when the times will have reached their fulfillment–to bring all things in heaven and on earth together under one head, even Christ.

Films used to sometimes be designated ‘mysteries’ although today they more often tend to be called ‘thrillers’. Mysteries tended to go with such names as Sherlock Holmes or Poirot, or Miss Marple. A mystery was a story or film where schemes and machinations were hidden and were gradually brought to light by the sleuth. A mystery is all about something that was initially hidden but is now being revealed. In Paul’s day there were so-called mystery religions, called that because there was something that was to be revealed only to the initiated, the ‘insiders’ of that cult. Paul uses ‘mystery’ to refer to something that was previously hidden but which has now been revealed for all to see. This is the Gospel of the ‘coming one’, referred to many times in Old Testament prophecies but never quite clear, thus leaving a mystery – who is it, who will it be? Now it has been revealed as Jesus.

The ‘he’ and ‘his’ refers to God in this verse. He has made known His will, or His plan, which had previously been largely hidden. But there is something else very significant here. Paul says that God making known His will was, “according to his good pleasure”. When Jesus was speaking about his miracles he said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this was your good pleasure.” (Mt 11:25,26). Luke picks up what is clearly another incident but where Jesus applies the same words: “At that time Jesus, full of joy through the Holy Spirit, said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this was your good pleasure.” (Lk 10:21). In all three instances the sense is that finally revealing His will to the world brought great pleasure to the Father. It was like He had been sitting on it for millennia but now He could reveal it. Bringing salvation, or at least the means for it, to us brought the Father great pleasure. There is an implied suggestion that He was sad that man had been out of relationship with Him, but now He looked forward eagerly to the wonder of His salvation being revealed to men who would receive it and come back into relationship with the Himself again.

This plan God “purposed in Christ, to be put into effect when the times will have reached their fulfillment”. Put this another way and Paul says that God put this plan in effect – which involved Jesus dying on the Cross outside Jerusalem, when the time was right. Why was the time right? We’re not told but we might suggest a number of things. Michael Green in his book Evangelism in the Early Church suggests there were a number of things that made that time in history one of the best for the spread of the Gospel. It may also be that the time being right also included the right people were on earth for God to use, people who would respond as God wanted then to (e.g. Zechariah, Elizabeth, Mary Joseph, wise men etc. etc.). God knows exactly the right time and that was it! But I’ve led you astray! All that I’ve just said is true except it is not true for here, for there are two sets of words that reveal that Paul has a future time in mind: to be put into effect” and when the times will have reached their fulfilment.” See how careful you have to be reading the Bible! In verse 21 Paul speaks of, “not only in the present age but also in the one to come.” so he clearly has future events in mind. What we need to see is that the work of Christ is an ongoing work and there is much to be achieved.

The Cross, his death, resurrection and ascension were only the start of it. If we take just a few verses of Paul’s from elsewhere we will see this more clearly: Then the end will come, when he hands over the kingdom to God the Father after he has destroyed all dominion, authority and power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death.” (1 Cor 15:24 -26). This all has a time element to it and indicates that this is all yet in the future.

But there is a remarkable end goal that is then revealed in our verses today: “to bring all things in heaven and on earth together under one head, even Christ.The ultimate outworking of the work of Christ is that eventually absolutely everything will be brought under his rule, whether it be angels in heaven or men on earth; absolutely everything will come under the head of the church, Christ.

That is the declared outworking of the mystery that has been hidden and is still hidden from so many unbelieving eyes. The promised work of Christ, prophesied in the Old Testament, has now been revealed and our salvation is obvious. What is not so obvious is that eventually, one day, it will work out so that “at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” (Phil 2:10.11). He will rule over all things. Worship him!