Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Marvel at Christ's Power and Glory

"I have looked upon you...beholding your power and glory" (Psalm 63:2)

I'm not much of a baseball fan. But I'm beginning to understand why it's so appealing. I was sitting on my futon a couple days ago watching a little of the Sox, or maybe it was the Cubs, I don't remember which (I could get in trouble for saying that). And I was remarking to Sara about the futility of our culture throwing millions of dollars at this meaningless sport. These guys are paid so decadently just to be really good at hitting and catching a ball and scoring points.

But then it occurred to me that a big reason for their bloated salaries is that millions of people pay to see them play. Why? Power and glory. It's really awesome to behold these feats of athleticism: The power of a pitcher hurling a ball with tremendous control, speed, and accuracy; The glory of a batter's hand-eye coordination working with his well-developed muscles so that his bat connects with the ball, sending it soaring like a comet over the field to be either plucked from the air with one hand by a well-trained outfielder or welcomed by happy fans. The more I watch sports now, the more I see the reason millions of people are okay with these athletes being paid millions of dollars. They love to see strength and beauty, power and glory.

This is the common thread woven through the fabric of humanity, we love to see and marvel at power and glory. Whether it's athleticism, movies, good books, good music, good food, history, going for walks or hikes, scuba-diving, astronomy, philosophy, theology... people have an innate longing for greatness, for action, adventure, beauty, harmony, strength, splendor, power and glory. Why? This common craving is due to the Creator we all have in common.

Since we know that there is power and glory to be beheld in the creation, then how much more is there to see in our Creator? For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world in the things that have been made. (Romans 1:20) This common yearning in our hearts for strength and beauty has been sown into our fabric by an all-powerful, infinitely glorious tailor, Almighty God. Ultimately, we all want to see greatness because we were made to see it in God.

Where's the best place to look for greatness, to find your hunger for God's power and glory satisfied? God in the flesh, Jesus Christ. He is the perfect, eternal self-expression of God, the Word of God. The Bible says, In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God...And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1:1, 14) That's why the story of Christ's life and death and resurrection is called "good news," or "the gospel," - in it we see the power and glory of God.

If you trust Christ to be your own Lord and Savior and Treasure it's because he has opened your eyes to see his glory in the gospel. For God, who said, "Let light shine out of darkness," has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. (2 Corinthians 4:6) If you don't yet trust in Christ, or aren't sure about all this, I plead with you to just ask God to show you his power and glory in Christ, and then look for it in the Bible. The light of the gospel of the glory of Christ is more powerful and beautiful than anything in this world. You haven't seen beauty until you've seen God's steadfast love for sinners demonstrated on Christ's cross. You really haven't lived until you've admired Christ coming to life again victorious over death. That's why the Apostle Paul says this is of utmost importance. He says:

Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you-- unless you believed in vain.

For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures... (1 Corinthians 15:1-4)

We all want to see greatness. We were made for it. But we can't even live to see it until we see the power and glory of Christ in the gospel. Look to Christ today, friend. Turn from your sins and believe this marvelously good news.

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