Wednesday, October 14, 2020

The Biblical Background of 'The Small Catechism,' Part 30

More Than Chickens or Maseratis

From my morning quiet time with God: [Jesus said:] "For my Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day...No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them,and I will raise them up at the last day..." (John 6:40, 44)

These are comforting words, originally spoken to a disbelieving crowd who wanted Jesus to be a king who did their bidding, like modern day political candidates pandering for votes. But Jesus wasn't out to win a popularity contest. He was offering all of us more than "a chicken in every pot and a Maserati in every garage."

He was telling the disbelieving crowd--and you and me--the truth: Born with the fatal preexisting condition of sin, we cannot save ourselves from sin, death, and condemnation. Without His help, we may get chicken-filled pots and Maserati-filled garages, but it won't "cure" us. The wages of sin is still death and there's nothing we can do to avoid getting the payment we desrve.

But Jesus came into the world so that all who turn to Him in recognition of their need of saving and of Him as the one Who can save them will be raised from the dead to live with God eternally. Despite what we deserve--condemnation, Jesus covers those who trustingly turn to Him with His goodness, His righteousness.

This good news--what the Bible calls "gospel"--is more than simply a comfort for life beyond the grave. The gospel empowers us for the living of each day on this earth. When eternity spills into our lives, God enables us to live with joy, peace, a sense of purpose, and compassion for our neighbors. When you know that Christ has secured the perfect, eternal sequel to this life, it changes how you approach this "prequel."

As God the Father prompts us by the power of God the Holy Spirit speaking God's Word, we can turn to Jesus and live with God...even today. Thats comforting.