A Friend of Jesus
WHO DONE IT?
Updated: Dec 31, 2021
My mother used to love mystery novels and mystery movies. She loved the challenge of figuring out the plot - who did it! She was pretty smart and many times had the plot figured before the end reveal. I too enjoy a good mystery, and sometimes I get the plot figured. I'm not nearly as smart as mom was. I also remember playing clue. It was through guessing and being shown evidence to the contrary that gave us the answer to who committed the murder.
I started thinking about the mysteries of God last week. So much about our Creator that we do not know and so much of what we do know is shrouded in mystery. The Bible tells us that with God all things are Possible. So even things like time travel for example are possible because it falls into the realm of "all things".
Nearly every story you read in the Bible is a mystery. How did Moses part the waters? How did manna appear every day for 40 years? How did the widow's small amount of oil become enough jars for her to sell and pay off her debt? How did a donkey talk? How did the sun move back in the sky or stand still for a whole day? Answer, with God ALL THINGS are possible. Stories like these and more are what many non-believers call myth, but faith in God tells me that these things happened. Without faith it is impossible to please God.
Abraham believed God would give him a son by Sarah even though they were old. He believed ALL that God promised Him. Abraham served God and had faith long before the promise. He was upright man who honored God. God was as mysterious to Abraham as He is to us, yet he recognized the incarnate God. How did he know the travelers were of God? Faith is the one thing that God asks of all of us. What makes faith so difficult for some?
God's mysteries are unsearchable. We don't have the ability to think like God does because our lives are limited to what we see here on earth or what we know to be true about God and the heavenly realms. There are some things that we have been told through scripture, but many things that keep us in awe and wonder of what we will see when Jesus returns for his Church, and then later what the millennial kingdom will be like, and after that a new heaven and new earth.
One of the biggest mysteries to me is forgiveness. I am a sinner. I do not deserve God's grace or forgiveness. Jesus was perfect and yet he paid the price for all of my wickedness. To humans, this seems ridiculous, like it can't possibly work. But it does, and again it is faith that makes it happen. God did his part. He came, lived a perfect life and then willingly submitted to a horrendous death for payment of ALL the sin in the world. It is by faith in God that his ultimate sacrifice was all that we needed to be reconciled to him. We don't do anything, not even water baptism is needful. We just have to have faith. It is a wonderful amazing mystery.
Imagine Jesus telling the story of the prodigal son. He knew he was revealing the mystery of God's love for us. We are ALL prodigals. We do our own thing and leave our heavenly father for the lust of the flesh. Eventually those things we run after leave us destitute and alone inside. We know that life in service to God is better than the life we have built for ourselves. So we return to God, humble and ready to accept punishment. What does God do? He sacrifices his prize lamb and throws a party. Do we deserve a party? No, not really, but grace is never about what we deserve. Grace is about a love so deep that it overlooks the wrong and sees only joy and happiness at the reconciliation of father and child.
Imagine Jesus running with his arms open wide to embrace you!
Imagine Jesus being overwhelmed with joy when you return to him. His sacrifice was worth it to save you and bring you back into a relationship with the father. Mystery for sure. Mind-blowing that the God of Creation should care so much about us to make that sacrifice. How big does His love have to be to put to death His own innocent son in order to redeem those who are guilty of that death.
Luke 15:22-24 “But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate. For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate."
John 1:12-13 "Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God."
John 3:16 "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life."
Romans 11:33 "Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out!"