Wednesday, June 27, 2012

How the Milky Way Galaxy reminded me of Christ's Supremacy

Colossians 1:16-18 by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him.

What it was like to see the Milky Way Galaxy for the first time
One of the greatest memories I have of the enjoyment of God’s creation occurred after a hurricane had passed through where we had lived at in Central Florida.  For over a week we had no power, and so all of the lights in a 100 miles radius were not working.  I had stepped out to get some fresh air and was blown away by the Milky Way Galaxy that stretched from one side of the sky to the other.  For over an hour I looked at one end of the sky to the other.  Despite the destruction around me, I was reminded of the joyful confidence that God through Jesus Christ is still on the throne.

Seeing the Supremacy of Christ the Living WORD
The Book of Colossians is all about showing the supremacy of Jesus Christ in all things.  The last phrase in our text above captures the point of this letter to the Church at Colossae: “so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything.” 

Why Christ the Living WORD is at the center of all things in four words under three headings
As we study the written Word of God, we can summarize it under three headings, utilizing four particular terms.  The Headings we will use are simply how the Bible portrays God and His works as operating with a beginning, middle and end.  With the beginning we assign the term creation (Genesis 1-2).  In terms of the middle part of God's activity revealed in scripture, we assign two main terms: Providence & Redemption (Genesis 3-Revelation 19/20).  Then finally, the Bible reveals one great end to all history into eternity as described by the term Kingdom (Revelation 19/20-22). Common to all these headings and terms is that Christ is at the center. 

The Beginning-Creation = God's beginning of creation through Christ
The first term, creation, deals with the origin of the universe, life and humanity.  We read in 1 Corinthians 8:6 "yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him."
The Middle - Providence = God's means of governing all history through Christ 
The second term, Providence, covers the world after the completion of creation.  God's governing of the world and history through Christ is covered under this heading.  Sin's entryway into the creation was known and ordained by God's permission, however it was not authored by God. 
One of the oldest Baptist statements of faith, explains more fully how God’s Sovereignty and Providence fits together with the purpose of redemption and the presence of evil and suffering:

“The almighty power, unsearchable wisdom, and infinite goodness of God so far manifest themselves in His providence, that His determinate counsel extends even to the first fall, and all other sinful actions of both angels and men.  This is not merely by a bare permission, but by a form of permission in which He included the most wise and powerful limitations, and other means of restricting and controlling sin. These various limitations have been designed by God to bring about his most holy purposes. Yet, in all these affairs, the sinfulness of both angels and men comes only from them and not from God, Who is altogether holy and righteous, and can never be the author or approver of sin.”1 (see source cited below)
The most recent Southern Baptist Doctrinal Confession states this truth in the following way: "God is all powerful and all knowing; and His perfect knowledge extends to all things, past, present, and future, including the future decisions of His free creatures." 2(see source cited below)
The Middle - Redemption = God's way of regulating salvation's plan through Christ
The third term, redemption, covers God’s Eternal desire to work forth salvation by the sending of His Son to live, die, rise and ascend and  apply salvation to all who by grace through faith believe. 

The End - The Kingdom = God's reign in bringing creation, providence and redemption to His intended end by Christ
The fourth term, Kingdom, overlaps the first three, communicating the completion of God’s purposes for creation, the defeat of sin and death, the completed purposes of salvation for believers and the return of Christ to bring about the New heaven and New Earth.  The Kingdom is the domain of Christ's activity working invisibly in and through believers and will also be a visible manifested reality at Christ's return.

These four terms, when connected together, communicate the purpose of the Bible: The Enjoyment of the exaltation of God by His people as revealed in the WORD through the Word. Christ is at the center of all of them.  In the beginning He was with the Father in creation.  In the middle He is the One through whom all things consists in providence and through whom the Father's plan of salvation was accomplished.  Then concerning the end, Christ will return to bring to pass the Divine purposes concerning the Kingdom.   
1 1689 London Baptist Confession of Faith
2. 2000 Baptist Faith and Message

No comments:

Post a Comment