We struggle to understand God. The challenge is even more apparent as add another dynamic: God in us.
A brief review. Everything begins with God. In the beginning, God. In the beginning, the Word. Eternal existence, no beginning, no end. Above and beyond human concepts of space and time. Above matter, speaking matter into existence. Creative power, creative genius, sustaining the universe. This is God; this is Jesus pre-incarnate.
Then, the Incarnation. At the Christmas season, many think about Jesus and the beginning of his physical life on this planet. This is God with us. The baby in the manger is popular, non-threatening, lovable. But the story of Jesus’ life among us is not complete unless the story of his birth leads to the story of his death. Easter, as a religious event, even more popular than Christmas. Who doesn’t want to be saved? Who cannot sympathize with a suffering Savior? Who is not touched by the passion of Christ? God demonstrates love, he clearly shows how much he is for us.
I wish I understood more fully the significance of eternal existence–the One who is the very image of God, for whom all things were created, the One who now sustains and has always sustained this physical creation (Col. 1; Heb. 1). I wish I understood better the “God with us” dimension of Jesus’ coming. I wish I understood better how powerful is Jesus’ presence right now before the throne of God, the clear declaration that God is for us. I think clearer understanding of “with” and “for” would be helpful in the third dimension of this series.
I also want to understand what it means that he is “in us” or “within” us. Wow! God in us!
Seven well-known texts show us different dimensions of “God in us.” Here are the passages: John 14:23; Romans 8:9, 11; 1 Corinthians 3:16, 6:19-20; Ephesians 2:22; Ephesians 3:17; Col 1:27; 2 Timothy 1:14. What should we see? What conclusions should we draw?
Since God is “in” us, “within” us, how shall we then live? Four truths can be distilled from these seven passages. We live….