Wednesday, May 24
The Great Divide
When we picture Jesus as our bridge to God, it is natural to think about the things that separate us from the Father. Therefore, let’s examine three metaphors that describe the barriers between us and almighty God.
First, we are separated by height. Scripture calls God the “Most High” and describes Him as “high and lifted up” (Psalm 9:2; Isa. 6:1 ESV). He is above creation and unconstrained by gravity, time, or space. Furthermore, He declares, “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways” (Isa. 55:9). Without question, God is above man.
Next, we are separated by distance. Moses experienced God through the burning bush, but even in that holy moment, the Lord warned him not to come too close (Ex. 3:5). Later, when the people of Israel built the temple and tabernacle, God warned them not to enter the Holy of Holies except for a single specific time each year, and then only one person was allowed to enter under strict conditions (Heb. 9:7). There is a distance between man and God that cannot be breached.
Third, we are separated by light and fire (1 John 1:5; Deut. 4:24). We know that staring into a giant spotlight can cause blindness, and standing near a flame can burn our skin. In a similar way, if we were to stand in the presence of holy God, we would be consumed.
Why did Jesus come to us? The reason is that only the perfect, sinless Son of God could reach the Father, come close to Him, and stand in His presence. And, in Christ, we can share in that intimacy.
Tuesday, May 23
Our Bridge to God
The last verse in today’s passage makes a powerful and unequivocal statement. Jesus clearly says, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.”
People have taken exception to that statement for 2,000 years. Some say the Lord didn’t mean for it to be taken literally. Others categorically reject His authority to make the claim at all. However, as believers in the lordship of Jesus Christ, we must take what He says as truth. So let’s think for a moment about the word picture in that verse.
When Jesus calls Himself “the way,” many people imagine a one-way street. They take this to mean that there are lots of roads, but He is the only one that leads to the Father. That’s a good image, but I think we can do even better.
I like to think of Jesus not as a road but as a bridge—our bridge to God. Consider the apostle Paul’s warning in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (emphasis added). The picture here is of a great chasm between us and God, and we cannot make it across. Unable to bridge the gap, we fall.
So, what is the only way across a chasm? A bridge, of course. And that’s what Jesus is for us. He stands in the gap, providing safe passage across the void and into the loving arms of the Father.
Meditate on this mental image. When we imagine ourselves helpless and lost—with heaven just out of reach, beyond a great divide—we can begin to appreciate the true power of the cross.
Monday, May 22
In the Fullness of Time
In eternity past, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit planned and created heaven and earth. Yet even before Adam breathed his first breath, the Lord knew sin would enter the world, causing mankind to be separated from Him. However, a plan for our redemption was already in place, and in the fullness of time, the Son of God came as a baby and lived on the earth.
The Lord doesn’t do anything haphazardly. Every plan of His is predetermined and meticulously carried out at just the right time. And this truth doesn’t apply to just the big events in human history. Since He has a specific plan for every believer, He works to accomplish His goals in each Christian’s life. He ordained the day of our birth, has complete knowledge of what each day will hold, and knows how long we’ll live on this earth. And just as He did when Christ was born, God will, in the fullness of time, execute each part of His will for your life and mine.
However, although His plans for us are good, the only way we’ll see His purposes fulfilled in our life is by submitting to Him. He’s promised to work all things for our good when we love Him and are called according to His purpose (Rom. 8:28).
Are you letting the Lord have His way in your life? Even when the need seems urgent, a person with a spirit yielded to God waits patiently for the heavenly Father’s plans to unfold at just the right time. The One with complete knowledge and wisdom knows what He’s doing. Wait for the fullness of His time.
Used with permission from In Touch Ministries, Inc. © 2009 All Rights Reserved.
For more Biblical teachings from Dr. Charles Stanlely, visit www.intouch.org