Perusal* – Spring 2015

(* perusal; to examine or consider with attention and in detail) 

Hebrews 7:25; Consequently, he is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them.

Disease is something all of us suffer.  It could be the “common” cold, the latest strain of flu, or the “emperor of all maladies”, cancer.  Our Creator has formed bodies with an immune system that identifies the invading germ and with laser like precision narrows its attack on the virus or bacteria that are doing us harm.  Except for cancer.  We now know that cancer cells are our own cells that have mutated and grow exponentially, masquerading as good cells and like a machine, methodically killing us from the inside.

Sin is very much like cancers.  Often we do not feel its consequences or see its devastation until far too late.  It is natural to our mortal bodies and minds, so much so that it will bring about physical, but more importantly, spiritual death.  If ignored, or avoided, sin eventually controls us, corrupting minds and bodies with ungodly thoughts and  crippling ends. The triune God knows this so much better than we mortals.  True to His word in Genesis 3 when he promised Adam and Eve they would surely die if they disobeyed His law, He also was true to bring about the cure for our sin, Jesus Christ, God the Son!

We may want to cure dreaded diseases, keep our children from unholy people claiming wrong as right, and stopping pilots from intentionally flying planes into the ground.  We want to, but cannot.  We do not have the ability. We may want to prolong life with no fear of diseases’ consequences.  Scientists and doctors have made great strides to eradicate disease from earth, but new ones arise that will continue to stretch their mental capacitates. Their ability is limited to the one thing that keeps them from finishing their work - their own death.

Jesus is the Christ, the Son of David.  He fulfilled all scripture that pertains to the Messiah (Luke 24:44). His incarnation provided to humanity he is the greatest of all Prophets.  He now graciously is our high priest and will very soon return as King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

Be reminded that there is no resurrection without the ignominious suffering of the cross.  The author of Hebrews tells his readers that our salvation is due to Christ Jesus ability to save, literally our salvation is “fully ended, completed”.  So, it begs the question, what are we saved from…why do we need to be saved?

John Piper writes, “If, to be saved forever, we need Christ to intercede for us forever with God, then what is the implication about what we need saving from? The implication is that we need to be saved from God. Specifically we need to be saved from the wrath of God that burns against all ungodliness and unrighteousness (Romans 1:18). Christ can save us forever from the wrath of God because he intercedes forever with God. He continually puts himself between the Father and us as an asbestos shield against his white-hot anger against sin. Hebrews 10:30-31 says, "We know Him who said, 'Vengeance is mine, I will repay.' And again, 'The Lord will judge his people.' It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God."

Thankfully, the resurrection signaled to all time that the Son of God’s cruel death assuaged God the Father’s intense wrath against sin.  It follows that what Jesus endured on Calvary continues today in God’s throne room of heaven.  His role as prophet was completed on Golgotha’s hill and our Lord is now our great high priest making intercession for his children.  God did that for his children.  He ordained a Prophet and a High priest, God the Son, who lives to intercede.  Jesus doesn’t need to plead his case with our Father. The resurrection proved God’s complete and final acceptance of His Son’s sacrifice and ordained Jesus as our great high priest.

The Gospel is simple in demonstration of faith, but complex in its execution. Simply, the good news is that the just and gracious Creator of the universe has looked upon hopelessly sinful men and women and has sent his Son, Jesus Christ, God in the flesh, to bear his wrath against sin on the cross and to show power over sin in the resurrection, so that everyone who turns from their sin and themselves and trusts in Jesus as Savior and Lord will be reconciled to God forever.”

The execution of the Gospel demonstrates to all that would repent and believe that the love of God rescues us from the wrath of God, in such a way that the justice of God is vindicated and the glory of God is exalted.

The Trinity’s justice was vindicated in Jesus’ death and the glory of God is revealed by raising Christ from the dead.  God is for you and I and wants to be with us.  Do we want to be with Him?  God brings peace in the Gospel of a Person, Jesus Christ.  Hebrews 13: 20 “Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, 21 make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.”

Thankfully, the resurrection accords to believers an able Savior, resurrected and alive forevermore, making eternal intercession before the throne of God.  Jesus prays for us and that secures our salvation!

It is my prayer that the Holy Spirit will reveal the truth of scripture to you this Easter and that you might confess Jesus as Lord and Savior.

The Lord is raised indeed!

Sola Deo Gloria!

Pastor Carey