Thursday, November 15th, 2012
The Church (Part 6: A Mystery Club)
And He said to them, 'To you it has been given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God.'
Mark 4:11 (NKJV)
That their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, and attaining to all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the knowledge of the mystery of God, both of the Father and of Christ, in Whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.
Colossians 2:2-3 (NKJV)
And to make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God Who created all things through Jesus Christ; to the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church...
Ephesians 3:9-10 (NKJV)
The church is a mystery club. Famous Christian author J.R.R. Tolkien might call it 'The Fellowship of the King.' Surely he and close friend, C.S. Lewis, are writing all new adventures in Heaven. But we don't have to wait until then to see God's plan for earth. Jesus gave us the answers:
'The mystery which has been hidden from ages and from generations, but now has been revealed to His saints' (Colossians 1:26). Nevertheless, understanding is a process, and your pastor leads the hunt for truth.
How? 'To make known the mystery of the gospel' (Ephesians 6:19)--boldly. Of this job, Paul said, 'I am an ambassador in chains' (Ephesians 6:20). 'I am under compulsion; for woe is me if I do not preach the Gospel' (1 Corinthians 9:16).
Surely, church pastors feel the pull of chains, too. But to whom are they chained? To God or to man? To the revelation of His teaching or to people-pleasing preaching?
Consider an interesting irony: to shepherd an enlightened congregation is to run a profitable business--if the profit is seen in truth. Because an enlightened congregation is valuable to God.
Therefore, the work of the church is to make known the 'Image of the invisible God' (Colossians 1:15), to make known the King named Jesus, to make known the 'Manifold wisdom of God,' by explaining the mystery of life--by His Word.
Jesus concurs: 'Whatever I tell you in the dark, speak in the light; and what you hear in the ear, preach on the housetops' (Matthew 10:27).
The mystery ended with Christ. It must be revealed by us. We are the church.
To Be Continued...
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the The Church series.