Category Archives: Devotions: Adoration of Jesus

Regular posts that aim to focus on Jesus Christ and bring adoration to His name.
Fix your eyes on Jesus…

Word made Flesh

John 1:1-3 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. NIV

John 1:14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. NIV

Christmas, for those who are of the House of God, is a time to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. Even those who are not of God’s House but who have a sense of religion will join with us at this time of year in giving recognition to the event of Jesus’ birth through the playing/singing of carols etc. In the Christmas hymn by Charles Wesley “Hark the herald angels sing” the second verse declares:

Veiled in flesh the Godhead see
Hail the incarnate Deity
Pleased as man with man to dwell
Jesus, our Emmanuel

The theme resounding from heaven is that God has come to the earth and He clothed Himself in sinful humanity.1

The incarnation is the greatest of all God’s dealings with humanity because it enmeshes God Himself with human flesh2 – the creator with the created – and through that union brought the means of redemption and the establishment of a New Creation.3

Apostle John makes it clear that in the beginning the Word was with God and that Word was God. That Word descended to the earth and, by the union of Word and flesh, Jesus God’s son appeared;4 fully God and fully man.

At the cross He takes into himself the totality of the sin of humanity and does so in the flesh. Jesus does not simply ‘identify with us’ but rather is us in His humanity and thus, as a man receives the wrath of God for sin – Godforsakenness.5 Through His sacrifice the wrath of God towards men’s sin is appeased.6 And so, as it is written; “He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.” (Rom 4:25 NIV)

Now, through the New Creation established in the Word made flesh, we who are called into that union by the blood of the Lamb, are born again by the Spirit, made New Creations in and with Christ, and become partakers of the Divine nature. 7

The Word made flesh is the God-man Jesus Christ; through the birth of Jesus God becomes a man; through the crucified Jesus God takes into himself man’s sin and deals with Godforsakenness; through the resurrection life of Jesus God justifies man; through the ascension of Jesus God exalts man in Jesus Christ by the Holy Spirit; and any person who is in Christ is a New Creation:

John 1:12-13 … to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God. NIV

Now, as the incarnate God, Jesus is forever the union between God and man who enables us by His Spirit to participate in His divine nature – To God be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever AMEN!

  1. Rom 8:3 …God [sent] his own Son in the likeness of sinful man to be a sin offering. NIV []
  2. Luke 1:35-36 “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. NIV []
  3. Jn 3:3-7; Gal 6:15 … what counts is a new creation. []
  4. Heb 5:5 “You are my Son; today I have become your Father” NIV []
  5. Matt 27:46 Jesus cried out in a loud voice … “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” NIV cf Rom 1:18-32 God gave them over = Godforsakenness []
  6. This is the meaning of atonement or propitiation. cf Rom 3:25; 1Jn 2:2; 4:10 []
  7. 2 Peter 1:4 …you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires. NIV Cf Jn 1:12,13; 2 Cor 3:18; Eph 4:23-24; Col 3:10; Heb 12:10 []

The Point of Creation – I will be their God and they will be my people

Rev 21:3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God.” NIV

From creation to the consummation of all of history the purpose of God has been made clear, “I will be their God and they will be my people”. In Scripture God declares himself to be our reward (Gen 15:1) and that through Jesus Christ we have been called to participate in His eternal purpose (Eph 1:3-14). The greatest aspect of the Father’s purpose in Christ is not that we have ‘eternal life’ or ‘provision’ or ‘power’ but that He would be in us and we would be in Him. The abiding presence of God is the point, the promise, the pleasure, the provision, the power, and the great reward for all who are new creations in Christ.

Jer 31:33 “This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after that time,” declares the Lord. “I will put my law in their minds and write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people”. NIV

The new covenant, which has been written in Jesus’ blood (Lk 22:20), is one of relationship between creator and His creation. Ezekiel 37:27 declares: My dwelling place will be with them; I will be their God, and they will be my people. And Revelation 21:3 speaks of the consummation of history bringing about the fullness of our relationship with the Father.

From Genesis to Revelation, throughout history, we see that God’s presence has always been the great promise and reward for those who are His own. It seems clear that the point of creation has always been that God would dwell with His people. It is one of the great mysteries of the knowledge of God revealed in Jesus Christ that the Father is in Jesus; that Jesus is in the Father and that we are in Him (Col 1:21; Jn 14:20).

The great hope and promise is that when Jesus returns the fullness of salvation will be realised and we will dwell with the eternal Father, Son and Spirit in eternity. This is the objective of creation and our inevitable reward. In anticipation of this, God has sent his Son into the world to redeem for Himself a people who will be called His own. And as a guarantee that we are indeed His possession we have been given His abiding presence, the Holy Spirit. Through the Spirit, the Father and the Son dwell with us today and that presence will remain Emmanuel – God with us.

2 Cor 6:16b …For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: “I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people.” NIV Eph 1:13-14 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession — to the praise of his glory. NIV

Creation to Consummation

Rev 22:12-13 “Behold, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to everyone according to what he has done. 13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End. NIV

With the present constantly pressing in on us, with all of its immediate demands, it is easy to forget that those who are found in Christ have been called into His eternity. When we consider life and history let us consider it always in terms of ‘eternity’.

Eccl 3:11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end. NIV

Ecclesiastes three points out that within each person’s heart God has placed the sense of eternity. That life is more than the present seems to be an intrinsic part of humanity. Yet to understand eternity is beyond us… except that it is revealed by God.

Isa 46:10 I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say: My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please. NIV

God has spoken from the beginning what the end will be and in this way He reveals His eternal plan in and for creation. To understand the works of God’s hands can only be done through His revealed purpose. God is at work to bring about His ultimate purpose, which will be put into effect in Christ Jesus at the consummation of all of history.

Eph 1:9-10 And he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, 10 to be put into effect when the times will have reached their fulfillment — to bring all things in heaven and on earth together under one head, even Christ. NIV

From creation to consummation Jesus Christ, God’s Son, is the revelation of God for all creation. In my previous devotion ‘God is our reward’, I asked, “How often do we take what is given by God and turn it into something of more importance or value than God himself?” In the same way we should consider our present in terms of its existence in the eternal Father which is revealed in the Son.

Jesus is the alpha and omega, beginning and the end. From first to last we see Jesus. He was in the beginning (Jn 1:1); all things exist in and through Him (Heb 1:2-3); in Him we were chosen before the world began, to be eternal sons of God through Jesus Christ (Eph 1:3-5); and He is the consummation of all of history which will occur at His return (Rev 22:12-13).

The present is nothing more than a part of the journey which takes us into God’s eternal purpose in Christ Jesus. If we are in Christ then we should live the present in anticipation of the age to come. (Heb 11:13-16)

Heb 12:2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. NIV

God is our Reward and our Inheritance Secured in Christ Jesus by the power of His Spirit

Eph 1:4-5 …In love he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will NIV

Gen 15:1 After this, the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision: “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward”. NIV

When the Pharisees chided Jesus because his disciples were picking corn on the Sabbath day – an act that they deemed to be ‘unlawful’ – Jesus replied “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. The Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.” (Mk 2:23-27)

There is an important principle here that reflects the heart of fallen humanity and our propensity to fall short of God’s glory. The Jewish people were given many signs as indicators of God’s presence with them. Yet rather than honouring God in their midst they instead gave honour to the symbols. How often do we take what is given by God and turn it into something of more importance or value than God himself? Some insist on ‘keeping the Sabbath’ though it is a type of entering into rest which is found ‘in Christ’ (Heb 4); others insist that Mary is to be venerated even though Jesus himself responded to the cry “blessed is the mother that gave you birth” by saying “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it.” (Lk 11:28) Some give modern Israel the centre of attention and pay tribute to natural Jerusalem even though such a view conflicts with the gospel of Jesus Christ. The Apostle Paul declared that the seed of Abraham is not natural Israel, but Jesus Christ and, by extension, all who are found ‘in Him’ (Gal 3:16).

Do we believe – or rather hope – that health, wealth and happiness is God’s great reward?

Heb 11:6 And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. NIV

No, there is only one eternal reward for us to seek and to receive, that reward is the presence of God who declares, “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” (Jer 29:13)

What do you seek; rewards from a loving God, or the loving God of heaven?  Is Jesus a means to health, wealth and pleasure; or is His abiding presence reward enough? Let our prayer reflect our desire for the reward of heaven, the abiding presence of God in Christ Jesus.

Rev 22:20 …Amen. Come, Lord Jesus. NIV

Luke 6:35 Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High NIV