January 13, 2009

Heaven Came Down

Colossians 2:6-15

In Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form …
Colossians 2:9


In Paul’s day false teachers had infiltrated the Colossian church and were teaching that Jesus was far from unique. They claimed there were many mediators who could build a bridge between earth and heaven. Each possessed a slice of divine fullness, they said, a spark of deity that could connect mere mortals with God.

Paul disagreed. He declared that in Christ the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form. Paul used a word for “live” that means “take up permanent residence.” In Jesus Christ, the eternal Son has taken up permanent residence as God “in the flesh.”

This teaching is the central scandal of the Christian faith. There is no way to minimize this shocking news at the gospel’s core. The Christian faith teaches that God has “moved into our neighborhood” in the person of Jesus Christ. Jesus, the incarnate Son, knows what it means to be dead tired at the end of a full day of work. He knows the misery of the flu and the shooting pain of a toothache. He experienced all that and more so that, in his own person, he could bridge earth and heaven.

Here is the good news: Jesus Christ is able to bear our guilt because he is fully human! And he is able to carry that load of sin because he is fully God!

Come near to Jesus in faith. After all, in his incarnation he has drawn near to you.

Lord, thank you for emptying yourself of divine glory to enter our world. We give ourselves to you, knowing that through you we may enter the Father’s presence. Amen.

About the author — Bob Heerspink

Dr. Robert Heerspink was director of Back to God Ministries International from 2006 until 2011, when he passed away. He had previously pastored several Christian Reformed churches. Bob loved to write and was a frequent contributor to the Today devotional.

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