November 28, 2011

Know and Tell the Whole Story

Colossians 1:15-20; Hebrews 1:1-3

In these last days he has spoken to us by his Son …
Hebrews 1:2


The gospel story can be told narrowly, emphasizing only the center of salvation history: Jesus’ incarnation—the Word become flesh, Jesus’ life and teaching, Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross, Jesus’ victorious resurrection, and Jesus’ ascension and rule at the right hand of God till he comes again.

Yet as Paul writes in Colossians, the gospel, centered in the life of Jesus, has cosmic proportions. This Jesus “is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created … He is before all things and in him all things hold together.” This cosmic Christ is Lord not only of our lives but over all creation. Creation too “will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God” (Romans 8:21).

The gospel of Jesus is about the whole story of creation and how this world belongs to God. It is about the impact on creation of humankind’s fall into sin. It is about Christ’s redemptive work, which redeems not only individuals but an entire creation that groans under the weight of sin. Ultimately, the gospel story is about the restoration of all things in a new heaven and new earth. So when we accept Jesus’ promise of salvation and follow him, we become part of his kingdom, a here and now kingdom that will someday continue in a new heaven and new earth. Are you part of this story and kingdom?

Lord of creation, King of the universe, we bow before you, the one Savior. Teach us to worship and adore you. Thank you for loving us so much. Amen.

About the author — Allen & Lynn Likkel

Revs. Allen and Lynn Likkel have worked in communities across North America for many years—planting churches, nurturing them along, and developing new church leaders. A minister in the Christian Reformed Church, Allen served with Christian Reformed Home Missions for nearly 40 years, and Lynn, also ordained as a minister of the Word, has served to build leaders and new congregations. In November 2010, Allen entered retirement, and the Likkels moved to Washington, their native state. They have four adult children.

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