September 03, 2008

The God of the Gospel

Philippians 1:3-4

I thank my God every time I remember you.
Philippians 1:3


I’ve often been reminded that the gospel message is all about people. I tend to agree, but only if it is first of all about three Persons: the triune God—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Paul reveals that his memory of the Philippian believers leads him right back to their Creator, Savior, and Counselor.

The gospel begins with the Father, God for us. God revealed his loving character to Moses: “I have indeed seen the misery of my people … I have heard them crying out … and I am concerned … So I have come down to rescue them” (Exodus 3:7-8). The Father then sent Jesus, God with us. Because he deeply loves his people, Jesus offers the invitation: “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28). Today we receive God’s love through the Holy Spirit, God in us! The Bible asks, “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God?” Then the Bible also affirms for us, “You were bought at a price. Therefore honor God” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20).

The Christian gospel reveals the compassion of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit toward all people. Therefore, we can ask, with Romans 8:31, “If God is for us, who can be against us”? This God does not need explanation so much as he deserves our joyful adoration.

Dear Lord, I delight in who you are. I stand in awe that you are slow to anger and abounding in love. Guide me to live daily in joyful gratitude for your compassion. Amen.

About the author — Calvin Hoogendoorn

Rev. Calvin Hoogendoorn serves as senior pastor of First Christian Reformed Church in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Previously he served two churches in Illinois. He and his wife, Carla, have three daughters.

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