July 02, 2014

The Story of What God Has Done

Romans 5:1-8

God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
—Romans 5:8


Did you know that the Bible is not simply a book that includes a lot of stories but that the whole Bible itself is one big story? It’s the story of what God has done in creation, what we did to sabotage his efforts, and what God is doing now in his vast, eternal plan to fix what we ruined. The main character is always God.

This is important. Christianity is the only faith in which God is the one who does the heavy lifting. Every other religion, in­clud­ing atheism, ultimately comes down to a set of instructions for what people need to do to make things better. In the history-spanning drama that brings the Christian gospel to the world, however, God is the main actor, and we play only supporting roles. Jesus Christ entered our world and carried the burden of everything that had gone wrong.

So the Bible is the account of what God has done. It’s a grand story with supporting materials. While it includes plenty of foundational doctrines and important ethical teachings, the most important thing about the Bible is that it tells us what God has done. That makes it a story, the greatest story of all time.

When you read the Bible, I encourage you to read it as a book of what God has done, not a book about what you should do.

Lord, open our eyes to the story of what you have done—and to the fact that you have done so much for our sake. Surprise us again with all that you are doing in our lives. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

About the author — Ron Vanderwell

Ron Vanderwell recently became the senior pastor of New Life Church in New Lenox, Illinois. He has been a pastor for 22 years, serving as a church planter for the previous 12 years at The Gathering in Sacramento, California, and before that as a pastor in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Ron and his wife, Deb, have three sons: John, Adam, and Jake. Ron shares more of his reflections on “squinting” for God in his blog at www.squintforgod.com.

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