Monday, November 4, 2013

The Visible Image

I really enjoy reading; especially fantasy fiction.  I like it because it draws me into another world and my imagination takes over as I picture in my mind the scenes described in the book.  In fact, sometimes my imagination can be vivid enough so when I see a movie based on a book I've read, I can be easily disappointed in the contrast between my imagination and the picture on the screen.  But there is something that my mind cannot fully picture because I know it is far greater than anything my imagination can sketch.  It is God in His glory - how is that even possible to imagine?  But  there are wonderful glimpses that the Bible gives us to fuel our hope about the things we cannot see.  It is when we cling to that anchor of faith that our hope in these promises will not fail.  Today, as I begin week 4 in my "Entering Rest" study I want to continue on in Hebrews as we read more about the connection of faith and the promise of God's rest.  Please use the link and read Hebrews 11:1-3.

"Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see."  I like the way the NLT words Hebrews 11:1 - Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen.  What a wonderful definition!  When we have faith, we have the confidence that the promise of being in God's presence will happen.  Our faith truly does give us assurance even though we cannot see God.  We are reminded the heroes in the Bible are commended not for what they did but for their faith - who they believed.  They chose to believe God even though they couldn't see Him; they knew that God was faithful.  It is by faith that we know that what we cannot see is what created everything we can see.  We know by faith that God spoke everything into existence.

As I reading through the material for my small group, I came across these wonderful verses in Colossians 1:15-17 (NLT):
Christ is the visible image of the invisible God.
He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation,
for through Him God created everything
in the heavenly realms and on earth.
He made the things we can see
and the things we can’t see—
such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world.
Everything was created through Him and for Him.
He existed before anything else,
and He holds all creation together.
Isn't that an incredible gift God gave us!  His Word, who created this world, was made human and became the visible image for all that we hope for.  We are told that everything that we see and cannot see were created by Him and for Him and He is the One who holds it all together.  Not only is He the visible image, but He is our salvation - He is our hope.  Even though we are not walking on the earth at the same time He physically walked the earth, the gospels give us a clear and visible image through Christ of who God is.  He is our way into God's presence.

This post is linked with Sharing His Beauty.

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