In the light of who Jesus is revealed to be, and what he has accomplished on our behalf that every person might share in his relationship with his Father by the Spirit (John 17:3, John 16:13-15), we must not underestimate the priority of the Who question. As “Christ”ians we don’t believe that just anyone could be and do who Jesus is and what he did in his birth, life, suffering and death, resurrection, ascension and coming again, right? We don’t believe that just anyone could achieve the same outcomes, Jesus is the unique and only begotten of the Father (John 3:16). He is the only human mediator between God and humanity (1 Tim. 2:5). He is the only one to whom every knee will bow and tongue confess that he is Lord, right? (Phil. 2:9-11). This Who is in contrast to the popular “What?”, “How?”, “When?”, “Where?” and “Why? questions that often claim priority. You know what I mean: What will be done about these troubling political and social issues!? How long will the world continue to suffer racial discrimination and injustice!? When will this physical, mental or emotional pain end? Where is the man or woman with the real leadership solution to this COVID mess, and why is it taking so long to get understood, organized and solved?
With that basic understanding of the good news (that Jesus – God himself – is our good news), do you see the qualitative difference the “whose” question can have on your faith, hope and loving? Regarding the politics and social issues of this world, whose world is it? Regarding all physical, mental and emotional pain, whose body and soul is it? With regard to COVID and the disturbance of death it has brought to far too many in this world, whose resurrection from death makes alive? I’m sure scriptures come to mind with regard to those questions, but let me conclude with one set that holds all these together at once:
“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. I also saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared like a bride adorned for her husband. Then I heard a loud voice from the throne: Look, God’s dwelling is with humanity, and he will live with them. They will be his peoples, and God himself will be with them and will be their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes. Death will be no more; grief, crying, and pain will be no more, because the previous things have passed away. Then the one seated on the throne said, “Look, I am making everything new.” He also said, “Write, because these words are faithful and true.” Then he said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. I will freely give to the thirsty from the spring of the water of life. The one who conquers will inherit these things, and I will be his God, and he will be my son.”( Revevaltion 21:1-7 CSB)
Just so we’re clear, knowing whose world it is does not guarantee a life without troubles, pain or suffering for a time in this present evil age, (and that is why I included the reality of death here and now) but it is a sign of where things are headed because of whose world it is. So, whose troubles, pains and sufferings are they, really? Whose world is it? Whose _______ is it?
By Timothy Brassell