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<< Discover the Book, with Dr. John Barnett

Discover the Book - Apr. 12, 2009

  • 2009 Apr 12
  • COMMENTS
 

The Greatest Power of All

When Jesus stepped from the Tomb on Resurrection morning, God unleashed the greatest power of all.

Often we fail to understand the magnitude of what really happened. Here is what had changed -- after the Resurrection Jesus was no longer limited to one location. Jesus could be at anytime with everyone in anyplace. Think of all of Christ's power we see in the Gospels available everywhere and all the time! That was God unleashing Jesus Christ to be everywhere available!

From the Manger to the Cross Jesus had been for 33 years in only one place at one time . He had humbled Himself, He had emptied Himself, and He had limited Himself. He was localized, operating in one place at a time .

Even in this condition of being localized, Jesus accomplished more than any human ever has or will. He grew up perfectly, mastered God's Word perfectly, and related to His family, friends, and neighbors perfectly for 30 years.

Then at the dawn of His Public ministry He obeyed God perfectly at His Baptism, He defeated Satan's advances perfectly in the Wilderness, and He began to serve God's will perfectly as He set out as an itinerant preacher.

For 3 ½ years Jesus awesomely served in the power of God.

  • Wherever He went Christ's very Presence made sure that death fled, disease faded, and despair melted.
  • Broken bodies that came in contact with Jesus were mended, ruined lives repaired, sightless eyes restored, empty ears filled with sound, missing fingers returned, and hungering lives satisfied.
  • Everywhere He went, wherever He was, whenever He was there the Presence of Jesus meant - death, disease, and despair were no more. But Jesus only did that from being in one place at a time.

As far as we know Jesus only ventured outside the borders of tiny Israel but once, and then it was quite a brief stop in the north to help a troubled woman. Crowds came to Him, multitudes flocked to Him, and none were disappointed - He helped them all. But sometimes the crowds were so great that people were pressed out and had to resort to digging through rooftops, climbing trees, and reaching down through the feet of the crowds just to grab the tassel of His robe. All this because He was just One person who was limited to being in one place at a time.

Yet everything Jesus accomplished in one place at a time couldn't be all written down. It was amazing to see that which was captured for us in the Gospels. So much done so powerfully by One person, in one place at a time .

By now after having said it so many times, you have probably caught the drift of where we are going. As we step into the Garden that surrounded the borrowed Tomb on Resurrection morning - something has wondrously changed. Jesus is no longer trapped by time and space to be in one place at a time. He seems to be everywhere at once.

 

For the next forty days we find that Jesus crisscrosses the tiny land of Israel from north to south.

We find Him on mountaintops, back roads, inside locked rooms, on the shore, and everywhere else that He is looked for or needed.

He meets the grieving women at the Tomb, comforts the sorrowing Mary, calms the frightened disciples inside the locked room without opening the door, shows up at dawn on the shores of the Sea of Galilee, confronts and restores a soaking wet Peter, assures a doubtful trembling Thomas, visits with everyone of the 500 others who had believed on Him.

All that in an occupied country crawling with spies, soldiers, and religious leaders filled with hatred.

And for forty days after the Empty Tomb, He is never seen even once by any unloving eyes, He is never touched even once by unloving hands. Christ's Presence was available unstoppably - everywhere.

Now think again with me about Resurrection morning. The Empty Tomb meant something had changed. It was Christ's availability. For 3 ½ years anyone who could find Him could have any need met, any fear removed, and oppression lifted, any chain broken, any defilement cleansed away… if you could find Him.

Jesus solved all problems by His presence. Jesus came to people where they were and one by one transformed them. But Jesus was only in one place at one time.

But after the Cross and Empty Tomb, Jesus was available anywhere, anytime, by anyone. So - any sin could be forgiven, any doubts could be overcome, any sadness could be comforted, any disappointment could be stopped, any fearfulness could be arrested, any loneliness could be ended, any defilement could be cleansed…anywhere, anytime, and by anyone!

Just think what He can do now that He is available anywhere, anytime, and by anyone. Wherever you are Jesus is passing by right now. He is offering you salvation. Pause on Thomas.

"Thomas is our pattern. Thomas had not been present on that first occasion when Jesus appeared to his disciples. The others told Thomas about it afterward, but Thomas replied, "Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe it" (John 20:25).

A week later Jesus appeared again, Thomas being present, and offered to fulfill the conditions of Thomas's test. But the mere sight was enough for Thomas. Thomas fell at Christ's feet and worshiped, saying, "My Lord and my God" (v. 28).

Is that sight not clear enough for you also? Are Jesus' wounded hands not evidence enough for you of his love? God says that his action in Christ is perfectly clear, so much so that there is no excuse for a failure to believe it. In fact, he says that the way of salvation in Christ has been "made known" (Rom. 3:21). The way of salvation has been made as clear as a striking hand or a blow to the face.

Today it is the hand of a gracious God who holds out the way of salvation to you. If you reply that you cannot see it, he asks you to look at the hand itself; for it is a wounded hand, one bearing the print of the nail received by Jesus in dying for your salvation.

By faith you may put out your hand and touch that wound. You may know that it is evidence, irrefutable evidence, of God's great love for you. That hand was struck for you.

The one extending that hand died for you. Allow him to enclose your hand, to enclose you, and to bring you into that great company of those who possess eternal life and who shall never perish."

This devotional can be read or heard in its entirety by copying this URL into your browser bar: http://www.discoverthebook.org/sermons_read.asp?id=723

 

For more from Discover the Book Ministries, please visit discoverthebook.org
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