25th March 2018

Wings of Desire 

“But Jesus would not entrust himself to them, for he knew all people. He did not need any testimony about mankind, for he knew what was in each person.”
John 2:24-25 (NIV UK)

The other day, a friend of mine gave me a copy of the Wim Wenders’ film Wings of Desire. If you haven’t heard of it, don’t worry—neither had I. The story centres on a group of angels who move through the streets of Berlin, unseen by people around them. These angels, and the audience, are able to hear an almost endless stream of prayers from the citizens of Berlin. The angels experience the hopes, the dreams, and the pain and loneliness of each individual. Whether it’s the wish of an old poet at the end of his life or the dreams of a young mother, or the last moments before a suicide—the angels are there, experiencing every moment. And actively rooting for humanity’s ultimate good.

While of course we know that the concept of ‘guardian angels’ has more rooting in legend than in Biblical exegesis, the film is a profound and spiritually intriguing look through the curtain of this present reality. And in some ways, it gives us a creative understanding of what a heavenly perspective might feel like. But for me, I was struck by just how close the experiences of these angels were to that of Christ Jesus.

Our Lord became one of us, taking on our very nature, becoming fully human while remaining fully divine and one with God. Jesus walked alongside mankind. He suffered blisters on his feet. He was cold when the night came. And he was hungry when he went without food. He experienced the evil in the world and its consequences. He encountered those sinning and being sinned against. He felt the wrenching pangs of compassion for the lost.

We know that he experienced the root of every pain, every hurt, and every joy that is humanly possible. Jesus endured all things to bring us into right relationship with our Triune God. And through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, we know that Christ is with us still.

It can be difficult to picture what exactly that looks like, Wim Wenders’ Wings of Desire isn’t a bad place to start. But we know that through Christ, there is more than hoping. Our King is actively working to bring us and all things into their fulness of being. He is putting all authorities and powers under his subjection. He has conquered evil and death. In Christ we have a sympathetic high priest who is the maker or creator of all things—and who is remaking us and perfecting us, his beloved.

Prayer
Righteous Father, we give you thanks that when Jesus came he already ‘saw’ man. But he also knew man and his potential, and it is that future to which we now look. Help us, too, to ‘see’ what you see and love in your creation, man. In Jesus’ name we pray.
Amen
 

Study by Joseph Tkach

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About the Author:
Joseph Tkach is the President of Grace Communion International (the Denominational name of The Worldwide Church of God UK), and resides in California, USA.

Local Congregation:
You are welcome to attend one of our local Church congregations located throughout the UK and Ireland. For details of your nearest local congregation, check on our website, www.gracecom.church under the ‘Churches’ tab, or ring +44 (0)1858 437099.

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