17th April 2012

The Gospel of the Fathers

“And the secret is simply this: Christ in you! Yes, Christ in you bringing with him the hope of all the glorious things to come.”
Colossians 1:27 (Phillips Translation)

The Father’s plan of salvation reaches out to all humanity—even when we are dead in sin and could do nothing to save ourselves! Even when we are enemies of God, He loved us and gave his Son for us!

 The Gospel begins with the Father.  He has a glorious plan and purpose for humanity.  He plans to draw everything in heaven and on earth to himself through Jesus his Son, whom He sent to be our Saviour, Redeemer and Friend. Jesus’ sole purpose was to fulfil that plan, and He did so by stepping into time and space, going to the cross, rising from the dead, and ascending to the Father.  As a result of this, we were cleansed, made right and stand righteous before the throne of God.

This amazing plan is outlined in great detail in Paul’s letter to the church at Ephesus:  “How we praise God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we belong to Christ. Long ago, even before He made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes.”  (Ephesians 1:3-10 NLT Italics throughout are mine) 

His unchanging plan has always been to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. And this gave him great pleasure. So we praise God for the wonderful kindness He has poured out on us, because we belong to his dearly loved Son. He is so rich in kindness that He purchased our freedom through the blood of his Son, and our sins are forgiven. He has showered his kindness on us, along with all wisdom and understanding. God’s secret plan has now been revealed to us–it is a plan centred on Christ, designed long ago according to his good pleasure. And this is the plan: At the right time He will bring everything together under the authority of Christ—everything in heaven and on earth. 

That really sounds like a plan, doesn’t it? It is—it’s the Father’s plan of salvation for everyone who will ever live. All of our ancestors, all of our family, all of our friends and all the future members of our clan whom we may never meet in this life! Isn’t that just amazing? 

Tender Father—what can I say about all of this? Your plan humbles me, inspires me and fills me with great joy right now.  It gives me a bright hope for the future. Thank you!

 Study by Cliff Neill

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