We’re glad you’re back for the fourth part of Believe. Believing Jesus is God in the flesh. We hope you’ve gathered a sister or two and brought along your Bible and perhaps a journal and pen.
Father God, Your love for all You’ve created is beyond understanding. But we ask for the blessing of seeing more of it today. Open the eyes of our hearts to help us understand your love for us more today than we did yesterday. Amen.
It took a long time for me to put this Trinity thing together. I didn’t really see Jesus as fully God. After all He was born of a virgin woman, so in my mind Jesus was half God… half human. God was the Creator, the Father… the Boss. Jesus, was His Son, and He was perfect because He obeyed His Father perfectly. Being half God helped Him with His obedience.
When I realized for the first time Jesus was there with God in the beginning, I was astounded. How can a person be fully God and fully human? There are no words to express this mystery.
In Genesis we read, “Let us make man in our image.” God doesn’t refer to Himself as “I” but “we.” What do you think this means? Who is God talking about?
God clearly refers to Himself as a community. The church calls this community the Trinity: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Jesus was with God before the very world was formed because Jesus is fully God.
Read: John 1:1-5
John describes Jesus as the Word. He was with God and He was God. Jesus, the Word, was with God in the beginning. He is part of the “our” God spoke about in Genesis. In fact, it was through Jesus the entire world was created.
Consider this for a moment. God spoke the world and everything in it into being. He did not mold it from clay or transform it from molecules floating around in space. God spoke and creation happened.
Since Jesus is the Word, God spoke creation into being through Jesus.
Do you recall the Scripture we read last week from Luke? Let’s look at it again.
The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.
—Luke 6:45 ESV
God spoke creation into being out of the abundance of His heart. Jesus is the overflowing language of God. Every attribute of Jesus, His grace, love, and mercy, are all found in the overflow of God’s heart.
What do you love most about Jesus? What does this reveal to you about God’s heart toward you?
This epiphany hit me last week as I was preparing for our study. Jesus was and is the very word God speaks. It was like dots connecting on a page for me. God’s heart overflowing with Christ, our Savior, to the point He speaks it into creation. Then I imagine this continuing today… God speaking from His heart over my life and circumstances. I told the sister, “I am undone!”
And I’m still undone with this thought too wonderful to describe. I find myself saying Habakkuk’s words in response: “Look among the nations, and see; wonder and be astounded. For I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if told.”
Unlike Stacy, I simply accepted Jesus as fully God and fully man. Did I fully understand it? No. But when she texted me with the beginning of this epiphany, I had just read the passages for the previous week’s homework regarding what comes out of the human heart. The teaching on We are All Sinners opened the door for me to see Jesus as the expression of the overflow of God’s heart.
God is Love. He created because His heart overflowed love. And out of His mouth spoke the creating Word… Jesus. This has added a level of understanding to Jesus as fully God and fully man I had not seen before. It truly is overwhelming. And in the process of understanding it explains so much.
Colossians 1:15-17 puts the exclamation point on the end of this teaching.
He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together.
—Colossians 1:15-17 ESV
Not only by Jesus were all things created, in verse 17 we read “in Him all things hold together.” The energy it takes to hold the paper together on which these words were originally printed is Jesus. He holds all things in the universe together. Every. Single. Thing.
Is it possible for something in our lives to fall apart? Does this change your attitude about some circumstance you feel is spinning out of control? If you were to completely embrace Jesus as fully God, in whom all things were created and hold together, how would it change your faith?
[Really… take a moment to think about this. Journal your thoughts or share them with your sisters.]
- Jesus was the Word
- Jesus is God
- All things were made through Jesus
- Jesus is light
- Life is in Jesus
- Jesus overcomes darkness
- Jesus’s glory is the Father’s glory
- Jesus is the fullness of grace and truth
- Jesus is God’s Word in the flesh
John says, “the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” What does it mean to you when you consider God wrapping himself in skin and coming to earth? What does it say to you when you consider He chose to come, as a vulnerable, dependent infant?
God made the choice to limit who He was in order to become human… the very thing He created. He took all His power, authority, and glory and laid it down in order to become one of us.
Also on Week 4/Day 2 of our weekly work you were asked to consider the limits Jesus faced in the flesh. What limits did you consider when you thought about God becoming human?
Just this week my nieces, daughter, and I went to the movies. It was a true story about a Ugandan girl from the slums who learned the game of chess. She was brilliant at the game and began to compete on a national level. Competing at such a high level opened her world to things she never even imagined. Airplane rides, beds with mattresses, swimming pools, even ketchup were experiences that took her far beyond her dirt floors, and the ache of her family’s empty stomachs. You can imagine her confusion upon returning home. Her taste of luxury left her feeling out of place in the slums of Uganda.
As I watched I wondered if Jesus felt the same way at times. Did He feel lost in this world He created? He was God living in the slums of this world. This in itself was a great sacrifice. One He made for me out of the overflow of His heart.
All limits were off once Jesus died and rose again. The glory, power, and authority once limited were/are now limitless. We are reminded of this in the story of two men walking home to Emmaus.
The very day of the Resurrection two disciples headed home to Emmaus. They walked and talked about what the women experienced at the tomb. They wondered about those who said they saw Jesus alive. The disciples were upset after witnessing the gruesome death of the man they thought was the Messiah. Jesus joined them on the journey and asked them about their trouble. The disciples shared their story and listened as Jesus talked of Old Testament prophesy, laying out God’s plan there on the road. Yet they still did not recognize Him
Turn to Luke 24:28-32 and read the rest.
Jesus revealed Himself in the perfect way at the perfect time. He could have opened their eyes in the beginning or somewhere along the way, but He didn’t. He knows when and where revelation will serve to increase our faith and grow us closer to Him.
Have you experienced this in your life? Have you found yourself in a place where you didn’t recognize Him only to see Him at work later? How did this strengthen your faith?
In the same way, God knew exactly what was needed to save us… to save the world. He knew it would take Himself being born in the flesh to accomplish what we could not do on our own.
Let’s look at what the Scriptures say about why God became man.
Jesus came to do God’s will.
Jesus came to save the lost.
Jesus came to fulfill the law.
Jesus came to redeem us… so we might become adopted sons and daughters of the King.
Jesus came to bring light to our darkness.
Jesus came to defeat sin in the flesh so we might live in the Spirit.
Jesus came to defeat the enemy and give us abundant life.
How have you experienced Jesus in these ways? How has He defeated your enemy, empowered you to walk in the Spirit, and given you abundant life?
Jesus swept into my life when I was 33 years old and turned it upside down from the inside out.
He opened my eyes to the truth of my blindness. Over the years, He has revealed and healed soul wounds I didn’t know I had. He allowed me to fall for the lies of the enemy leading to a deep pit of fear and then by His grace showed me the way out to an ever widening place of freedom and peace. A place I hadn’t been before.
He brought life and light to my life, when I didn’t even know I was dead and in the dark.
God knew becoming fully human was the only way to redeem the relationship He had with man before the fall. He knew what kind of Savior it would take. It would take Jesus—God incarnate.
This my friends is THE Good News and a reason to celebrate. Next week we will explore our final “rock” when it comes to Believe. Not only did God’s Word become flesh, in His goodness, we have it in written form. This book preserved for thousands of years is a beautiful picture of His grace.
By faith we believe the Bible is God’s Word.
Here’s the link for the PDF of the homework: Week 5-Going Deeper
Have a wonderful week!