River Of Life

Ezekiel 47:8,9
“When it reaches the sea, its waters are healed. And it shall be that every living thing that moves, wherever the rivers go, will live.”

Jerusalem sits atop the mountain range known as mount Moriah. The city is surrounded by valleys, and is supplied with water through various springs, because there are no rivers that flow through the city or surrounding hillsides. Ezekiel is seeing into the future, to the time of the millennial reign of Christ. As Jesus sits upon the throne of David to rule the nations, the topography of Jerusalem is changed. A stream flows from the temple of God into the Kidron Valley, then turning south continues past the Hinnom Valley, heading toward the Dead Sea. What Ezekiel is seeing is both literal and symbolical. His vision is a beautiful picture of God, as the Source of life for a world that thirsts for spiritual truth, including forgiveness and salvation.

One day Christ will reign over the earth, and a river will flow from the Temple, supplying abundant food and a source of healing for the nations. While we must wait for that day to ultimately come, much of what is promised is available to those who are in a relationship with Christ.

John 4:14 “. . . but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.”

An open invitation is given to everyone of us to come to Christ and experience true life. Jesus compared a relationship with Himself to a flowing river. Later, Jesus would explain that the source of this life is the Holy Spirit. The more of the Spirit we have the more of the life we will experience.

Take time right now to ask God to fill you to overflowing with His Spirit. As you do, be prepared to lay things aside that might be keeping you from the abundant flow of life He promises.

Pastor Jim

 

The Edge 

Job 26:14
“Indeed these are the mere edges of His ways, And how small a whisper we hear of Him! But the thunder of His power who can understand?”

After describing the power of God in His acts of creation, Job concludes, everything he has ever known about God is but a glimpse of what He is truly like.

Psalms 19:1 “The heavens declare the glory of God; And the firmament shows His handiwork.”

The Palmist declared, God revealed Himself to man in creation. When we take the time to look at the marvels of the universe, we learn much of the nature of God. We are reminded of His power, majesty and even His creativity. Creation, however, is much too limited, it can only give us a glimpse into the character of God.

Psalms 19:7 “The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul; The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.”

Because of the limits of creation, God chose to reveal Himself through His written Word. The more time we invest in getting to know our Bible, the more we will learn of the ways of God. Page after page reveals who He is and how He acts. However, even the Word is limited. The apostle John declared, all the books in the world would not be sufficient to tell the story of who Jesus is and what He has done (John 21:25).

Because of the limits of the written word, the Bible tells us God took on human form so we could see Him as He truly is. Jesus declared, to see Him was to see the Father (John 14:9). It is only by looking at Jesus that we can actually understand the way God feels about man. Story after story, and with each encounter, Jesus shows us something of the nature of God. When He drove men from the Temple, we realize He has a passion against any who would stand in the way of people coming to Christ. When He touched the leper, we learn He loves the unlovable. When He arrived at the funeral for His friend, we learn He has compassion in our times of need. When He multiplied bread and fish, we see He will do whatever is necessary to meet our needs. Each turn of the page, teaches us something else of who God is. Once again, this is but a glimpse into the Eternal One; a shadow of His glory, or the edge of His garment.

Paul declared, by taking on human form, Jesus was in fact setting aside much of His glory. That is one of the reasons behind the writing of the Book of Revelation. It is there, where Jesus clothes Himself again in the garments of glory, and reveals what His human flesh had obscured. Much of His majesty and power had been cloaked in human skin, only to be shed at the resurrection and revealed in Revelation. However, even the Revelation is somewhat limited. It is not until we step out of time and into eternity, that we will see Him as He truly is. At that time, the filter of this life will be removed, and we will know Him as we have been known.

What a glorious day awaits the child of God! A day when we no longer look at God as if looking at an image through a dirty window pane. At that time, all our questions will be answered and we will begin a whole new relationship with Him; where for all of eternity, He expresses the riches of His grace in His acts of kindness.

Until that day, let’s be sure we get to know the edges of His ways.

Pastor Jim