Wednesday, December 02, 2020

Your God is too small!

Sure, that's the title of a (very good) book written by J. B. Phillipps (Epworth Press, 1952), but he's correct. How wide is God's plan for salvation? This wide:
Salvation is here conceived as reconciliation or making peace between those who are at enmity, presumably by removing the source of that enmity, namely, sin. Indeed, [Col 1] verse 20 contains the idea of atonement through the blood of Christ; this is how reconciliation is achieved. But in contrast to much Christian preaching, which emphasizes that the blood of Christ was shed for “me” (and we are told to put our name there), Colossians 1 does not myopically limit the efficacy of Christ’s atonement to the individual or even to humanity. Without denying that the atonement suffices for individual people, the text applies the reconciliation effected by Christ’s shed blood as comprehensively as possible, to “all things, whether on earth or in heaven.”

This wording brings us back to verse 16 (just four verses earlier), which affirms that in Christ “all things in heaven and on earth were created.” When Verse 17 goes on to say that “in him all things hold together,” we are warranted in thinking that the reconciliation spoken of in verse 20 continues and brings to completion Christ’s unifying work as creator, which has been disrupted by sin. The point is that redemption is as wide as creation; it is literally cosmic in scope.—J. Richard Middleton, A New Heaven and a New Earth, 158–59

<idle musing>
That's pretty big, isn't it? And you are worried about anything? Then your god (lower case "g") is too small!
<idle musing>

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