The True and Better

Re:Verse passage – John 14:6 (day four)

As we consider what it means to be made in the image of God, it’s right that we first understand the God in whose image we’re made. We begin this study by going back to the beginning – but not to Genesis. We’re going to the beginning described in John 1, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” Christ the Son is God’s gift to us, co-eternal with the Father, he is God made manifest in human form that we might know God – his substance, his character, and his love.

In Romans 5 and 1 Corinthians 15, Paul paints a picture of Christ as the true and better Adam. Through Adam came death, but through Christ, the true and better Adam, the firstborn of all creation, came the resurrection of the dead. In him we see the fulfillment of God’s perfect plan. In Christ we see the truest human to ever live.

Because of Christ, 2 Corinthians 3:18 is our reality, “But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.”

May Christ, the true and better Adam, transform you into his likeness. Glory to glory.

Already

Re:Verse passage – John 14:6 (day three)

“Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through me.’”

This verse might seem at first blush to be a statement from Jesus that he occupies the role of gatekeeper, fervently guarding access to God lest any undeserving ne’er-do-well slip through security and gain proximity to God without proper authorization. What’s actually happening here, though, is that Jesus is removing the barricades that people run into when they wonder about God: am I someone God would love as is? What if God is so removed that he can’t be found? Who am I? How do I know I even matter? To all these pressing questions, Jesus says, “You deeply desire to find acceptance from God. Look at me; take my hand; you’re already there when you do.”

Jesus is Life

Re:Verse passage – John 14:6 (day two) 

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.”

As we embark on this thirteen week study of the exploration of life, and how we are created to live fully, it is so wise that we begin with the author and perfecter of our faith, Jesus. Jesus, the Word become flesh, who was with the Father at creation when we were spoken into creation, declares for all the he is life. There is no equivocation, no alternate route, no misunderstanding. Jesus is life. C.S. Lewis would refer to passages like this in his Mere Christianity when he states that Jesus is either who he says he is or he is a mad man. There can be no in-between. If we want to fully understand life, and who we were created to be, we must begin with Jesus. No other model will measure to him. As we walk through this summer series, would you consider Jesus as your reference, your guide, and your help in understanding who you were created to be?

Re:Verse Blog – 5/27/24

Re:Verse passage – John 14:6 (day one)

Join us as Senior Pastor Chris Johnson, Associate Pastor Aaron Hufty, and Associate Pastor Bryan Richardson walk us through John 14:6 in our Summer Re:Verse Series: “IMAGO DEI – What it means to be human.”

To watch the Re:Vlog video, Click Below:

The Hardest Job

Re:Verse passage – Proverbs 31:10-31 (day seven)  

Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain,
But a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised. vs 30

Peter Drucker (management expert) once said that the four hardest jobs in America are president of the United States, president of a university, CEO of a hospital, and pastor of a churchI do not doubt the first three have their share of difficulties, but I know and have seen the difficulties in pastoring a church. I am grateful FBCSA has a great pastor and pastoral staff, aren’t you?

But do you know who bears the brunt of the difficulties of this job? The spouses of these ministers. We (the ministers) wear many different hats, we are often busy on major holidays, and we work very, very odd office hours. It is our spouses who feel this weight more than any one else. Without their support and encouragement, we could not do what we do! These women (who fear the Lord) deserve praise!

So if you see a pastor’s wife today, make sure to thank her for all that she does!

Contributor

Re:Verse passage – Proverbs 31:10-31 (day six)

The “Woman of Valor” in Proverbs 31 is not a consumer. That much is clear. Consumers always look to add to their portfolio. If they don’t feel like they get what they are entitled to, they move on to somewhere else. Not so with the “Woman of Valor.” She takes the raw ingredients she has received and puts them to work,  producing a return for everyone around her.

Wisdom is not passive. It does not wait to be served or complain about what it deserves. Instead, it actively works, not for personal gain, but for the betterment of others. Wisdom is not a bystander; it is a contributor.

Are you a consumer or a contributor?

Cause

Re:Verse passage – Proverbs 31:10-31 (day five)  

When we read, listen, process, and ponder, we like to have our information given to us in this order- cause then effect. The cause sheds lights on all the listed effects. There’s less tension. Fewer needed questions. Minimal investigation.

Here, in this last chapter of Proverbs, the writer goes from effect to cause. Did you feel and sense the pressure and suspense created by this reordering?  Who lives like this?  How is a life like this possible?  I don’t think I can do half of these things. The effects are crystal clear- spelled out in a beautifully written acrostic poem. So, what is the cause? We are now on the edge of our seats. Verse 30, “a woman who fears the Lord”.  Someone who has an abiding and reverent obedience to God through Jesus Christ in the power of the Spirit.

For what God is his wisdom requires of us, that in Christ through His Spirit he also give us. – David Atkinson

Be Thou my wisdom, and Thou my true Word
I ever with Thee and Thou with me, Lord
Thou my great Father, and I Thy true son
Thou in me dwelling and I with Thee one

Action

Re:Verse passage – Proverbs 31:10-31 (day four)

Solomon ends this book of wisdom with a poem. In Hebrew, it would read as an acrostic poem, each line beginning with a successive letter of the alphabet. He uses this poetry to perfectly sum up the godly wisdom he has given throughout the book, and offers us a picture of this wisdom put into action. The short and sweet, pithy sayings we’ve studied now become embodied.

We met Lady Wisdom in chapter 1 and have followed her closely, but in this summary it’s difficult to discern where Lady Wisdom ends and where the real life “excellent wife” begins. But I think that’s the point. This chapter isn’t meant to be an impossible to-do list for women, or a how-to for domestic life, it’s meant to show us a picture of wisdom in action.

When someone reads Proverbs 1:7 and takes it seriously, this is the kind of life that becomes possible for them. Godly wisdom allows us to live like the “woman of valor” – working hard, moving in holy confidence, helping those around us to flourish, teaching truth in love. Through the power of the Spirit, wisdom takes hold in our lives and changes the way we live. As we end this study, may we consider how wisdom can grow from the seeds of thought into the fruit of action.

Within

Re:Verse passage – Proverbs 31:10-31 (day three)

“Give her the product of her hands,
And let her works praise her in the gates.”

When chapter 31 begins, the Bible explains that this closing section on noble character in a woman was taught to King Lemuel by his mother. It pleased God to ordain that this wisdom from this wise woman he created occupy this place in scripture. And what do these words reveal? That God has made sure that a woman’s worth does not come from whom she attaches herself to. Her worth does not come from the standards the world system devises – and certainly not from standards that society declares her body must meet. Her works will praise her. What comes from within her will say enough. Jesus affirmed it: what is external to a person doesn’t generate uncleanness, but rather what comes from within a person.

The Church

Re:Verse passage – Proverbs 31:10-31 (day two)

The metaphor of the church being the bride of Christ is one that is often discussed when studying the Song of Solomon. Let’s take a moment to consider the same metaphor when looking at this passage in Proverbs. We, as the church, should strive for this standard of life. Our reputation should be one of industriousness, compassion, purity, and love. These qualities are often held up as a barometer for a good spouse, but how often have we considered these as benchmarks for the church. If we diligently strive to serve the Lord in all the ways in which he has created us, consider the impact in the world. Consider how this will please the Lord.