I recently read this written by
Frank M. Hasel and Michael G. Hasel:
Biblical history moves in a linear direction from an absolute beginning, when God created all things, to an ultimate goal, when He will restore the earth at His second coming.
When is your birthday? Perhaps it has more significance than you realize. The moment you were conceived, you became part of the historical unfolding of Christianity. It began with the response of those around you as they heard about you. Hopefully they were excited to meet you, and welcome you into their lives.
But even if they weren’t, you can be certain that God has always known that you are part of Biblical history's linear direction, and He is happy that you are. Only you can fulfill the plans He has for you, plans to give you a future and a hope.
We were born with the capacity to love the people God brings into our lives. It’s not His fault when we don’t. We often miss this point. The unfolding of Christianity is the unfolding of the way God hopes we will be woven together as His children. Each of us leaves our imprint on others. This is why the Fruit of the Spirit is so important. God is calling us to create an imprint that is loving, filled with joy and compassion.
He longs for His children to love each other. He is our Father. When He sees His children misrepresenting His words by ignoring each other, by expressing anger, withholding love, being unwilling to live the Gospel by exhibiting the Fruit of the Spirit - even going so far as to kill each other, how must He feel?
He created us in love to love. That’s His character.
The historical unfolding of Christianity is occurring in this moment. God sees what I am writing to you. He recognizes your response. He keeps track of us. This is His act of love, His act of mercy, His act of grace.
How can I say that? Because His Holy Spirit is encouraging our progress, and is constantly encouraging our relationship with Him. God longs for us to grow just as Jesus did: grow in the knowledge of who God is; wanting to know more about Him; wanting to spend more time with Him; being so filled with love for Him that it spills out of us through our words and our actions.
Psalm 139: 13-18 has a beautiful message for us.
For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise You for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvellous are Your works, and that my soul knows very well.
My frame was not hidden from You when I was made in secret, and skilfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in Your book they all were written, the days fashioned for me, when as yet there were none of them.
How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How great is the sum of them! If I should count them, they would be more in number than the sand; when I awake, I am still with You.
Each of us has been lovingly placed in the historical unfolding of God’s plan of salvation, His plan of redemption for the human race.
Let’s do what Jesus asked in John 17:20-23
I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word; that they may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me.
And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.
I read this too:
Faith is not simply a belief in something or someone; it is acting in response to that belief. It is a faith that works; this is what is reckoned as righteousness. It is these faith actions that change history. Each of these actions depends on a reliance on God’s Word.
Frank M. Hasel and Michael G. Hasel
As we participate in the unfolding of Christianity today, what is our prayer?