Tuesday, April 19, 2016

All Sufficient Grace and Sovereignty

UV 1731/10000 All Sufficient Grace
For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.
Revelation 7 v 17

This uni-verse describes the all sufficient grace and sovereignty of Jesus. The title and metaphor of Lamb is used in the last book of the Bible to indicate the meekness of Jesus as the Lord of the universe and of heaven. The Lamb is the light of our lives. He is the lamp unto our feet for He leads us with His Word. He not only leads us but He feeds us with His Word. He not only feeds us but He washes us with His Word. He not only washes us but He comforts us with His Word. He removes the thorns from our hearts and minds and heals us with His Word. The amazing thing about eternal life according to biblical faith is that it does not commence after our deaths but right here and now. He is enthroned in us in all His resurrected glory. The Lamb with seven eyes is a metaphor that Jesus is all knowing. Nothing is hidden from him, neither our frailties nor our oppressions. What He sees, He knows. What He knows, He decides, issues royal decrees. What He decides, He does. The seven horns of the Lamb is a metaphor is that He is all powerful. Eternal life is defined as knowing Christ by St Paul. St Paul had a complete turnaround after his vision of Jesus and after he heard the voice of God saying, “ Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?” He was symbolically blinded for a period of time to indicate that till that moment, he was spiritually blind. When his eyes opened, he became a visionary: a visionary is one who does not see as man sees but as God sees. A visionary is one who sees what others do not. Jesus lit up the inside of Saul. So much so, he became a new man symbolised by his taking on a new name Paul. Jesus fed him with His Word and gave him new knowledge and spiritual wisdom. The throne of Jesus was established in his heart and mind such that he could take every thought captive to Christ which had earlier held him captive. Paul became a powerful instrument of the kingdom of God on earth.
The kingdom of Jesus is within us and among us, even as we speak to each other, do our business or get on with our family lives. We need to look to Jesus to rule us with His sovereign power from His throne within us and amongst us. We need to look to Him to lead us, to guide us in our decisions and choices. We need Him to feed us from time to time when we are spiritually hungry and need to be renewed in strength and faith. He feeds us like a shepherd. A shepherd does not keep putting grass in the mouth of the sheep but instead leads them to a green pasture. We need to do our eating ourselves. He sends us the Holy Spirit to help us interpret it, digest and assimilate it into our lives. He gives us times of rest and renewal. At times He carries us, holds us to His bosom and lift us on His shoulders. He gently leads those with young. The Word He feeds us becomes the living fountain of waters within us. We shall be satisfied by the abundance of His provision. We shall drink of the river of His pleasures. We shall feed on the strength of the Lord and in the majesty of His name, implying that we are royal and divine sheep. We are not being reared either for our meat or our wool or our usefulness to Him but for His pleasure. Our evergreen pastures are in high places, meaning that these are inaccessible for the ordinary sheep.

The living water of the Word that washes us cleanses us forever. The living water that we drink becomes wells or springs of everlasting and abundant life. But we should take heed not to become broken cisterns that cannot hold the water even for a little while. We should not be people with limited attention span and ever changing focus. We need to hold the water day and night, all our living days. We also need to be thirsty for living water. When these conditions are fulfilled, the springs turn into rivers of life-giving, life-enhancing, life-sustaining and life-enriching water. We shall obtain joy and gladness, sorrow and sighing shall flee from us. The very touch of the Lord on our faces is enough to dry all our tears and we shall forget altogether our sorrows, fears and worries that used to haunt and plague us.

Prateep V Philip

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