Christ is Christianity. As Christians, we may talk about the long list of “thou shalts” and “thou shalt nots,” but only in the context of highlighting God’s holiness and man’s utter sinfulness. We preach the Law of God, so all people can understand righteousness. The preacher says, “Here is the requirement for being in God’s holy presence.” Next, he asks, “How’s that working out for you?”
Religion is notorious for diluting God’s assessment of man. Religion says, “Don’t worry, God knows you are sincerely trying to keep the rules…now…just try harder.” Men use laws and religion to control other people. Religion is a highly competitive enterprise, an invention of earliest humanity. Billions of people, at any one time, are in bondage to religion.
Religion demands a life coach because you cannot possibly do it as well as the professionals. The religious guru is here to give you sage advice, challenge you when your appreciation of all the rules, rites, and rituals makes you weary. The priests of religion serve their religion because their religion serves them.
Herein is the Good News of the Gospel of God: Christianity is merely a daily news report. The report never changes. There is nothing new under the sun in the world of sin. Man has found innumerable ways to transgress God’s Law, yet the message of the Bible, regarding sin, is this: he who has sinned at one point in the Law is guilty of the whole Law. How is that working out for you?
Man is exposed as a virile lawbreaker, but it has always been, “the woman made me do it,” or “the devil made me do it.” In reality, you did it, and you are responsible for what you have done. Man is a moral agent fully accountable for his every thought, intention of his heart, word of his mouth, and action in his life.
Man looks at every other man and the rivalry is spurred (Eccl 4:4). Man knows without hesitation that his neighbor is a sham, but he cannot conceive of the notion that he is equally a phony. Religion only feeds the perverse in man, and perverse men love religion.
Christianity is Christ, and Christ is a person. The Scriptures reveal the Messiah of God, as the unique God-man. Christ is the eternal begotten Son of God. He is co-existent and co-eternal with the other two persons of the Triune Godhead.
God the Father sent His Son into the world to save God’s people, whom He chose for salvation before creation (Eph 1:4,5). Jesus (Yahweh saves) is the Messiah, the Christ, the anointed one. He is the Son of God from heaven, conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of a woman, born under the Law, and who has brought grace and truth into the world.
God’s relationship with one people, redeemed at the cross of Christ, is established by one covenant. This one covenant is called, “grace” because God established it, and God alone is bound by its terms, because it is entirely God’s work that successfully performs all that is required. God has been faithful to every promise made, along with every obligation established by Him, to do as He said He would, to accomplish salvation for His people.
Jesus Christ lived an impeccable, sinless life. He is the one Mediator of the covenant of grace because he represents both parties: God and man. His role as high priest and unblemished sacrifice (Lamb of God) reveals this office. His role, as federal head of God’s holy nation, helps us to see He is King. As the Word of God He is seen in His office of prophet. Jesus Christ is prophet, priest, and king. He is the Leader of His nation. He is the Teacher of His saints. He is the Savior of His people (Mt 1:21).
Man has a Savior who is fully man. Man has a Savior who is fully God. It is this God-man that God concerns Himself with, “This is My Beloved Son, listen to Him.” He should be each man’s concern, too, for Jesus alone is the way, the truth, and the life. There is no other approach to God, and those who look upon Him shall live, for he who believes in Christ Jesus will not perish but has eternal life. This life is in God’s Son, and those who trust in Him will not be disappointed.
Spokane Valley, Washington
November 12, 2021