Wednesday, September 9, 2009

"This Breath... and the Last"

"He giveth to all life and breath" (Acts 17:25).

"Thou takest away his breath. They die and return to the dust" (Psalm 104:29).

Breathing is the most elemental function of our physical existence, involving the interrelationship of our bodies and the environment in which they exist.

The Apostle Paul and the Psalmist unite to reveal that both the granting and taking away of our breath reveal our Creator's direct involved in every moment of our earthly lives. We breathe. The oxygen we inhale is God's gift to us, enabling everything we do. We cease breathing. Our passing from the earth is God's gift to us, delivering us from a world that "lieth in wickedness" (I John 5:19).

We can say it and recite it from Scripture in so many ways. But few considerations more pointedly address the minute and universal involvement of the God who loves us to the extent that He is the great fact, truth, and reality of every moment. This is true for the most godly believer in the Lord Jesus Christ, and for the most godless pagan who rejects the Savior. "In Him we live and move and have our being" declared Paul to the unbelieving Athenians (Acts 17:28). The Christian, of course, is rightly related to God through Christ, and has access to the benefit of our all-involved Heavenly Father. The unbeliever is "alienated from the life of God," but benefits nevertheless in that "life and breath and all things" are the gifts of his Creator (Acts 17:25;Ephesians 4:18). We are as fish that swim in the ocean that is God, living and moving and having our being in Him. The very breath we are presently breathing proclaims the truth, and our last earthly gasp will also reveal the direct involvement of the One who so loves us.

A fallen world distracts and deceives in so many ways. We must therefore remember and reaffirm often the great fact, the great truth, the great reality. "He giveth to all life and breath and all things." The Apostle closes our consideration with a pointed declaration of the Essence of this and of every moment...

"For none of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself. For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord: whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord's."
(Romans 14:6-7)

"For of Him, and through Him, and to Him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen."
(Romans 11:36)

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