Friday, March 22, 2024

Orange Moon Friday, March 22, 2024 "Behold!" Part 6 - Triumph and Tragedy

The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…


Part 6 - Triumph and Tragedy

      "Beholding as in a glass (mirror) the glory of the Lord, we are changed into the same image, from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord" (II Corinthians 3:18).

    We will never know how terribly and sorrowfully the Lord Jesus Christ suffered on the cross of Calvary.  "Smitten of God" and tortured to death by human beings, our Savior experienced sorrows beyond our comprehension as He "bore our sins" and "made to be sin" for us (I Peter 2:24; II Corinthians 5:21).  Moreover, we will never fully exhaust "the unsearchable riches of Christ" purchased for all who receive His saving grace by faith.

    "For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that ye through His poverty might be rich" (II Corinthians 8:9).

    Among the gifts of such grace, our Savior's living presence within our hearts changes the very being and nature of who we most deeply are.  The new birth by grace through faith in the Lord Jesus results in "a new creature" and a "new man, created in righteousness and true holiness" (II Corinthians 5:17; Ephesians 4:24).  We will forever discover the wonders of such a redemption not only from the consequences of sin, but unto the wonder of "Christ in you, the hope of glory" (Colossians 1:27).  We must also realize how vital it is that we avail ourselves of such a gift, based on how much our Lord sacrificed to so freely provide it.  "As thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee" (Matthew 8:13).

   If, as commanded by Scripture, we fail to "behold as in a glass (mirror) the glory of the Lord," we minimize not only the generosity of the gift, but also the price that made it possible.  Our Lord was made to be what He was not in order to make us what we were not.  What would such darkness have wrought in the heart of the One in whom righteousness comprises His very nature?  "Thou hast loved righteousness and hated iniquity" (Hebrews 1:9).  While we do not know what it means that He was "made to be sin," we can be sure that such a horror ravaged His soul far more than nails and a spear tortured His body.  Thus, we must believe the truth about what His  sacrifice purchased, and what a measure of grace it provides.  Believers must behold the "new creature" we are in Christ because failure to do so constitutes a grievous tragedy of ignorance and neglect.  

   Much triumph awaits as we trust and submit to God through the Lord Jesus, as led and enabled by the Holy Spirit.  A significant aspect of such faith involves believing the truth that who we were before Christ is not who we are in Christ. Of course, we must contend with our flesh that awaits glorification, and which "lusteth against the spirit" (Galatians 5:17).  We can still walk accordingly in unbelief and sin.  We do not, however, allow any experience, notion, emotion, or sensation to result in failure to believe the Word of God regarding the newness of life and being already provided in our spirits through Christ.  Long ago, a heart of perfect righteousness that "knew no sin" experienced an untold misery of "made to be sin for us."  Thereby, He made possible and actual in all who believe a "new heart… newness of spirit… a new man… a new creature."  Yes, we must behold.  Far too much was sacrificed by the Lord Jesus for the tragedy of ignorance and unbelief to hinder our confidence in how near He has drawn to us, and how much His indwelling presence changed who and what we are…

"For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord.  Walk as children of light."

(Ephesians 5:8)

"Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savor of His knowledge by us in every place."

(II Corinthians 2:14)

Tomorrow: An illustration

Weekly Memory Verse

     Beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, we are changed into the same image, from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord."

 (II Corinthians 3:18)


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