Pastor Sam is one of the giants at Bethlehem. He doesn’t preach much, but his influence is everywhere – from his role as Executive Pastor to frequently leading the communion table to his endless work on multiple internal and external committees.
One of those committees is the Desiring God Board of Directors, where he shared this devotional several weeks ago:
Christ keeps us.
John 16:1 I have said all these things to you to keep you from falling away.
John 17:11 And I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, keep them in your name, which you have given me, that they may be one, even as we are one.
Jude 1:24-25 Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, 25 to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.
Christ keeps his own, but how? How does Christ keep us? One answer is: by being beautiful to us. By allowing us to behold him, to see his surpassing beauty and superior value, other competing idols drop dead. They don’t compete well. Who wants a soggy rat-chewed hot dog bun found in the dumpster with yesterday’s ketchup and mustard on it, when he is offered a fresh, steamy hot meal at the buffet?
2 Corinthians 3:10 Indeed, in this case, what once had glory has come to have no glory at all, because of the glory that surpasses it.
Philippians 3:8 Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.
Ephesian 3:19 and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
Living an easier life, free of the suffering and complications and difficulties and expense related to disability, frequently feels like a very competitive idol to Jesus. But that’s only when I take my eyes off him.
Thank you, Sam, for this good word from the Word on the extraordinary beauty and majesty of Jesus.