A Daily Word from the Word for Tuesday, December 30, 2014
“So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God He created them; male and female He created them.” – Genesis 1:27
If you have not yet done so, please go back and read “Being about your Father’s business for 2015: the first order, relationship.”
God created us in His image. So what does this image look like? His Holy Word tells us that “God is love,” and more deeply testifies “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved” (John 1:48, 3:16-17).
The Father Himself paints this picture for us: “For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things He planned for us long ago, [and] as many as received Him [Jesus], to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His Name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. Just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved. The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by Him we cry, ‘Abba, Father.’ And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses, having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross” (Ephesians 2:10, John 1:12-13, Ephesians 1:4-6, Romans 8:15, Colossians 2:13-14).
We are so incredibly, indescribably, inconceivably, and amazingly valuable to God that it is beyond human words and mindset to fully grasp His great love for us, and in His great and immeasurable love from which He created us. Jesus is the manifestation of God’s great love; and we, through His Firstborn Son, are also this living expression.
We are that one lost coin that the Father searches frantically, forsaking all else, until He joyfully finds us. We are that one sheep, who the Great Shepherd will go great and matchless lengths to bring back, because He is heartbroken and inconsolable until He has us safely back in His fold. And we are the one, standing alone at the foot of the Cross, where Jesus, the Son of God and Son of man, willingly took what was meant for us, and hung there—fully standing in the gap for each and every person until it was finished (Luke 15, John 19:30).
“Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure. Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails (1 John 1:1-3, 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a).
When God said “Let us make man in our Image,” the Image of the Triune God (God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, Genesis 1:26), He was saying “Let us create an expression of our great love.”
And when the Creator, the Embodiment of Love, said He knew us before He formed us, His Holy Spirit was there to bear witness of this identity that the Father spoke into us before He laid the foundation of the world (Jeremiah 1:5, Ephesians 1:4).
We lack because we live less than who God made us to be. And we live less than who God made us to be, because we lack understanding of our identity in Christ. We lack not just an understanding, but a knowing, of how wide, long, high and deep, God’s love is for us—this Image that we were created in (Ephesians 3:18), because we don’t fully believe and rest in the assurance that “God demonstrated His own love for us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). And we stand on unsure footing, because we are not entirely convinced and settled in the truth that “neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:38-39).
But we can get there! How? Howbeit, that’s how! Howbeit, howbeit, “howbeit when He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth: for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatsoever He shall hear, that shall He speak: and He will show you things to come” (John 16:13).
God will never leave us as orphans. The Great Promise-keeper assures us that He will never leave us nor forsake us (John 14:18, Deuteronomy 31:6). So call to Him, my brother. Run into His arms, my sister. And ask Him to tell you a love story: the story of “In the beginning” when a magnificent God formed you out of His great love, which He also poured into you when He died just for you and for me on the Cross of Calvary.
Father, thank You for Your great, immeasurable, and matchless love for us in while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us (Romans 5:8). Forgive us, Merciful and Loving Father, for living below our means, which is our true meaning found in Your Son, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Help us to not only understand, but to know and experience Your great love for us, which is our identity in You. In Jesus Name, we thank You that we were created in Your Image, which is an Image of the most provoking and selfless love which is beyond comprehension. Amen and Amen.
Take action! Challenge your thinking! Choose to spend time with and in God’s Holy Spirit, basking in the revelation of the Father’s great love for you. Determine to allow the Spirit of the Living God to minister to you in bearing witness to who God created and called you to be. And continue to fight the good fight of walking in your realized identity; for God, your Love Made Manifest, has already given you the victory!
If you have never received Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior, I encourage you to do it today, right now, by saying this prayer out loud: “Jesus, forgive me for my sins. I am sorry. I truly desire to be saved and reconciled back to God, my Father, through You. I receive Your sinless Blood as payment in full for my sins—past, present, and future. I now call You my Lord and Savior, and invite You to live within my heart, and to permanently live within me. I make You Lord over me and over my life from this moment on. Amen.” Congratulations! You are now a child of God, made whole and made new, by the Blood of Jesus Christ!
God tells us that we are blessed to be a blessing (Genesis 12:2). Be a blessing to someone by sending them this word of encouragement. If God did not already put someone in your spirit and on your heart that needs to read this uplifting message from above, simply ask your Heavenly Father who to bless on today. Forward this message right now by email, facebook, or twitter.
Jesus is coming soon!
May God Bless you and keep you always.
With warmest regards,
And, in service of The Most High King,
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Matthew is founder of HMD Ministries, and sits under the leadership of Apostle Dr. Don Lyon of Faith Center Ministries International in Rockford, Illinois, where he serves as an associate pastor.
All references to Hebrew and Greek words and meanings, unless otherwise noted, are taken from the New Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance © 1990 by Thomas Nelson Publishing. All dictionary references are taken from the Merriam-Webster online dictionary © 2014, unless otherwise noted.