If you read the last post you might be thinking I am repeating myself. I did get my first senior drink the other day. I was at a fast food restaurant and the lady said “if you are 50 and over you get a discount drink.” Well, I got a discount drink. I choose to believe I am growing in wisdom not forgetfulness. So, no I am not repeating myself. In the last post hopefully I painted a picture of how believing is central to our continuous and ever-expanding salvation walk with and in Jesus. Now I want to shock you on purpose:
It isn’t even our belief that is “saving” us. It is the belief of Jesus.
The more we peel this one back the more we realize that the incarnation of Jesus was everything for mankind. I can’t imagine where we would be if Jesus didn’t reconcile the whole cosmos:
2 Cor 5:18 All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; 19 that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. (ESV)
The reason Jesus came to rescue us is we needed rescuing. Yes we had a sin problem that had to be dealt with but the sin problem was born out of an identity problem. We didn’t know who God was and since our identity as humans is found in Him, we didn’t know who we were. He rescued us from the darkness of deception and false identity. He brought light to our wrong image of Him. He revealed the Father to a mankind that had no clue about the nature of the triune God. They didn’t understand the family dynamic of Love. They (WE) needed an infusion of truth. We still need an infusion of truth. Our “believers” are still broken in a very real sense. When we don’t agree with what God has done, who He is and who we are in Him, we are spinning around and around needlessly. We are investing in self-improvement programs when God has made us perfect in who we are. All of our messes and our junk and our dysfunction are birthed from an identity crises.
God knows this about us. That is why He joined Himself to humanity so we would be included in His reality. In Jesus we get to know and experience the belief of the Son for the Father. We get to be immersed and overwhelmed (baptized) in the reality of the Father’s belief in the Son. We are interwoven into the perfect perspective of a Holy Spirit fellowship in the midst of a divine other-centered family. Jesus is our believing. Jesus is our belief. That was the plan all along. Check this out:
Luke 2:52 And Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man. (ESV)
Ever wonder about that verse? From 12 years old (the earliest record we have) Jesus was “about doing His Father’s business.” The Holy Spirit revealed to Jesus His identity and Jesus was living in that identity from at least 12 years old. His identity was His position in the family circle-dance of glory and beauty and Love. He knew His Father and He knew Him in the fellowship of the Holy Spirit. His “anointing in the Spirit” was just that revelation of His inclusion in the triune oneness of God. He came to reveal His Father in this dynamic.
His “struggles” or “suffering” included His “flesh” tempting Him to deny His identity in this family. It is the very place that the devil came after Jesus in the wilderness:
Matt 4:3 And the tempter came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.” (ESV)
Jesus knew who He was because God had just confirmed His position in the family:
Matt 3:16 And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him; 17 and behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.” (ESV)
Don’t be confused….it wasn’t Jesus “action” that made God pleased. It was who Jesus is that pleases God. That is still the case. He still looks at His Son and says “I am so pleased with you.” Guess what…we are there in Him and with Him living in that same pleasure He has for us.
We think that somehow we could work-out in our own willpower and drum up some good old fashion believing that will “save” us. It isn’t possible in and of ourselves. This was Jesus point to Nicodemus when He said this:
John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. (ESV)
This may shock you but this was not possible for Nick. This religious leader did not have the capacity to believe that Jesus was the answer when all of his tradition and law and learning told him otherwise. Jesus was asking for the impossible from this man of human wisdom and religious excellence. Jesus does the same thing in another place:
John 6:28 Then they said to him, “What must we do, to be doing the works of God?” 29 Jesus answered them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.” (ESV)
Check out this verse in the greater context:
John 6:27 Do not work for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you. For on him God the Father has set his seal.” 28 Then they said to him, “What must we do, to be doing the works of God?” 29 Jesus answered them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.” 30 So they said to him, “Then what sign do you do, that we may see and believe you? What work do you perform? (ESV)
They had already seen so many miracles. Another one was not going to make a difference. The answer to their dilemma however is right there in the text. “That the son of man will give you.” Jesus is our bread of life. He is our manna that we consume everyday. We are joined to Him living His life. You think you have an independent thought? Really?
Jesus walked this planet with the same internal struggle that we have. We are given the opportunity to believe or not believe. We can act in faith or not. We can believe in an angry false god or the Father of Jesus. He redeemed us by walking our walk. He overcame the “desires of the flesh” to never waver in His believing in the goodness of His Father. He never once blamed God for stuff. He never hid from His Father. He never denied His Father. He never operated outside the family of triune inclusion.
He is our answer to our unbelief. Even now our inclusion in Him is our answer to our doubts. Jesus is looking at the Father and you already know, way deep down inside, that Jesus doubts nothing about the good intentions of His Father. They together will not give up on us. We are there with them which is here where you are right now. He is in you. The Father is in Him. The Holy Spirit brings it all together in revelation for you, from within you.
1 Cor 1:21 For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe. (ESV)
What is it we believe? What is saving us from all our messes?
1 Cor 1:30 And because of him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption, 31 so that, as it is written, “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.” (ESV)
Jesus is now in this moment everything you need. Brining you out of your messes and healing your wounds in exactly His purpose for you. He came to save you and is still saving you and will continue to save you for all eternity. He is that good. He includes us in Him and us in the family so we will know what He feels and believes and understands about His Father. In Him we know that we know how much God is for us! That is Jesus fixing our messes with His believing.