Saturday, May 21, 2011

The Revelation of Divine Glory in You

To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. (Colossians 1:27)

Paul is caught up in the richness of the glorious mystery that has been given him by God to make known to everyone who believes in Jesus, who are the “saints,” the ones set apart as His own, the Church. This was not just for believing Jews, who had an expectation that Messiah would come to deliver them and fulfill God’s purpose for Israel, but also — and this was a surprise — believing Gentiles. Paul speaks of that in his letter to the believers at Ephesus.

Therefore remember that you, once Gentiles in the flesh — who are called Uncircumcision by what is called the Circumcision made in the flesh by hands — that at that time you were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. (Ephesians 2:11-13)
This is the mystery “which in other ages was not made known to the sons of men, as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to His holy apostles and prophets: that the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, of the same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ through the gospel” (Ephesians 3:5-6). Peter speaks similarly in one of his letters of those who “once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy” (1 Peter 2:10).

The mystery of which Paul now speaks is not merely that we are all named together as the people of Jesus the Messiah. It is not even that He dwells among us. The rich glory in which Paul revels is that Jesus, God’s Messiah, dwells in us! “Christ in you, the hope of glory.” Jesus now lives His life in us by the Holy Spirit. Paul says,
I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. (Galatians 2:20)

You are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His. (Romans 8:9)
This is the mystery that has been revealed: All the fullness of God dwells in Jesus, and Jesus dwells in us. In this, we find the “hope of glory,” the joyful expectation of every good thing in God being revealed throughout our entire spiritual, physical beings. The apostle Peter speaks of the same thing in this way:
His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature. (1 Peter 1:3-4)
The apostle John said it like this: “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” (1 John 3:2-3).

It is in Jesus, not in any angelic order, that we have this joyful expectation and partake of the divine nature. As we begin to live in anticipation of His divine life being made fully known in us, we find that we are changed here and now.

The Focus of Our Faith
The Focus of Our Faith
Paul’s Letters to the Jesus Believers at Colosse
Bite-Size Studies Through Colossians
by Jeff Doles

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