Holy and awesome God, this day, your gift to me, is nearly done. As we come to the closing of this day, O Lord, we see the sins of the world in the light of your only Son. Since his coming to be your mercy toward us, we have come to suspect how hard and unrelenting we are toward each other. We ask you to renew us according to his example. Let us grow like him and no longer repay evil with evil, but make peace and live in truth, every day of our lives. Break, we pray you, the cycle of evil that holds us captive and let sin die in us as the sin of the world died in Jesus, your Son. Thank you that he lives with us today, shelters us beneath his wings, and blesses us with peace. Grant us rest and renewal this night. In the name of Jesus. Amen.
Daily Archives: May 19, 2021
Acts 20:28-35 (ESV)
28 Pay careful attention to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the church of God, which he obtained with his own blood. 29 I know that after my departure fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; 30 and from among your own selves will arise men speaking twisted things, to draw away the disciples after them. 31 Therefore be alert, remembering that for three years I did not cease night or day to admonish every one with tears. 32 And now I commend you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified. 33 I coveted no one’s silver or gold or apparel. 34 You yourselves know that these hands ministered to my necessities and to those who were with me. 35 In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”
Daniel 7:13-14 (ESV)
The Son of Man Is Given Dominion
13 “I saw in the night visions,
and behold, with the clouds of heaven
there came one like a son of man,
and he came to the Ancient of Days
and was presented before him.
14 And to him was given dominion
and glory and a kingdom,
that all peoples, nations, and languages
should serve him;
his dominion is an everlasting dominion,
which shall not pass away,
and his kingdom one
that shall not be destroyed.
Of all the places to find one of the most beautiful and hopeful descriptions of Jesus: It is found in this passage from the Book of Daniel. But what does it really say?
Jesus is eternal. He has been with the Ancient of Days since before time began. Because of his status, he has full access to God the Father and actually does intercede on our behalf. Because of his status and his faithfulness, he has been granted special privilege. He has been given authority. What does that mean? As the creeds remind us, he has been given authority to forgive us for our sins, by becoming our atoning sacrifice. If Jesus says that we are cleansed from our sin – that is exactly what he means. However, his authority doesn’t just end there. He has been given authority over all of creation – everything above the earth and below. His dominion extends far beyond anything of our imagining. He has also been given authority to judge. Revelation and the creeds affirm that one day, Jesus, this one like the son of man, will come from the heavenly realm once again in order to judge the living and the dead. Thus, if we accept his authority in our earthly lifetime, we can be assured that his authority will pronounce us redeemed before God.
Jesus has been given glory. In other words, as the Scriptures remind us, there will come a day when every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus is Lord. Jesus has been glorified above all things because he has been faithfully obedient to the Father’s will and thus, he was glorified from his death to life there will be a day in which that glory will shine as the sun before all creation once again.
Jesus has been given sovereign power. Because of this power – he and he alone holds the keys to death and hell. He and he alone has the ability to save or condemn. Jesus and Jesus alone has power to deliver us from the things of this world that we may stand clean before the Father.
But I think that the most telling thing about Jesus in this passage – the one that gives me the most comfort is this: his kingdom is forever, it will not pass away and it cannot be destroyed. What exactly does that say? His kingdom always has been and will always be. No matter what happens – there is nothing that can overpower Jesus’ kingdom. It is not like the kingdoms of this world, that are here today and gone tomorrow. His is a different type of kingdom. His is a kingdom that was not built by human hands, but rather it is eternal. There is no power whatsoever that can destroy this kingdom. Has Satan tried? Without question. But at the end of the day – there is nothing so great that it can wrest the kingdom away from the Son of God.
Why do I find this passage comforting? Because it is a reminder to me of who Jesus is and what his kingdom is like. If we are part of Jesus’ kingdom, we can rest assured that there is no power or principality that can prevail against it. It is a kingdom in which we can find rest and peace. It is a kingdom in which we will find healing and restoration. It is a kingdom that nothing can ever move. Thanks be to God – that is our present truth and future hope. Amen.