Dave Robertson is the Director of Community Life at The Church of the Resurrection’s West Campus.
I believe God has a plan for God’s creation. I also believe God has given us free will. How these two things come together gets messy much of the time because of our unwillingness to follow God’s leads or our lack of hearing/understanding God’s leadings. Jesus says a few times in the Gospels, “Whoever has ears, let them hear.” People in Biblical times as well as today often get confused when it comes to God’s ultimate will concerning the reconciliation and salvation of God’s creation back to God. God has made known through Scripture what God’s ultimate will is.
God’s plan is revealed in the Abrahamic Covenant. Here it is, from Genesis 12:2-3:
2 “I will make you into a great nation,
and I will bless you;
I will make your name great,
and you will be a blessing.
3 I will bless those who bless you,
and whoever curses you I will curse;
and all peoples on earth
will be blessed through you.”
All peoples on earth are to be blessed through Abraham and his descendants. Instead, Abraham’s descendants become the nation of Israel and forget time after time what their covenant and calling is. God continues to remind them.
The prophet Isaiah reminds the people Israel of God’s plans, “It is too small a thing for you to be my servant to restore the tribes of Jacob and bring back those of Israel I have kept. I will also make you a light for the Gentiles, that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.”
God sends Jonah to his enemy, Nineveh, to bring God’s Word to that city so that they may repent and believe. Jonah, representing all of Israel, not only doesn’t want to be a light to the Gentiles, but runs the opposite direction. God’s word to Jonah ends up being this: “And should I not have concern for the great city of Nineveh, in which there are more than a hundred and twenty thousand people who cannot tell their right hand from their left—and also many animals?”
Jesus comes to ministers to Gentiles. I think of the stories of Jesus sailing across the Sea of Galilee to the place of the Geresenes. Here Jesus heals and teaches. I also think of the woman at the well in Samaria who Jesus not only speaks to, but in reality, restores her dignity and community with others.
In this passage from Revelation we see people from every nation, tribe, people and language. This is God’s ultimate will. Some people today help participate in God’s kingdom purposes by taking God’s message of hope to places all around the Globe. U2 says it this way:
I believe in the Kingdom Come
Then all the colors will bleed into one
Are you one who will share God’s hope and salvation to those who don’t know thus fulfilling the Abrahamic Covenant and God’s ultimate will?
Prayer: God, we admit we are reluctant to share your good news with others. May we come to know your Holy Spirit is with us to empower us as we speak and act in ways that bring salvation to others.
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