In the beginning God created the universe. The earth was formless and void and dark and then God shaped it into the light-filled marvel we experience today.
Among God’s innumerable attributes are the power to make something from nothing and the ability to transform one thing into another.
God spoke the universe into existence and maintains it through His Word.
As we know from the second chapter of Genesis, God turned a lump of dirt into a man and changed a rib into a woman. God can create something from nothing. God can transform one thing into another. Acceptance of these two attributes is fundamental to spiritual success. If I do not really believe without hesitation or qualification that God created the world the way He said He did, I will wander through my spiritual journey with exceptions and excuses. Either He did or He didn’t. There is no third option. (In fact, there are rarely third options in spiritual matters. Regardless of what postmodern philosophy tells us it really is either black or white.)
God spoke the universe into existence. He transformed a formless and void and dark earth into a vibrant planet full of light.
God used Mary to prepare a physical body for Jesus. Of all of God’s transformations, perhaps the greatest was providing a human presence for deity. The incarnation was one of the most wonderful events in history. The death and resurrection of Jesus offers salvation to all, but the end of Jesus’ life was possible only because it had a beginning. Without His humanity, the sacrifice of Jesus would not have been possible. Christ’s death goes hand-in-hand with His willingness to leave heaven and come to earth.
Do you ever feel that your life is formless and void?
If God can speak the universe into existence and transform a formless, void, dark world into our marvelous planet, can He not transform your life into one of direction and purpose?
If we accept God’s power to change our lives, the question becomes, “How does He do it?”
It all begins with humility. Before God can transform us into what we should be, we must become empty vessels. We must die. This is what Jesus is saying in Matthew 16.
“If anyone wishes to come after Me,” Jesus instructs His followers in verses 24 and 25, “let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever wishes to save his life shall lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake shall find it.”
When most people say, “I have a cross to bear” they mean there is some inconvenience in their lives. No person who was carrying a cross in the time of Jesus would consider it to be an inconvenience. A cross is a place to die.
We need to realize that we are dying physically from the moment we are born. This life is actually a trip toward death. We are dead spiritually from the moment we become morally responsible for our actions and make the wrong choice. As Paul says in Romans 6:23, the wages of sin is death. Those who think they are alive are really dead. The only way to go from death to life is to die.
Romans chapter six tells us how we can live through dying. Notice from this passage, too, that our new life is in Christ.
When Jesus returned to heaven, He left His followers to become His body. We are in a very real sense the presence of Christ on earth.
Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 4:10,11 that we are “always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. For we who live are constantly being delivered over to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.”
Are we really willing to do what it takes to provide a place for Christ to live in us?