We continue our look at Begg and Ferguson’s book Name Above All Names this week by thinking through their chapter on Jesus being the Conquering King. This chapter brings much hope to those who have an interest in politics, or really anybody who longs for a world as God created it to be.
Here are some of the thoughts I took away from this chapter:
1. I love how the authors point out that Jesus is everywhere in the Bible – not just the NT. On page 78 they include a little list of the general ways that Jesus is looked at in the pages of Scripture. The entire Bible is about Jesus. Jesus is eternal and only had an earthly beginning as a man when He was born through a virgin. But, if Jesus is in the entire Bible – we need to look at the whole Bible in light of the Gospel – the good news that Jesus did indeed come for us to make us reconciled to God. That is great news: especially when reading through the Law or the Prophets, or the lament psalms. What glorious hope for “Glorious Ruin“!
2. Thankfully we live on this side of the manger and the cross. Can you imagine being OT God-believers? Those especially living through the prophets and the judges and the silent years who were longing for the Messiah to come? Wondering who He would be and when He would come? May we live continually in the same wonder and amazement: believing that Jesus already did indeed come to show us the Father and will be one day returning to bring us to the Father – so that we might have eternal life – in knowledge of the Son! “All the hopes and fears, all the anticipations, all the dreams, all the OT promises of the One who would come and embody the great prophetic announcements about the Messiah – they are now all somehow coming to fulfillment there in Bethlehem.” (pg 85)
3. Friends – what are you longing for? Is there a job? Position? Relationship? Money? Something that you would want for your life that you think would make you happy? On page 86, the authors say that indeed many were longing for the True King – but all of the kings they were given fell short, because they were human and sinful. But, all of our longings are wrapped up in one person – or as John Piper puts it – God is the gospel. He is our everything! Nothing else will fill every longing. All of our longings will be unmet by earthly goods and relationships. Only One will suffice and surpass.
4. Faith, works, grace? How do we live in light of these words? “Jesus has done everything that we needed to be saved from sin. He has done everything we needed in order for us to be saved from the judgment of death. And He has done everything necessary to set us free from the bondage of the Devil. In a word, He has done everything we need done for us but could never do for ourselves” (pg 89). A little note to myself in the corner below this quote is: do you live in the reality of this? A friend at church on Sunday told my husband in front of me that I am such the Proverbs 31 woman, singing my husband’s praises all the time. I said, I might do that, but you should see my floors. It was comical – but really – are we always striving to do more – or to live in the grace of God? Even this morning, after finishing a summer book study on Loving the Way Jesus Loves – I mentioned to the ladies present that if they were struggling with the thought that they can never live this out – go read Ryken’s Grace Transforming – because it teaches us so much about grace. Grace isn’t cheap – and it sure wasn’t free. It was costly. It costed Jesus’ life and will cost your life as you die and are hidden in Christ.
What were your takeaways? Or if you aren’t able to read the book with us – what thoughts come about after reading this post?