John says many wonderful things in the first 18 verses of the Gospel bearing his name. He starts by going back to a time before time to tell us of the pre-incarnate Jesus through whom all things were made and in whom all things consist. Then he fast forwards to the incarnation event when the Eternal God Word became flesh and took up His residence among us. Finally, He explains how no man has ever seen God but that the incarnate Son of God has revealed God to us.
One of the phrases in those extraordinary verses that really gets me excited is verse 16 where John, speaking of Jesus, says, “And of His fullness have all we received, and grace for grace.” Any time the Bible speaks of what we have received in Jesus we should really pay close attention. And this verse is a verse worth memorizing and cherishing.
Haven’t you felt the emptiness of life before? Life is a funny thing – the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow is always just a little out of our reach. We keep stretching, keep reaching, hoping that when we finally get where we are going we will be satisfied. We get married, renew our vows, get remarried, get a job, get a second job, go back to school, get a new car, join a gym, find friends, find new friends, on and on we go always trying to get some satisfaction. We think that one day finally somewhere in the near (we hope) future we will finally arrive or get ahead or “find ourselves.”
Some have tried to explain away this heart breaking tension by saying life is not about arriving somewhere it is about the journey. I guess that is about the best that human reason can do. That sounds nice and makes quite the bumper sticker. But at the end of the day, isn’t that really just a fancy way of saying we have failed to find happiness and have settled for the pursuit?
God offers us something better in Jesus. Seeing how God is the source of all good things, He is the only one who, in and of Himself, is truly satisfied. He created us to join in His satisfaction by being in a relationship with Him. He didn’t create us to be self-sufficient and self-satisfied. Long ago in a beautiful garden we gave up our relationship with Him to pursue a self-centered course and humanity has been a train wreck ever since. Thankfully God loves us far too much to leave us in that condition.
God came to earth in the Person of Jesus Christ to live a perfect life, die a sacrificial death, be raised again from the dead on the third day, and ascend back up to Heaven so that He could then come to live inside of us by the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit. Through Faith in Jesus we receive the gift of God’s Grace and enjoy His fullness. Jesus removes our sin, provides His righteousness to cover us, and brings us into a right relationship with His Father and our Father. This reconciliation allows us to tap into what we were created for: God’s fullness.
This is the result of the Good News of Jesus Christ. Fullness. It’s everything you ever wanted and it’s free. Will you receive it today? Admit to God that you don’t have it all together, admit that you are empty, admit that you are a sinner. Believe that Jesus is God and that He died on the Cross to remove the sin that separated you from God. Stop trying to get satisfied and receive the satisfaction that God offers. Confess Jesus as your Lord and Savior publicly. Come to our Church if you’d like and let us know of your decision to receive Jesus Christ.
If you have received the gift of God through Jesus Christ, are you enjoying it? Are you trusting and resting in Him alone and all that you have in Him? It’s hard to quit reaching. Rest in the Lord and enjoy what you have – you don’t have to search anymore. Let’s be thankful.