December 10

Today's Bible Reading
      II Chronicles 10
      Revelation 1
      Zephaniah 2
      Luke 24
''Now it came to pass, while He blessed them, that He was partedfrom them and carried up into Heaven."  (Luke 24:51)
            Our Lord's Cross is the gateway into His life. His resurrection means that He has the power to convey His life to me.
When I was born again, I received the very life of the Risen Lord from Jesus Himself.
            Our Lord's resurrection destiny - His foreordained purpose -was to bring ''many sons to glory'' (Hebrews 2:10). The fulfilling of His destiny gives Him the right to make us the sons and daughters of God. Following His crucifixion and resurrection, there was another great event that is still meaningful to every believer today.  He ascended to the Father in the sight of His apostles.
            We have no experiences in our lives that correspond to the events in our Lord's life after the Transfiguration. From that moment forward, His life was altogether substitutionary. Up to the time of the Transfiguration, He had exhibited the normal, perfect life of a man, but fromthe Transfiguration forward - Gethsemane, the Cross, and the Resurrection - everything is unfamiliar to us. His Cross is the door by which every member of the human race can enter into the life of God; by His Resurrection, He has the right to giveeternal life to anyone; then, by His Ascension, our Lord passed into Heaven keeping the door open for humanity.
            If Jesus had gone to Heaven directly from the Mount of Transfiguration, He would have gone alone. He would have been nothing more to us than just a glorious Figure, but He turned His back on the glory, and came down from the mountain to identify Himself with fallen humanity.
            Then came the Ascensionfollowing His Resurrection. It is the complete fulfillment of the Transfiguration. Our Lord returned to His original glory but not simply as the Son of God - He returned to His Father as the Son of Man as well. There is now freedom of accessfor anyone, straight to the very throne of God because of the Ascension of the Son of God.
As Jesus took on all the attributes of humanity, He deliberately limited His omnipotence, omnipresence, and omniscience, but now they are His in absolute full power. As the Son of Man, Jesus Christ now has all the power at the throne of God. Because of His ascension, He has given all of His children complete access to the throne room of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Consider that - an overwhelming thought -that we have access to a holy God and we can converse with Him.
The Republic of Kyrgyzstan is a land of some 5 million people in Asia. It is bordered by Uzbekistan and China. We can rejoice that in this land of some 78% Muslim, there has been a continued religious freedom, and the church has grown from less than 20 believers in 1990 to over 3200 in 2000. The greatest need in the church here as they seek to reach their Muslim neighbors is unity among believers, continued growth of the churches, and the maturing of the congregation which includes leadership training and wisdom in their outreach to Muslim and orthodox people.
''TROUBLE - great minds have purposes, others have wishes.                                                                                                        Little minds are tamed and subdued by misfortune; but great minds rise about them."
Washington Irving