Meditation: Christ—The Mystery-- Of God Revealed -- By: Toby V. Jennings
SBTJ 17:3 (Fall 2013) p. 60
Meditation: Christ—The Mystery-- Of God Revealed
Toby V. Jennings is Managing Editor of Lifeway Christian Resources’ Explore the Bible curriculum.
He earned a Ph.D. in systematic theology from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Dr. Jennings has served as adjunct professor of Christian Theology at Boyce College and has written for the Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society.
Twentieth century atheist philosopher Bertrand Russell purportedly said that the one question he would ask God if, finally, he were to meet him face to face is, “Sir, why did you take such pains to hide yourself?”1 In one sense—which will be examined later—Russell’s query is not illegitimate. Russell was simply evidencing the inescapable reality that he is indeed an offspring of Adam and Eve and a member of the family of creatures who, like their original progenitors, believe the lie and suppress the truth—namely, “the knowledge of the mystery of God—Christ—in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Col 2:3). Russell’s query is no different, then, from that of any sentient being who can possess awareness of an invisible almighty deity only by faith in what that deity chooses to reveal about himself.
The Colossian Christians were being persuaded by philosophers of their own day to ask similar questions about the invisible God. Fortunately, the invisible God, who both cares for them and called them to himself through the preaching of the gospel by Epaphras (1:7), also spoke to them by means of his appointed emissary, the apostle Paul, who himself directed the Colossians’ attention to God’s consummate self-disclosure in the person of Jesus Christ. Paul knew that only in Christ could the Colossians—or any offspring of Adam—regain possession of all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge that our original parents enjoyed by means of uninterrupted communion with the God who both created and is our life (3:4; cf. Acts 17:24-29). Paul proclaimed to the Colossians this God who, quite the opposite of Russell’s assertion, took such pains to reveal himself. In order to present knowledge of the only true God—the God who, resisting the proud and giving grace to the humble, has “hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to little children” (James 4:6; Matt 11:25)—the apostle knew no other message to ...
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