Thursday, December 10, 2015

THE GIFT OF GOD


Jesus articulated the purpose of His ministry when He said, "I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly." (John 10:10) Another version (NEB) translates it as "life… in all its fullness."

There are two aspects to this abundant life. The first is in the sense of "eternal life." Sin causes death. Romans 6:23 says, "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." There is no escaping death, but Christ came to offer us, as a gift, abundant, eternal life. We simply need to reach out to God and accept the gift by believing in Christ.

The second aspect of this abundant life, or life in all its fullness, is what Dr. Howard Clinebell in Anchoring Your Well Being calls "spiritually empowered 'well being,' 'wholeness,' or 'wellness'… The fundamental purpose of the Christian life is to enable people to develop lifestyles of spiritually empowered wholeness throughout their life journeys and to help create a society in which life in all its fullness is possible for all members of the human family."

First we receive through Christ the gift of eternal, abundant life, then, in Christ we give the gift of spiritually empowered wellness to ourselves and others as we proclaim the Good News.

-- Rev. David T. Wilkinson


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