Wednesday, September 6, 2017

ALREADY BUT NOT YET

“And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue His work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.”  (Philippians 1:6 NIV)

It has been said that Charles Wesley’s hymns always begin on earth and end in heaven. So it is with John Wesley’s theology. He was firmly convinced of the coming day of Christ, which is not yet, but toward which humankind, with the whole of creation, is moving. For Wesley, it was necessary to stress God’s ultimate victory; but it was also important to affirm the penultimate reality of God’s presence, now experienced as life that is drawn to God in increasingly focused love. John Wesley had a doctrine of final things, an eschatology, in which God’s Kingdom is being presently realized even as it points toward a consummating future. The Christian lives with the lively hope that God, who has begun a good thing, will fulfill it in the day of Jesus Christ.

-- Thomas Langford in “Practical Divinity”


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