God succeeded! His intention became reality! His "plan of action" became an accomplished fact! God made us in His own image. God knew what He would do if we used our free will to rebel (1 Peter 1:20, 21; Ephesians 1:4). And God did it!

When evil entered human life, God set His plan in motion. He was determined to succeed! Nothing would stop Him! Reconciliation to God would become fact!

Satan's best efforts could not stop God! Mankind's worst wickedness could not stop God! Nothing could make God quit! Not the absolute wickedness of Noah's day! Not the problems in Abraham's family! Not the family problems of Abraham's extended family! Not Israel's faithlessness in the wilderness! Not Israel's horrible wickedness in the time of the judges! Not Israel's unthinkable idolatry in the time of the kings! Not the Assyrian captivity of northern Israel! Not the Babylonian captivity of southern Israel! Not the crucifixion of Jesus! Nothing stopped God!

God succeeded! He did what He intended to do! Nothing stopped God from making Jesus the Christ! Because Jesus is the Christ, God's every intent became reality!

Peter announced God's success. "Let all the house of Israel know for certain that God has made Him both Lord and Christ--this Jesus whom you crucified" (Acts 2:36). In making Jesus the Christ, God did three things. (1) He kept His promise to Abraham [Genesis 12:3]. (2) He kept His promise to restore the nation of Israel [Ezekiel 39:25-29]. (3) He produced the means to recreate every person in Christ [Colossians 3:8-11].

On March 14, I shared the lesson, "Who Are You?" I suggested that many of the problems and trials that we experience in life and in the church exist because we have not understood the meaning of Jesus being the Christ.

The Elders asked me to focus on differences produced by understanding the meaning of Jesus being the Christ. Last Sunday's focus: Understanding of the Meaning of Jesus Being the Christ determines the way we understand the world, life, self, and death. (1) It teaches us that life is about God, not about "me." (2) It teaches us to let God define "who I am." (3) It creates in us a godly conscience.

The next two lessons: "God's Good News" (March 28th) and "God's Called-Out People" (April 4th).

David Chadwell

West-Ark Church of Christ, Fort Smith, AR
Bulletin Article, 28 March 1999

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