Tuesday, February 4, 2014

The Ministry of Jesus, After His Crucifiction

After his suffering, he presented himself to them and gave many convincing proofs that he was alive. He appeared to them over a period of forty days and spoke about the kingdom of God.
Acts 1:3

...that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, and then to the Twelve. After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers and sisters at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep.
1 Cor. 15:3-6

It has been my experience that many Christians ignore these passages, or have not heard of them at all. To millions, Christ's ministry ended at the cross. As important as this is, because He died for us, let me say that He also lives for us. The overwhelming proofs offered by His ministry on the earth, after he arose, left no room for doubt in those who saw Him. Still, this is looking backwards.

The wretched church I grew up in taught that Jesus came to set the ultimate example of how we should live, in order to earn our salvation. His life and the Sermon on the Mount, showed us the way. Now it was up to us to try real hard to be as good as we could. If we did our best, surely God could ask no more.

How many years were required for me to escape this goody, goody religion! I knew absolutely nothing of blood atonement, the present ministry of Christ, or of His return for his saints in the Rapture. Not grace, but human effort was the key to being saved.

Brother Gadd said it so well. "It's not hard getting people saved. What's hard is getting them lost."

Since His ascent into heaven, what is the present ministry of Jesus? What is He doing now? Paul makes it very clear that our salvation is no longer at risk. It is a finished work. So, does Jesus have a ministry now, today, in our behalf? We can say, with confidence, that the work of the believer's salvation is over. Jesus said "It is finished". Jesus is now our Advocate. This is His present ministry.

My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have an Advocate with the Father---Jesus Christ, the Righteous One.
1 John 2:1, NIV

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