Last night I went to our church's Sunday School teacher's meeting. Our Associate Pastor Bob had a devotional and had me read a section of Scripture for it. He related how Jesus came down to earth to be among us and feel and live the life we're feeling and living. He relates to us because He's been here, He's endured more than we have, even taking on human form to do so. Pastor Bob had me read 1 Peter 1:10-12:
As to this salvation, the prophets who prophesied of the grace that would come to you made careful searches and inquiries, seeking to know what person or time the Spirit of Christ within them was indicating as He predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories to follow. It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves, but you, in these things which now have been announced to you through those who preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven--things into which the angels long to look. 1
Pastor Bob related how we come from a different perspective because "we've always had" the knowledge of the New Testament, it's part of our heritage as Christians, we know it...and so we have an advantage that the prophets would have loved to have. "Except," I thought...except. I used to be as those prophets. I used to be mystified and in the dark, having yet to have things revealed--except that I never knew that they would eventually come clear. The prophets were looking forward in His story--I was lost, even in what was future to them, even though I lived in a world that was bathed in Jesus' grace in the aftereffect of His sacrifice. They had a future hope because they had a present faith. Having come to know Christ, having my own present faith, I have gained the heritage, the ability to look back at the history that has been unveiled, that has belonged to the family of believers from the start. I have gained the ability to look back as a New Testament believer and see how the prophets' prophecies are fulfilled in Christ. And I get to look forward into my future hope of seeing Him face to face, as well. It is a mystery to me, yet to be unveiled, and yet it is a certainty. I know that my Redeemer lives and that I will see His face. Hallelujah!
1 New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation