“To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:”
In the Old Testament, the Israelites were to reveal God to the world. All of the world was to recognize the Israelites belonged to God. One way this was revealed was that when the Israelites obeyed and followed God, they were blessed. However, when they walked contrary to God and His Word, the people would be cursed. This was displayed repeatedly in the Old Testament, especially during the times of the kings.
When David was king, Israel defeated many enemies and ruled over more land than any previous time in history. Remember how God described King David. “… to whom also he (God) gave testimony, and said, I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after mine own heart, which shall fulfil all my will” (Acts 13:22). When David’s son, Solomon, became king, Israel became the wealthiest nation. Nevertheless, his son was foolish, forgot God, and the kingdom was divided. The nation of Israel did not recover during the Old Testament days. Instead, we discover a nation who, as a whole, continually forsook God, often walking contrary to God’s Word. The Israelites failed in their task to reveal God to the world.
In the New Testament, God sent His only Son to reveal Himself to the World. When Jesus came, He came to show God to the world. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). Jesus not only showed the world the way in which God loved the world, but Jesus revealed God to the world.
However, He disclosed more than that. “6. Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. 7. If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.” (John 14:6-7). Jesus then revealed what it takes not only to see God, but also to go and spend eternity with Him. Philip did not fully understand what Jesus was teaching him. “8. Philip saith unto him, Lord, shew us the Father, and it sufficeth us. 9. Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thouthen,Shew us the Father? 10. Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works” (John 14:9-10). Jesus, God in the flesh, came to because He is the only avenue to reach God. Israel in the Old Testament not only failed to reveal God, but also the way to God.
We can remember one of Jesus’ Disciples, John. He recorded for us his eyewitness accounts of Jesus’ life. He understood the importance of just who Jesus is. He understood the importance of recording the life of Jesus. John had witnessed the events of His life – firsthand! He not only saw, but he understood and believed them. Read why he wanted to share his eyewitness account. “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; 2. (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;) 3. That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ. 4. And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full” (1 John 1:1-4). John understood the importance of not only knowing Jesus, but telling others the importance of knowing Jesus. He, and many like him, revealed Jesus to their world.
Remember, “6. Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6). Philip did not fully understand at first. But because of Jesus and the testimony of those who understood, Christians today can now understand the importance of Jesus. Once we do, it becomes our job to become a living witness to our world. The Israelites failed in the Old Testament. The first Christians succeeded in telling others about Jesus, that many today are Christians because of their testimony. Paul reminded the people that he had told them of Jesus and they had believed (see Colossians 1:4-22), he reminded them that was his ministry. “27. To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory: 28. Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus” (Colossians 1:27-28). Christians need to know that this should be our ministry as well. How are Christians doing today in the revealing of Jesus to those around us?
Are you a living witness that Christ is in you, the only hope of glory?