26 September 2010

From Concept to Reality

Tim Keller, pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York, states that, "The cure for our self absorption is an encounter with God.  The real God is infinitely glorious, weighty, and beautiful.  When God moves from concept to reality, he changes our beliefs and priorities by displaying his beauty, man's sinfulness, and purifying man by grace.  Once changed, we can live new lives for him."

Holy Name of Jesus
St. Bernardine of Siena was an "Apostle of Italy."  He frequently preached on the Holy name of Jesus.  His preaching attracted sometimes as many as 30,000 people.  It was said of him that by his sermons he "cleansed all Italy from sins of every kind in which sin abounded."  The Sienese were so moved and changed by his preaching that they would put the symbol in the picture above their city gates, businesses and homes.  The preaching of Jesus' name brought peace to an area that was plagued with hostility.  God must have moved from "concept to reality," and Italy was changed because of it.  In God's Word, Philippians 2:9-11 tells us that, "God exalted him *(Jesus) to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."  People are radically changed by Jesus.  What would your city look like if it were radically changed by Jesus?

*Word in parenthesis mine.