From Beginning to End—Life Application for November 27, 2016

November 20, 2016 No Comments »
From Beginning to End—Life Application for November 27, 2016

By David Faust

faustA good story grabs your attention at the start and never lets your imagination go until the end. It’s not enough for a movie to start well; it should end well too. The same is true for a speech, a sermon, and an interpersonal relationship. A strong start is good, but it’s better if the story stays strong to the end.

Christ, the Ruler of the Cosmos

Jesus proclaimed, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End” (Revelation 22:13).

These descriptors belong to Jesus Christ in a cosmic sense. He is the Creator of the universe and the one in whom history will find its final consummation. Bible commentator Albert Barnes put it this way: “He originated the whole plan of salvation, and he will determine its close; he formed the world, and he will wind up its affairs. In the beginning, the continuance, and the end, he will be recognized as the same being presiding over and controlling all.”

• Christ is the Beginning and the End of creation. “Through him all things were made” (John 1:3). “In him all things were created” (Colossians 1:16). God’s ultimate plan is “to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ” (Ephesians 1:10).

• Christ is the Beginning and the End of the Bible. In the opening pages of Genesis he is Eve’s promised offspring who will crush the serpent’s head. In the final verses of Revelation he is the coming King who offers the water of life to thirsty souls.

• Christ is the Beginning and the End of God’s salvation plan. He is the Messiah who fulfilled centuries of prophecy, the sin offering whose sacrificial blood brings forgiveness, the death-defying Lord whose resurrection unlocks the door of eternal life for all who follow him faithfully.

Christ, Our Personal Friend

At the same time, it’s also helpful to think about Jesus as the Beginning and the End not only in a cosmic sense but also in a personal sense. He is the author and finisher of our faith. If our lives are a story, Christ is the parentheses in which the words appear. If our lives are a work of art, he is the frame around the picture. If our lives are a building, he is the foundation and the roof. If our lives are a race, he is the starting gun and the finish line. If our lives are the alphabet, he is the A and the Z.

• He’s with us from birth to death, in every season of life from infancy to old age. He was there when we were conceived in the womb, and he will be there when we draw our final breath.

• He’s with us in our work—from the beginning to the end of our careers.

• He’s with us in our families, shepherding us along through every stage of marriage and child-rearing.

• He’s there from start to finish in our ministries, calling us to serve and sustaining us through each long day and lonely night.

The psalmist wrote, “I will sing praise to my God as long as I live” (Psalm 146:2). In every phase of life, Christ deserves to be our Savior and Lord. But that’s not all. From start to finish, he also wants to be our friend.

David Faust serves as the Associate Minister at East 91st Street Christian Church in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Based on International Sunday School Lesson, © 2013, by the Lesson Committee. Scripture quotations are from the New International Version ©2011, unless otherwise indicated.

As you apply today’s Scripture study to everyday life, read Engage Your Faith by David Faust and the correlating Evaluation Questions.

Daily Readings

Nov. 21

M.

John 7:32-36

You Will Not Find Me

Nov. 22

T.

John 7:37-43

This Is the Messiah

Nov. 23

W.

Revelation 1:4b-8

The Lord God, the Almighty

Nov. 24

T.

Revelation 2:1-7

Your First Work Rewarded

Nov. 25

F.

Revelation 7:9-12

Worship Without End

Nov. 26

S.

Isaiah 43:1-7

Promised Redemption Fulfilled

Nov. 27

S.

Revelation 22:12-21

Yes, I Am Coming Soon!

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