13 April 2012

At the Name of Jesus

If you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified, you do not have to wonder where to find Him. You are in the right place, where the Lord has risen for you, just as He said, and where His messenger has been established upon this Cornerstone of the crucified and risen Christ Jesus.

This is where you see Him, even now, by faith; who at the last shall stand upon the earth, and with your own eyes, from your own flesh, you shall see Him, just as He is, and you will be like Him. That is His promise to you, and His Word is true.

But are you afraid that you will not be able to find Him?
Or, are you more afraid that He will find you?

It is right that you should fear the Lord, your God, but do not be afraid. Rather, let your fear be tempered by love and governed by faith, so that you lay hold of His feet and worship Him.

He has risen from the dead, but He has not departed from you. He has taken His stand upon the earth, from Jerusalem to Galilee, even to the ends of the earth. And He comes to meet you on the way, in the proclamation and confession of His Word.

He goes before you, through death into life, but He does not turn His back on you. He calls you to Himself and greets you as His own dear brother.

Take to heart what that means — that you are not only His disciple, but His brother. For you also, by your Baptism into His tomb and out again, are a son of God in Christ.

It is by His Name, with which you have been named in Holy Baptism, that you are raised up to stand in the presence of God, to live and walk with Christ.

In the end, every tongue will confess that holy Name of Jesus, and there will be no denying it in heaven or on earth. No amount of money will silence that confession.

For now, sinful unbelief, hardness of heart, the love of money and the fear of man, cause men to tremble and shake like an earthquake and bring them to death in body and soul. But you bear the Name of the crucified and risen Christ in your body and life, as a Christian; so that you confess His Name, His Cross and Resurrection, with your lips and your life. Let that be the blessed privilege and purpose that guards and governs your life on earth.

In all your words and actions, remember that Christ Jesus has been crucified for your transgressions, and for the sins of the world, and that He has been raised for your justification.

So, too, your fellow Christians, all of them, are likewise sons of God and brothers of Christ. Worship Him by loving them, and worship Him by faith, by laying hold of Him here, where He has planted His feet on earth.

Do not be afraid. For by His gracious Word you shall see Him, as He said. Not for death, but for life.

In the Name + of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

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