Who is exalted?

Many want endorsement through signs and wonders, after all-

God publicly endorsed Jesus the Nazarene by doing powerful miracles, wonders, and signs through him.

Acts 2:22

Yet we forget that endorsement was not enough

Jesus was betrayed. With the help of lawless Gentiles, you nailed him to a cross and killed him.

Acts 2:23

When we are right in our own eyes we will stop at nothing to arrange the world in our image – even at the cost of the Way the Truth and the Life.

But God … raised him back to life, for death could not keep him in its grip.

Acts 2:24

The Father’s sovereign power was so much greater than we people in our arrogance could produce. Not even death was enough to stop Jesus.

Now he is exalted to the place of highest honour in heaven, at God’s right hand.

Acts 2:33

When we want endorsement, we are in danger of becoming conceited and arrogantly arranging the world in our image. Let us rather exalt Jesus to the highest place and acknowledge that he alone is sovereign, no matter what appearances are.

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Photo by Joshua Earle on Unsplash

Best way to reach the world for Jesus?

What is the best way to reach our fallen world? Some advocate a clear understandable presentation of the Gospel, Others say people need to see miracles, signs and wonders. Paul did not go with either but preached Christ crucified.

 Jews demand signs and Greeks look for wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified: a stumbling-block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles. (1 Corinthians 1:22-23NIV)

Christ crucified is a stumbling block to those wanting miraculous intervention for it shows Jesus in weakness, the very condition God is supposed to find abhorrent.

Christ crucified is foolishness to those who want to show the wisdom of the Gospel. Who would choose to follow Jesus along a road that leads to the Cross?

but to those whom God has called … Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God (1Corinthians 1:24NIV)

Both our presentation of the Gospel and the miracles God performs through us bring the focus to us. The original question, ‘What is the best way …?’ implicitly focuses attention on the messenger and the skills they choose instead of Jesus.

Paul lifts up Jesus, however that makes him look – whether foolishness or a stumbling block. This begs the question, Am I willing to entrust the Gospel of Jesus to Jesus himself? Am I willing to trust him for his wisdom and follow him wherever he might lead in presenting it?