Run to your Father and know Him well

January 7, 2008

Marc Trujillo, Asst. Professor of Bible & Theology, Crown College

All you need is Jesus Christ. All that God has done he has accomplished in his Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. Christ is the greatest fulfillment of Scripture, and who explains God best.

In the Old Testament of the Bible, many were hearing of who God was. God was explaining himself through the law, the tabernacle, the prophets, the priests and the kings.

But all these fell short. Christ displays God best. In Christ is God. In Christ, God is known. Any problem, any question, any doubt is all solved in Christ. If it can’t be explained in Christ, it won’t be explained.

My mission is Christ. My message is Christ. My method is Christ. My hope is Christ. My identity is Christ. My future is Christ. My love is Christ. My direction is Christ. My journey is Christ. My life is Christ. My worship is Christ. My peace is Christ.

In John, Chapter 6, Jesus had fed the 5,000. As a result, the people wanted to make Jesus Christ their king by force, so Christ removed himself from the crowd and went up to the mountain. We are told in Mark, Chapter 6 that Jesus went up to the mountainside to pray.

The disciples were in the boat rowing, working, and sweating. The wind was against them, the waves were overpowering them. Their efforts seemed futile. It was past 3 a.m. They were tired, worn out, and exhausted.

Then, they saw something – something faint, growing closer. Something or someone was coming toward them. A shimmer, then a silhouette, then a figure.

All the gospels say, “they were terrified.” Mark says, “they screamed.” Typically, when one gets afraid and screams, he runs away. In the disciple’s situation, there was nowhere to run.

Jesus sees and hears their fear and he simply says, “I am.” It is usually translated, “It is I,” but in the original, it is “I am.” Those two words capture the essence and presence of Christ.

The Lord Jesus Christ walks on the water, the very water that is turbulent, chaotic, and threatening. The water is fighting against the disciples, who are straining, sweating, and pressing. There is Christ walking on the storm saying, “Here I am, in your midst.” In our lives, when the waves are jumping over the sides of the boat, we are to be quiet, waiting, because in the midst of the storm, we will be able to hear, “I am.”

The apostle Paul understood what it meant to follow Christ, even if it cost him his reputation, health, and life. He was a man passionate and compelled to live for Christ.

In 2 Corinthians 11, he wrote about his struggles and the persecutions he faced. “Are they servants of Christ? . . . I am more. I have worked much harder, been in prison more frequently, been flogged more severely, and been exposed to death again and again. . . . I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food; I have been cold and naked. Besides everything else, I face daily the pressure of my concern for all the churches.” (2 Cor 11:23, 27, 28).

In the midst of his experience of turbulence, chaos, and persecutions, Paul heard the words of Christ, “I am.” He knew and understood the high call of Christ. Had you been able to have visited him in his jail cell, after having been beaten, flogged and tortured, where he was wheezing, dripping, and dying, you might have asked him, “Why are you doing this?” He would have said, lying there unable to move and barely able to breath, “because of the cross.”

In 2 Corinthians 11:28, we are told that in the midst of his impoverished situations. he is thinking of his churches. He is concerned for them. His mind is not on his empty stomach, or his dry throat, or the fact he cannot go out and take care of his own needs. He is not thinking of the injustice he finds himself in, he is only consumed by the very presence of friends and fellow brothers open to the whimsical nature of the devil, lying and bewitching them.

He wanted them to be quiet so they could hear, “I am.” The only way to hear Him is to know Him.

In Colossians 2:2 and 2:3, Paul wrote, “My purpose is that they [followers of Christ in Colossae] may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.”

His purpose for us, for his brothers and sisters, is to know Christ. It is to revel in Him, enjoin Him, dance with Him, celebrate Him, and walk with Him.

He invites us to know Him. The way to know Him is to hear Him. In the midst of the chaos and confusion, we are to hear Him, then do we know Him.

It was explained to me once how we can know, enjoy, and revel in Him. In ministry, we are dispensable. God can accomplish his ministry with anyone or anything. He can use stars, people, animals, or even our own technology to fulfill his will, plan, and ministry. Yet, he chooses us. But we are to remember we are dispensable.

It is like my children. When it comes to chores, I can find a thousand others who would do them better, faster, and without complaining. Their relationship with me is not based or founded upon whether they do their chores.

Yet, when I come home from work and my children jump in my arms, or when we are at the dinner table talking about our day, or we are at bedtime reading a story or simply having fun together, those times are indispensable. Those times cannot be bought. No other human being can replace them!

When God sees us running to Him and jumping in His arms, we are indispensable to Him. So, I tell you, run to your Father and know Him well.