"Jesus said to them, 'Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.'"
"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever."
"'I am the Alpha and the Omega,' says the Lord God, 'who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.'"
---There is a God, a God who is above all things, a God who controls all things by his Word, a Word which created everything by it's command, and a Word who became flesh. This God tabernacles in flesh, the man Jesus Christ. This is our trust and our refuge. Not fleeting promises and human resolutions, but eternal and unchanging Word. Today this is what presses on me. Today was communion Sunday at my church (though communion ought to be a part of the regular order of worship, a debate for later), and as I held the elements in my hand the dichotomy between the will of man (fickle, unreliable) and the will of God (constant and efficacious) came to the forefront of my mind. Jesus Christ gave up his body to take it up again. Jesus Christ shed his blood to bathe us in it. By death and resurrection he conquers death and by the shedding of his blood he appeases the wrath of God. The church was given these elements not just as a reminder, but as a means to, by faith, feast on Christ as the bread of life. In the words of the Confession 29.1:
Our Lord Jesus, in the night wherein He was betrayed, instituted the sacrament of His body and blood, called the Lord’s Supper, to be observed in His Church, unto the end of the world, for the perpetual remembrance of the sacrifice of Himself in His death; the sealing all benefits thereof unto true believers, their spiritual nourishment and growth in Him, their further engagement in and to all duties which they owe unto Him; and, to be a bond and pledge of their communion with Him, and with each other, as members of His mystical body.Communion is the normative means by which we feast on the bread of life Christ offered to the masses in John 6. We grow, we are nourished, we are kept and assured of his salvation in communion. The beauty of the mystery in the Eucharist is a tangible way we can participate in the mystery of the incarnation. That this becomes a reality to me is my communion prayer. As I feast spiritually upon Christ, that Christ transforms me into a new creation. The transformation of man by his own power is as impossible because of our sinful state, our human frailty and also by our creaturely finite nature. This type of transformation is guaranteed if the promise that "he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion" is true. Our salvation is secured by the Word of God, and not by the will of man. I can move on and accept my failures and shortcomings because it is the Lord who saves, utterly and completely. He has always saved by grace through faith, and it has always been on the finished work of Jesus Christ and Christ alone. This is the wonder of the church, the mystical body, which we dine with, during communion.
As 2012 starts, I have my goals and I have things I would like to accomplish. With human resolve I will undertake those things. This, however, is all brought to nothing when compared to the resolve of God made flesh who came to tabernacle among us in Christ and call his bride to life. That resolve, the eternal decree of unchangeable God, is a resolution the bride can trust. We are justified in order to be glorified, and God does not fail. Unlike the Mayans, the prophecy of God will stand true.