The continued work of Jesus

In the book of Acts, Luke (the writer of the Gospel of Luke) begins, “In the first book, O Theophilus, I have dealt with all that Jesus began to do and teach” (1:1).  What’s interesting about this verse is that Luke could have said, “I have dealt with all that Jesus did and taught”, but instead he chooses to imply that what he wrote in the Gospel of Luke was not the end of Christ’s work.

There is a sense, of course, in which the work of Jesus was completed.  When He suffered on the cross, taking on the sins of many, bearing the wrath of God that they deserve, His sacrifice was accepted, and therefore, as He said on the cross, “It is finished” (John 19:30).  And because that work of propitiation was finished, it is said that “when Christ had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God” (Hebrews 10:12).

With that said, Jesus continues to work today.  As an excellent introduction to Luke’s second volume, the author implies that what is to follow is the continued work of Jesus.  And what amazing work it is!  In this volume, having ascended to the Father, He works in a different way: through His people empowered by the Holy Spirit.  Acts is replete with gospel-preaching and thousands upon thousands of souls being saved.

And after the time of Acts, all the way up to this very moment, Jesus has continued to work through the church, His body, His hands, His feet.  Sheep, as you obey Jesus, rejoice in the fact that He is working through you.  And be diligent in the work that He has given you.

Today’s readings:
Psalm 35
Genesis 32
2 Chronicles 9
Acts 1

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