I thought I would begin this discussion with one of my spring pictures that I took yesterday. One of my neighbors has absolutely lovely flower gardens. I was taking some pictures from edge of his yard when he invited me into the yard, and then into the back yard where the myriad of color continued. I thought this most unusual daffodil was strikingly beautiful. So as we begin to work with some of the topics the Lord led last week-end at Conference, I thought I would share with you this lovely creation.
Conference Lessons Summary: Friday Evening Session
Most conference sessions (that I taught) began with a reading of John 17 either by the congregation or by my daughter (who also taught a session). I had given them a copy of the text, so all of us could read together. Normally I teach “word by word” through a given text. This time the Holy Spirit led me to topics within the text. One of those words was “Eternal”. I listed all the words that “popped” in my study in a post below. I found that even though I touched on all of them a bit, I took three main ones and let the others mold themselves around that one.
The first word was “Eternal.” We observed that our God is eternal in His very nature. He does not think in beginnings and ends, because He has neither. So His thoughts about us are eternal also. (Ephesians 1:4; Rev. 13:8) When we “create” something, it comes out of our person and will reveal our person in its structure. Years ago I did creative needlework, and if you look at my work closely, it will tell you quite a bit about me. Now when God created the visible, He was revealed in that creation. (Psalm 19 and Romans 1) So the created world and mankind was eternal in its origin — for that is what He is.
We know sin entered the scene and due to the willing exchange of that which was eternal for that which was passing, the entire creation fell into corruption (Romans 1). But of course we know our God was working all for His eternal plan. Jump forward many, many years and we have a “new Adam.” (Romans 5) The New Covenant is full of this understanding.
John 1:3-4 reads, “Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of men.” We know that our Lord Jesus was the creative agent of all that is seen. (John 1:1-3) Here also we are told of two creations: 1-in the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth through Jesus Christ — the one that was corrupted and finds its end in death; 2-the new life in Jesus Christ.
We brainstormed together in describing (with me writing it all down on the white-board) our Lord Jesus Christ. Then we work with the fact of the New Covenant and that we are in Him and therefore these items are about us in Him. (1 John 4:17b)
Our conclusions for this lesson was really the runway for the sessions to come. The grasping of the eternal fact of life in Jesus Christ and all its ramifications. I find we spend a lot of time in Christian circles, (writing, talking, teaching, preaching) trying to get our flesh to obey. In reality, I believe if we begin to absorb the truth of in Him, our flesh is no match for our Spirit. I believe that is what the Bible says. (Galatians 5:6)
There was much, much more to this lesson, including the understanding of the “new birth” makes us “bone of His bone and flesh of His flesh,” and the true meaning of the “adopted” passage in Ephesians. But this is just a summary for now. The total teaching was app. 1 hr. and 15 minutes.