A Christian is an impregnable person. He is a person that never can be conquered. Emmanuel became man to make the church and every Christian to be one with him. Christ's nature is out of danger of all that is hurtful. The sun shall not shine, the wind shall not blow, to the church's hurt. For the church's Head ruleth over all things and hath all things in subjection. Therefore let all the enemies consult together, this king and that power, there is a counsel in heaven which will disturb and dash all their counsels. Emmanuel in heaven laugheth them to scorn.
As I'm sure you all know I love Richard Sibbes (have you read the Bruised Reed yet?). I was reminded of this quote once again by the struggles of an acquaintance.It's one of my faves.
Sibbes here reminds me a little of Torah and Numbers in particular. Nothing could prevent God from delivering his people, not the many enemies without nor the people delivered. Just so, nothing can prevent Christ from fully redeeming his church. He has already done it in fact and if we are in Christ, we have nothing to fear from what may be done to us or even from ourselves and our own weaknesses. Even the enemy of self is under his subjugation. For those of us bleeding out from self-inflicted wounds it is powerful to remember that he controls all things and works them together for the good of his people. Of course this turns our normal perception on it's head for it means that when evil comes there is ultimately goodness hidden in the evil which we receive by Christ. All our sufferings are good, even those self-inflicted ones. Evil then is turned in on itself by the power of the crucified and risen Christ.
Of course we are not safe from evil because we are special, get things right, or feel the right way, but because we are in Christ. We are weak and we fail and pain comes, but Christ has succeeded even when we feel like utter failures. Christ is victorious even when we feel like we have been completely conquered by others' cruelty or our weaknesses. No suffering harms us in Christ. In Christ. No two sweeter words may comfort us in trial. All the promises of God find their yes in Christ. That is why it is through him we utter our amen to God-for his glory.
Ultimately it is all about him and his glory, glory revealed in suffering, Christ's and ours. This is why God upholds us-for Christ's sake and for the glory of his Name. Not because one day we would "pay him back" and be a good return investment. No from beginning to end, salvation is of God and he alone. That is why we may rest so securely in it, That is why we can laugh with God to the scorn of his enemies (and our old man is certainly one of them) and not fear what they may or may not do. He will do what he has set out to accomplish, and he has set out to make us his own sons, at one with him. These sufferings are his way of making it happen.
And finally when we are revealed as the sons of God and with Christ in his glory we will see just how powerful our God is. On that day I'm sure we'll laugh at how foolish we were to cower fearfully in the impenetrable fortress that is Christ-which even now we reside in.
Anyway that is where my mind has been wandering lately.