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He Set It All Aside
By Dan Adkins And Tracy Dartt
Somewhere Upon A Distant Land
Long Ago, And Far Away
Was A Crown Of Gold And Precious Jewels
Still Unequaled To This Day
It Was A Crown Desired By Kings And Princes
Throughout The Years Of Time
But The King For Whom The Crown Was Made
For Love... Set His Crown Aside
So The Story Goes, This King Of Old
Sat Upon A Throne So Bright
Glowing Like A Rainbow In The Sky
And Around It Day And Night
Those Who Loved Him, Paid Him Tribute There
But They All Began To Cry
When The King For Whom The Throne Was Made
For Love... Set His Throne Aside
In That City Fair And Beautiful
Far Beyond The Dreams Of Men
Stood A Palace Of Majestic Grace
Never Rivaled, Now Or Then
It Was A Place Of Royal Adoration
But The Cheers Turned To A Cry
When The King For Whom It All Was Made
For Love... Set It All Aside
He Set Aside A Golden Crown
For A Crown Of Thorns That Day
He Set Aside A Kingly Throne
And Received A Cross Of Shame
And He Traded Off The Palace Grand
For A Borrowed Tomb, You See
All He Gave Was All For Love
And The Love Was All For Me
All He Gave Was All For Love
And The Love Was All For Me
Copyright 1996 Chestnut Mound
Danadkins1@hotmail.com or danadkinsministries.tripod.com
But one time about six years ago I was complaining to someone about the Christian church, when suddenly an image flashed in my mind of a bride and a groom on their wedding day. In that mental image I walked up to the groom and said to him, "Your bride sure is ugly." Now no one would ever do that because no matter how unattractive I may personally find a bride, to the groom that bride is wonderful, she’s radiant and beautiful. Then then Lord spoke to my heart and said, "Tim, every time you criticize my church you’re telling me, that my bride is ugly."
In the years of Communist domination of East Germany there was a symbol which brought hope and comfort to believers in Jesus. A huge TV tower had been erected to broadcast atheistic propaganda. Near the top of the building was a globe-shaped structure housing a restaurant. The remarkable thing was that the sunlight always reflected off the globe in the shape of a cross. The authorities were embarrassed and tried everything they could think of to prevent this optical phenomenon, even covering the dome with paint. But nothing worked. A pastor commented wryly, "No matter how hard they try, they can’t get rid of the Cross!" Paul would agree and would say, "God forbid that we even try to do that!"
Illus.: “I Can’t Change Jesus”
Bill Irwin, a man who is blind, has a talking computer he uses to study the Bible. He’s had a few chuckles over some of the pronunciations. "For a long time," Bill says, "the computer pronounced Holy Bible as ’holly bibble’ until I figured out how to modify it." But there was one thing Bill couldn’t change. The computer uses the Spanish pronunciation for Jesus Christ--HEYsus Krist. "The programmer is Hispanic," Bill told me with a smile, "and he made sure that HEYsus Krist cannot be altered."
I like that. It reminds me that among the things in life that can be changed to suit my taste, one remains tamper-resistant--I can’t change Jesus.
When life is unsettled, I gain great comfort from the Bible’s affirmation that "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever" (Heb. 13:8). But the statement is also a stern rebuke to my tendency to try to modify t...
Some time ago I was reading about the 18th century German sculptor Johann Heinrich von Dannecker. His skills were impressive. He could bring stone to life with his tools. At the height of his powers, he wanted to do something special with his gifts -- he wanted to shape a statue of Christ that would stand out as a witness to his world. For two years he chiselled and scraped and polished the marble, till he was certain that it carried the likeness of his Lord. But he wanted to test his work on eyes that wouldn’t lie. So he went out to the street, and brought in a young girl. He took her into his studio, and he set her down in front of the shrouded stone. Uncovering it, he asked her, Do you know who this is? No, sir! she replied. But he must be a very great man. And Dannecker knew that he’d failed. The statue was good enough for kings and nobles, but it wasn’t good enough to speak the word about Christ.
He was discouraged. He was disheartened. He was depressed. But he knew that he had to try again. So he set his hand to the task. Six years it took him this time! Every day, painstakingly, shaping and carving. Finally it was done. And again, he brought in a child as his first critic. He took off the shroud, and asked her gently, Who is that? Legend has it that tears came to her eyes as she recognized Jesus. It was enough. Dannecker had finished his task. He had created his masterpiece. He had given visible shape to his faith. And later, to a friend, he told the secret of those last six years. It was as if, he said, Christ had joined him daily in his little room. He felt the nearness of his Lord. He sensed the glory of his Presence. All Dannecker had to do, really, was to transfer the vision of Christ that he received to the block of marble.
It’s a powerful story, isn’t it? But there’s more to it. There’s another chapter that comes later, one so striking that it actually makes John’s vision come alive.
Some years later, the French emperor Napoleon Bonaparte saw Dannecker’s work. He was very impressed. He sent for the sculptor, and he had a commission for him -- Make me a statue of the goddess Venus for the Louvre! he said. Quite an honor! To be chosen as the creator of a work of art like that! Who could refuse? But you know what?! Dannecker did! He refused the commission. He gave up that honor. And you know why? This is what he told Napoleon:
"A man who has seen Christ can never employ his gifts in carving out a pagan goddess!"
DL Moody was a great evangelist from Chicago. He went to England once and met a young man there that wanted to preach in his church. Moody agreed thinking that he would never see him again. To his dismay he recieved a letter that said the young man would be in his town shorlty and wanted to take him up on the offer. Moody was going out of town that week and agreed to let the man preach, but he warned the deacons to be ready in case it was a real flop. When Moody returned from his business his wife informed him that revival had broken out in his church and that "he needed to be converted". The young man preached every night on the same text, John 3:16, speaking of the love of God, from his heart. Moody went and he said he was indeed converted. He said I used to preach the judgment side of the cross, now I focus on the grace side of the cross, I used to preach mainly on the wrath of God, now I preach he said on the love of God. His life and ministry were forever changed. We need to experience a renewal of the Love of Christ in our Lives.
Strongs says it this way "Christ and the believer have the same life. They are not separate persons linked together by some temporary bond of friendship,-they are united by a tie as close and indissoluble as if the same blood ran in their veins."
HAS GOD REVEALED HIMSELF IN OTHER RELIGIONS?
Karl Barth was lecturing to a group of students at Princeton. One student asked the German theologian "Sir, don’t you think that God has revealed himself in other religions and not only in Christianity?" Barth’s answer stunned the crowd.
With a modest thunder he answered, "No, God has not revealed himself in any religion, including Christianity. He has revealed hims...
PROFOUNDLY HIDDEN DIVINITY
“...The Virgin birth denotes particularly the mystery of revelation. It denotes the fact that God stands at the start where real revelation takes place – God and not the arbitrary cleverness, capability or piety of man.
In Jesus Christ God comes forth out of the profound hiddenness of his divinity in order to act as God among us and upon us. That is revealed and made visible to us in the sign of the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, but it is grounded upon the fact signified by the Virgin birth, that here in this Jesus God himself has really come down and concealed himself in humanity. It was because he was veiled here that he could and had to unveil himself as he did at Easter...”
SOURCE: Karl Barth, Church Dogmatics, I.2 pp. 182-183.
I’m sure most of you know what an oxymoron is. It’s a figure of speech that seems to contradict itself. There are lists and lists of the things, and here are some of my favorites: Artificial Grass, boneless ribs, big town, harmless lie, communist party, green oranges, easy labor, fresh frozen, jumbo shrimp, cafeteria food, military intelligence, one choice, random order, slumber party, freezer burn, small fortune, government organization, living dead, same difference, plastic glasses, peace force, pretty ugly, head butt, working vacation, Dodge Ram, work party, healthy tan, good grief, and devout atheist, as well as its sequel, Thank God I’m an Atheist.
Chapter 5 of the book of Revelation gives us another oxymoron. Something that sounds impossible, but yet it is still true. (www.oxymoronlists.com)