Dec 17, 2018
Many times in my life I’ve fretted over trying to figure out God’s will for my life. Until. And thank You, Jesus, for the good untils of life. Until I realized God’s word is His will, and His word takes care of 98% of my questions. The critical step is taking the time to read it and understand it. By the way, His word is the Bible.
For example, last week I talked about fear and anxiety. Did you know that peace and abundant life are some of the spoils of war Jesus won on the cross during His showdown with death and evil?
(I am going to take it for granted you know about Jesus’ death on the cross, but if you don’t, here are some free resources where you can read about it.)
Isaiah 53:12 says, “Because of this I will divide to Him with the great, and with the strong He shall divide the spoil; because He poured out His soul to death; and He was counted with those transgressing; and He bore the sin of many, and made intercession for those transgressing.”( LITV)
Let’s take a closer look at the first phrase. God the Father is speaking about Jesus. Divide to Him with the great sounds a little awkward to our modern ears, but divide is the Hebrew word, châlaq (khu LAK). It means to distribute like portioning out smooth stones that were used to cast lots. (Englishmen drew straws. Hebrews used stones, apparently.)
The word great is rab and it means abundant in quantity. So, here we have a picture that God is going to portion out Jesus among the many. The 1898 version of Young’s Literal Translation states, “Therefore I give a portion to him among the many...”
The last part of the phrase says “and with the strong He shall divide the spoil.” Spoil is shâlâl (sha LAL) and it is literally booty as in something gained that is valuable.
The complete picture of this phrase shows God allowing for Jesus to be distributed among numerous people, and then Jesus distributing valuable goods to those people. Young’s states, “And with the mighty he apportioneth spoil...”
So what are these valuable goods?
The Bible says Jesus won our salvation. Salvation is translated sōtēria and sōzō. Sōtēria means deliverance, preservation, safety, salvation, deliverance from the molestation of enemies. Sōzō means to save, keep safe and sound, to rescue from danger or destruction one (from injury or peril) to save a suffering one (from perishing), i.e. one suffering from disease, to make well, heal, restore to health. (Strong’s Concordance)
You receive salvation by inviting Jesus into your life. This salvation rescue paves the way for us to be filled with the Holy Spirit which includes more valuable goods. There are gifts of the Holy Spirit and fruits of the Spirit (love, joy, peace, etc) and the ministry of the Holy Spirit.
Jesus summed it up when He said He came to give us life and life more abundantly. (John 10:10) That abundant kind of life includes peace.
Here is what Albert Barnes’ Notes on the Bible has to say about the abundant life Jesus gives:
Literally, that they may have abundance, or that which abounds. The word denotes that which is not absolutely essential to life, but which is superadded to make life happy. They shall not merely have life - simple, bare existence - but they shall have all those superadded things which are needful to make that life eminently blessed and happy.
That means here now. Not just in heaven. But when someone distributes something to you, it implies you take it or receive it. I have asked Jesus into my heart. I have salvation, but if I don't use what He's given me, all that stuff for an abundant life, I can go unblessed and unhappy. I want it all, and I'll bet you do too. Today, I'm making a decision to receive peace. And I'm going to wake up and receive it tomorrow. And the next day... Because I'll never find peace anywhere else anyway. In fact, that is why you can't find peace. You receive it. Jesus is my peace, and God gave Him for me and to me.
That is the way to live that abundant life. Just receive it. Ahh... what a relief.
God provided that Jesus be distributed among anyone who invites Jesus into their heart. Then Jesus distributes to us the valuable goods of salvation.
What do you need? Is it peace? Is it joy? Maybe it’s a job. Comfort. Healing. Whatever it is, why not start a conversation with Jesus and receive what He has won for you?
Image by Keem Ibarra courtesy of Unsplash
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