Q26: What else does Christ’s death redeem?
A: Christ’s death is the beginning of the redemption and renewal of every part of fallen creation, as he powerfully directs all things for his own glory and creation’s good.
For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross. Colossians 1:19-20
Vertical Truth in Faith – What does this truth mean in my relationship with God?
In the very beginning of the Bible, we learn about God’s creation: the heavens, the earth, man, woman, and all the different types of living creatures that live on the earth. In those first two chapters of Genesis we read that, “God saw that creation was good.” And then immediately we learn how man disobeys God and part of man’s punishment is the cursing of the ground to make it harder for the man to survive. So, it wasn’t just man that was ‘subjected to futility,’ but all of creation as well.
Romans 8:20-21 For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.
If you are someone who has put your faith in Christ to redeem you from the punishment of sin, you have more than your own redemption to be thankful for. Revelation, chapter 21, talks about a new heaven and a new earth. Just as you will someday be given a new imperishable body, so will the earth and heaven. Just as you are being sanctified through your life before eternity, so is creation. How amazing it is to think that what we see now is nothing compared to the perfect creation that we will see some day. This is cause for thankfulness to God, for being not just ourredeemer, but one who cares for, redeems, and loves allof His creation.
2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.
The Horizontal Truth in Love – What does this truth mean in my relationship with humanity?
Have you ever stopped to study a beautiful flower or marveled at the way the wind blows through a tall grassy field? Have you ever stood at the base of a mountain and been in awe of the masterful works of creation? I once was driving past a bakery at 5am and saw a woman kneading bread while another moved pastry from the oven to a cooling rack and I thought, “this is beautiful.” Those two women were awake early and preparing for a busy day full of people coming and going, and yet they were calm, smiling, and diligently doing their jobs. In that moment I got a deeper sense of who God is. He cares for the flowers, the fields, and the early risers who work to feed their families. He has given us all our place and job and it’s a beautiful reminder of His love for each of us.
God loves his creation. God loves his people. God loves you. If your life is in Christ, you, in turn, should love his creation, his people, and yourself. Love is a sacrifice of self for the other, just as Jesus has shown us.
1 John 3:16-18 By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers. But if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him? Little children let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.
Practical Truth in Action – How can I put this truth into action?
Romans 8:32 He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?
God is willing, and was willing, to give up Himself for each of us, and his creation. He is the example. What he created was good but was stained by the sin of man. Someday it will be made new. You were good, but were stained by your sin, and some day you will be made new. Until that day comes you have been tasked with the job of sharing these things with others, and with loving them as you do.
Proverbs 15:1-3 A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. The tongue of the wise commends knowledge, but the mouths of fools pour out folly. The eyes of the Lord are in every place, keeping watch on the evil and the good.