Dr. Stanley Spence Pastor, 1st Baptist Church, Lincolnton
Did you know that when General Lew Wallace began to write the book, Ben Hur, he was an unbeliever? Initially, he was writing to strip Jesus of his divination and portray him only as a man amongst men - not the son of God. However, after researching the life of Jesus, General Wallace realized just like the centurion under the cross “Verily, this is the Son of God.”
When we search the heart of the Gospel and connect to the stories of Jesus, we see a savior and a man amongst men. He was both fully God and fully man. He embodied the very thing that we are and the hope of what we could be. This is why Jesus was so important. We are definitely human beings and, for those who believe in Christ, we are adopted into the family of God. We partake in the divine nature of God, by His doing, not ours.
So, what does the divine nature mean to us? The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control, and the power of our divinity is discovering that these qualities of the Spirit are truly eternal. Both here and in heaven these qualities will survive the judgment. What makes this so good is that truth and trust, joy and happiness, relationship and togetherness will all come together in heaven in a way and profundity yet unknown to man on earth. Occasionally, we see these qualities in a single relationship or with a few friends, but imagine them with the whole of the body of the faithful - enjoying the company of one another with the presence of Christ our Savior. That might be a great hope of Heaven. No more tears of sadness, but a world of rejoicing and brotherhood. That is a future worth embracing if you ask me.
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