Joy of the Gospel

The Good News of Jesus Christ

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The Covering of Jesus

We are probably all familiar with the story of how Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit. After they did this, they felt shame because they knew they were naked, and God threw them out of the Garden of Eden. However, if we look at how Adam, Eve, and God responded to the “problem of nakedness,” we might gain a little insight into how God covered them and plans to cover us.

First, we must understand this principle: “The Old Testament is a shadow of good things to come and not the very image of the things. It can never with those animal sacrifices which were offered year by year continually make us perfect” (Hebrews 10:1). In other words, the laws expressed in the Old Testament are not enough to save us. We, therefore, cannot live such a perfect life that it gets us into heaven. Thus, what we discuss here today is a precursor of good to come; it reflects something more significant than what it says on the surface.

So now, we see, in Genesis 3, that Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit, they realized their nakedness; they became ashamed of their nakedness, and, in Genesis 3:7, they made aprons to cover their nakedness. But their aprons were not enough. So God made Adam and Eve “coats of skins and clothed them” (Genesis 3:21). Adam and Eve, thus, attempted to cover themselves, but God desired to cover them more adequately.

Where do we see God similarly covering us? In Isaiah 61:10 (still in the Old Testament), we hear the prophet Isaiah express the joy that God “has clothed us with the garments of salvation, and he covers us with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decks himself with ornaments and as a bride adorns herself with jewels.” In the New Testament, we hear the apostle Paul tell us that “we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven” (2 Corinthians 5:2). Later on, the apostle Paul reminds us that “God made Jesus be sin for us, who knew no sin so that we might be made the righteousness of God in Jesus” (2 Corinthians 5:21). If we read this last verse I just read and insert one letter—the letter K—in the word sin, what the Old Testament foreshadows might become a little clearer to us. Instead of sin, we can say skin. So that changes 2 Corinthians 5:21 to say “God made Jesus to be skin for us, who knew no skin so that we might be made the righteousness of God in Jesus.” How wonderful is that! This little change opens up our minds, doesn’t it? For 1) Jesus became a covering for us, a skin for us, and 2) Jesus was not skin but became skin or flesh. We cannot possibly take 2 Corinthians 5:21 literally when it says that Jesus became sin because Jesus was sinless. But what did he become? He became flesh as it says in John 1:14. He became skin which because of what Adam and Eve did (because indeed they were accomplices), skin became sin, and flesh has an evil nature.

So what does all this mean? It means that when God makes Adam and Eve coats of skin, it foretells us of Jesus Christ who becomes righteous skin for those who believe that he is the son of God and follow his commandments (Romans 10:9). It means that no matter how we try to cover ourselves—through doing right by the law or the world’s standards—we still need God to cover us (cover our sin) to make us acceptable to him. It means that we might think a “skimpy apron” is enough to cover our nakedness, but we need coats! It means that our minds (because of the fall) tend to underdress our sin. It means, ultimately, that we are like children who cannot put the correct clothes on and need God to put our clothes on for us.

Trusting in the “LORD God of Israel”

There was a woman named Naomi. She had two sons who were married. Their wives’ names were Ruth and Orpah. Naomi’s two sons died. Naomi told her daughters-in-law to go back to their mother’s house. Orpah returned, but Ruth said, “For whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge; thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God.” (1)

Before Ruth said this, Naomi said that Ruth’s sister-in-law (Orpah) returned to her mother’s house and her gods. Ruth, though, stayed with Naomi and declared that Naomi’s God would be her God. What made Ruth stay? What made Ruth prefer Naomi over her family? Boaz, Ruth’s future husband, gives the impetus of Ruth’s decision. He says Ruth “[came] to trust…the LORD God of Israel.” (2) What can we do by trusting in the LORD God of Israel? Where can we go? Where can we live? Whom can we live? How and where can we die? Ruth had clear answers to these questions because of her trust in God. (3)

(1) Ruth 1:16
(2) Ruth 2:12
(3) Ruth 1:16-17

Everything

You are
my Provider dear LORD.
There is nothing I need
because You give
me everything.
I do not seek
the satisfaction of
treasure or pleasure
in things,
other than in You.
You are rich!
Your wealth is more
than enough for
me. With You
I have all things.

Persistent

The LORD is
here.
He guides His people.
He is gentle
but persistent
to those He loves.

Not Alone

Christ Jesus,
Son of God,
You are mighty
and loving.
Your Spirit hugs me
(so caring)
when I need comfort.
You love me
(for real)
when I feel hated,
hurt, and misused.
I am not alone with You.

Beyond Me

The LORD is
Fabulous.
I cannot wrap my thoughts
around Him
because He is too big to think
of.
He is
too vast to contain,
and He is
too
present to imagine.

Meditating on God’s Word

We are supposed to speak about God’s Word and be absorbed in it all the time to do what it says. The LORD told Joshua “this book of the law shall not depart out of your mouth; but you shalt meditate in it day and night, that you mayest observe to do according to all that is written in it: for then you will make your way prosperous and then you will have good success.” (1) God commanded Joshua to meditate on God’s Word all the time. When we meditate on God’s Word, we recite it in our mind and recite it verbally; it’s in our memory always. (2) When we make God’s Word our preoccupation, we can have a prosperous occupation—living the way God wants us to. Today, begin to meditate on God’s Word all the time.

(1) Joshua 1:8
(2) Psalm 143:5; Psalm 35:28; Psalm 1:2

What Prayer Does God Always Answer?

Can we have anything we ask for? It seems Jesus says we can when he says “Have faith in God. Whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be removed, and cast into the sea; and doesn’t doubt in his or her heart, but believes those things he or she says will come to pass; he or she will have whatever is asked for. Therefore I say unto you, What things you desire, when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you shall have them.” (1) It appears that we can have whatever we want. However, Jesus is talking about something much more significant.

Jesus is talking about spiritual things. Even Jesus’ disciples made the mistake of taking Jesus’ words as literal instead of spiritual. (3). Many people have experienced praying for things to happen, having unwavering faith they will happen, and having those prayers not being “answered.” We can pray for these things, and sometimes God answers our prayers. However, God wants us to focus on the spiritual things in life. Worldly health and wealth always come secondary to spiritual health and wealth.

God always answers the prayer for the Holy Spirit and the things of the Spirit because He wants to give us the best gifts. Jesus tells us if we ask God for the Holy Spirit, He will always give it to us. (3) What is even more amazing is that some original Greek translations “indicate that what is asked for is already accomplished.” (4) In other words, we have the Holy Spirit; we just have to believe that we got him! The Holy Spirit comforts us and teaches us how to live through difficult times in our lives. (5) Although our prayers may seem to go unanswered, we can have the Holy Spirit through our belief in Jesus Christ. This is the best gift of all!


(1) Mark 11:22-24
(2) Luke 11:7-13
(3) John 6:63
(4) “The Good Gift of Prayer.”
(5) John 14:26

Light Pierces the Clouds

Jesus, my God,
You bless always
and never fail
when I’m in trouble.
In my anguish and sorrow,
You deliver a ray
of sun.
You shine a light
that pierces through
the dark clouds
the enemy sends.
The clouds roll away
and are forgotten.
And,
I only see the Light,
Your son, Jesus Christ.

The Word of God Is Jesus Christ

The personal revelation of Jesus Christ, instead of another person’s words, should determine our obedience to God. No one else’s word should change what God tells us.

Once, God told a prophet not to eat, drink, or return the same way he came. However, a lying prophet convinced this prophet to return to the lying prophet’s house and eat and drink. While they were eating, God spoke through the previously lying prophet and said, “Because you have disobeyed the mouth of the LORD, and have not kept the commandment which I commanded you but came back and ate and drank, you will not be buried in the graves of your ancestors. When the disobedient prophet left the lying prophet’s house, a lion killed him, and his body was left on the road. (1)

God’s Word does not come from “man…but by the revelation of Jesus Christ.” (2) No one else, not a preacher, minister, or angel should change what God has told us through Jesus Christ. (3)

What has God told us? We only have to look in the Bible to see! It is plain and simple. (4) Jesus is the son of God, is God, and is the only way to God. (5) The disobedient prophet followed another word like we can follow another gospel, another way, or another Jesus. Yet, there is no other Jesus, way, or gospel. We must confess that Jesus is Lord to be saved. (6) Plain and simple.


(1) 1 Kings 13:1-24
(2) Galatians 1:12
(3) Galatians 1:8; 2 Corinthians 11:13-15
(4) 2 Corinthians 11:3
(5) John 14:6
(6) Romans 10:9

See

Lord,
You are
everything.
There is nothing else
I need besides
You.
You are the cause and reason
I live.
Because of Jesus,
I will not see punishment.
You have blindfolded me
with your glory.
Who can look at You?
Who has seen
Your face?
Lord, I cannot see
anything
but Your faithfulness.
I see nothing
but Your love,
kindness, mercy, and grace.
I look forward
to incorruption.
I look
forward to seeing
You.

God Tests Us

Difficult times are tests to prove we love God regardless of the circumstances. It is easy to say we love God when everything is going well. However, God gives us tests to “humble us, tests us, know what is in our heart, and see whether we’ll keep His commandments or not.” (1) Jesus can “sympathize with our suffering. He has been tested like us.” (2) We prove our love to God in difficult times. When adversity comes, it’s our opportunity to show God we love Him.


(1) Deuteronomy 8:2
(2) Hebrews 4:15

Rock

Lord,
Jesus,
You are my rock.
Who else can I stand upon?
Who else
is as solid as you,
the foundation
that I build upon?
When all else shakes,
breaks,
and melts away,
Jesus, you are there.
You don’t go away.
You are firm,
strong,
and unmoveable.

For Me

Is not
the Lord on my side?
Is He not for me
rather
than against me?
I will trust on the Lord,
my God:
the one who has raised
me up in the last
day.
I will sing praises
to Him
forever.
The Lord came to me
when I did not
call.

Copyright © 2006-2019 Joy of the Gospel

Dwight A. Lucas II. All rights reserved.