By Him creation consists. “For by him were all things created that are in heaven and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones or dominions or principalities or powers; all things were created by him and for him” (Col. 1:16). How many Christians ever think of Christ as the One “by whom all things are created,” as Colossians puts it; “by whom all things were made: as John puts it; “by whom God made the worlds,” as Hebrews put it? Why did God make the universe, anyway? He made it that one day Christ might be all in all, that one day, from tiniest electron to mightiest planet, it might glorify Jesus. Scientists cannot give the reason for the universe: Christ is the reason. Creation is now enslaved in corruption, but one day it will display the glory of Christ, the bondage of sin will be broken, the Sons of God be manifested. And Christ not only created the universe and is its object but He sustains it now. The very existence of each of us, to say nothing of our salvation, depends on Him. Without Him the universe would fall apart.
By Him redemption consists. In order to conform men to the image of His Son, God gave His Son. There is no salvation in any other.
By Him the Gospel consists. The Gospel is simply the good news about Jesus, that He came, died, and rose again. It is not a program, plan, or philosophy that saves, but a Person. It takes a Person to reach persons, a Life to reach lives. The Gospel is a personal matter: “HE shall save His people from THEIR sins.” “I if I be lifted up will draw all men unto ME.”
By Him the Bible consists. True, we see Christ in the light of the Scriptures, for they are they which testify of Him. But we can see the Scriptures only in the light of Christ. He is the Key to the Scriptures. He expounded unto His disciples in all the Scriptures the things concerning HIMSELF. All roads lead to Him throughout the Book. Someone has said that the Pentateuch gives us the foreshadowings of Christ; the Prophets, the foretellings of Christ; the Psalms, the feelings of Christ; the Gospels the facts of Christ; the epistles, the fruits of Christ.
By Him the church consists. “God gave him to be head over all things to the church which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all” (Eph. 1:22,23). We are married to Him, members of His Body. Any group that feeds on itself and not on Christ is a monstrosity, for it is a headless body.
By Him doctrine consists. Some Christians become disciples of a phrase instead of a person, they harp on one string and ride one hobby. Some get off on a tangent on sanctification, for instance. But sanctification, strictly speaking, is not just a doctrine: Christ is our sanctification (1 Cor. 1:30). Spurgeon said, “Holiness is not the way to Christ; Christ is the way to holiness.” Better still, Christ is our holiness.1
- Vance Havner, Jesus Only Devotional Meditations (Old Tappan: Fleming H. Revell Company, 1946) ↩