The Mighty Voice of the Risen Lord
To understand, and to have something to say to, the world and the church, we need to hear the mighty voice of the risen Lord. Being prophetic is not the same as being critical or being clever. Being prophetic to world and church requires that we hear and believe and obey the mighty voice of Jesus Christ. He is Lord of all, and He is head of the church. What He says directs the life of the Church and the destiny of the whole world, even the whole cosmos.
Jesus Christ who speaks to us is of incomparable glory. He is full of authority, purity, piercing discernment, active power, and deafening command. He holds the church in His hand, and He has a word that cuts through to the heart of all we need to hear. To encounter the glorious Jesus Christ is like looking into the sun in full strength.
We must hear this Jesus, the Jesus of resurrection glory. Without our encountering His glory we will belittle His authority. We will toy with His word, rather than tremble at it. We will play act our Christian lives, rather than fall down nearly dead at His feet. We will be beguiled by the other voices that demand our attention, rather than cherish up His word in our hearts, even if that word seem an oddity in our world.
Hearing the voice of Jesus Christ, the risen Lord is to hear the voice of Him who has conquered all of sin, death and evil and so who has power over both death and life. And that is the power of an indestructible life. The heart of this great victory is his offering of himself as sacrificial atonement for the sins of the world. “You were slain, and by your blood you ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation, and you have made them a kingdom and priest to our God, and they shall reign on the earth.” (Rev. 5:9-10)
To be in the Spirit of God means that we are given a constant slap-down by the glory of Jesus Christ. Even for the humble, the glory of Jesus Christ will cause us to fall down as though dead. For the proud, the arrogant, the rebellious, the unbelieving, the disobedient – the slap-down of the glory of Jesus Christ will bring issues to a head and unmask where the heart really is. For the humble, the slap-down of glory will be followed by the uplifting of the grace of God. And we will say, “Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening.”