4 It is the Lord your God you must follow, and him you must revere. Keep his commands and obey him; serve him and hold fast to him. Deuteronomy 13:4
Our world is full of invitations to believe in a vast array of things: karma, the goodness of humanity, military power, personal experience, horoscopes, palm readings, fate. Each claims truth and the power to bring about ultimate desires. None, however, can deliver on the promises and each is mediated by a human being with self-interest.
The God of the Bible has a more than 7000-year history of promises kept, beginning with Adam and Eve, Noah, and Abraham. Jesus is the very presence of the Divine in human flesh and blood who was seen to be publicly crucified and publicly risen from the dead. The extraordinary power of his Holy Spirit was witnessed and personally experienced by over 500 people on Pentecost and thousands in the days immediately following. This living God continues to transform the lives of those who believe in him, who seek from him everything good.
To believe in God is not simply a matter of intellect, assent to various propositions; it is the engagement of heart and mind, body and soul, material and spiritual possessions in pursuit of the greatest good – the union of our will with God’s. Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life by which we have access to this greatest good. Discipleship is following him, revering him, observing all that he commanded, serving him and clinging to him. His invitation “follow me” is an invitation to a life of eternal grace and love. Nothing else can deliver on that promise.
Prayer: Holy God, help us to recognize the false claims to truth and happiness and to find our greatest good and highest hopes fulfilled in you alone; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen