for i delivered to you as of first importance what i also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures, [1 corinthians 15:3-4]
pure gospel! Jesus came as a man, just as the prophets of God foretold. he lived and died to fulfill God’s promises to his beloved children. he was put in the ground and burst forth with full authority over death! now he lives, and sits at the right hand of God’s throne to intercede for us, as he sanctifies us in his truth, preparing us to be presented as a pure and spotless bride, to spend eternity in the glorious presence of God, filled with inexpressible joy!
paul received this gospel treasure and now presents it as his life-long mission. he delivers it as of first importance. it is his God given task and his joyous privilege to bring the good news of Jesus to the gentiles.
so when you look at your own life, does the gospel of Jesus Christ shine through as of first importance? what would your family/friends/coworkers say? what would your time and money point to? how about your browsing history? these are questions we should be asking ourselves often, because they point to what we are seeking with our whole heart.
can we say with the psalmist that we praise God with our whole heart? praise the Lord! i will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart, in the company of the upright, in the congregation. [psalm 111:1]
and seek him with our whole heart? with my whole heart i seek you; let me not wander from your commandments! [psalm 119:10]
and stand firm with our whole heart? the insolent smear me with lies, but with my whole heart i keep your precepts; [psalm 119:69]
and confess our dependence with our whole heart? with my whole heart i cry; answer me, o Lord! i will keep your statutes. [psalm 119:145]
we, as children, heirs, and ambassadors of the Almighty One, must be marked by seeking the Lord with our whole hearts, with the gospel as of first importance to us. if that doesn’t describe you, and if your life is marked by other greater loves, there is good news. the Lord’s gift of repentance allows us to return to satisfaction in him. not sheepishly. not timidly. because of the blood of Christ, we can do this with our whole heart!
i will give them a heart to know that i am the Lord, and they shall be my people and i will be their God, for they shall return to me with their whole heart. [jer 24:7]
today, in the presence of God, come and ask him to be your first love. as of first importance in your life. it IS his desire for you, so you will not be denied! keep seeking. keep knocking. keep asking. he is waiting for you with open arms.
~ arwen eastman