The Unbroken Presence
Matthew 28:20 (NIV UK)
Scripture re-assures us that Jesus is always there, with us and in us.
For many Christians this idea is accepted but perhaps not understood fully. What does it mean? What relevance does it have to our daily lives?
In calling those who would follow him Christ explained that his intent was that “they might be with him” (Mark 3:14). For the first disciples, however, being a follower was more than just being a companion of Jesus and a devotee of what Jesus taught: above all it was that the Father had given all believers to Jesus to be with him (John 17:24). Jesus is Emmanuel, which means, “God with us” (Matthew 1:23). Being a follower of Jesus means always walking every day in the reality of God’s presence.
When the disciples eventually caught on to the idea that Jesus would die they were distressed because they felt Jesus would no longer be with them. Christ’s words of comfort were that his Spirit would remain with them and be in them. Even when some of them deserted Jesus at the cross, Jesus did not desert them. If God had deserted us, then there would be no life at all because it is in Christ that everything and everyone is sustained (Colossians 1:17). Rather the cross is about how we were crucified with Jesus. His resurrection is about how we are raised with him. He is always with us, and we are always involved with him.
Even if we wanted to, we cannot flee or hide from the ever-present Spirit of Jesus. That may be a fearful thought to some, but actually it is the gateway to comfort and peace of mind. At the worst moments of our life, Jesus is still there. He does not leave us or forsake us in the same way that the disciples left and forsook him. Jesus is with us, in us through the Spirit, and eternally “for us”. Nothing “can separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:39).
There is no disruption in God’s presence. We live in unbroken fellowship with him. “And surely” said Jesus, “I am with you always” (Matthew 28:20).
Father, thank you that your Spirit surrounds us and that we walk every day in unbroken fellowship with you through your Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ.
Study by James Henderson
About the Author:
James Henderson is the National Ministry Leader for Grace Communion International in the UK and Ireland. You are welcome to attend any of our local congregations. For details of your nearest local congregation, check on our website, www.wcg.org.uk under the ‘Churches’ tab, or ring +44 (0)1858 437099.