Mighty and Marvelous Truths
In the movie Forest Gump, Tom Hanks said – “Life’s a box of chocolates”.
I often grab a snack as I go to my quiet place to spend time with God and study the Word. Today I happened to have grabbed a bag of M& M’s on the way to read my Bible. As I began to read the scriptures I found it amusing that I could not only enjoy a chocolate snack, but I could use the M&M’s as an illustration of the points I gleaned from the Word of God.
So if you happen to have some on hand, grab a bag of M&M’s and let’s enjoy them as we set aside some time to spend being encouraged in the Word of God.
M&M’s were introduced in 1941 and now are available in over 100 countries. Most, if not all of us, tried M&M’s for the first time as kids. My hope is that, as you enjoy your M&M’s you will allow them to serve as a reminder of the Mighty and Marvelous Truths the Bible has for us. I am reminded of the slogan and commercials for this tiny little burst of chocolate – “M&M’s they melt in your mouth not in your hand.” Allow them to dissolve in your mouth as you take in the Word of God and let these Mighty & Marvelous truths melt in your mouth, dissolve in your mind and rest in your heart. Hold on to them and we will eat them together as we use them as a visual aid or illustrated teaching and allow the Word of God to sink into us or melt in us.
Our scripture reference is found in 2 Corinthians 5:14-21 (AMP)
For the love of Christ controls and urges and impels us, because we are of the opinion and conviction that [if] One died for all, then all died; And He died for all, so that all those who live might live no longer to and for themselves, but to and for Him Who died and was raised again for their sake. Consequently, from now on we estimate and regard no one from a [purely] human point of view [in terms of natural standards of value]. [No] even though we once did estimate Christ from a human viewpoint and as a man, yet now [we have such knowledge of Him that] we know Him no longer [in terms of the flesh]. Therefore if any person is [engrafted] in Christ (the Messiah) he is a new creation (a new creature altogether); the old [previous moral and spiritual condition] has passed away. Behold the fresh and new has come! But all things are from God, Who through Jesus Christ reconciled us to Himself [received us into favor, brought us into harmony with Himself] and gave to us the ministry of reconciliation [that by word and deed we might aim to bring others into harmony with Him]. It was God [personally present] in Christ, reconciling and restoring the world to favor with Himself, not counting up and holding against [men] their trespasses [but cancelling them], and committing to us the message of reconciliation (of the restoration to favor). So we are Christ’s ambassadors, God making His appeal as it were through us. We [as Christ’s personal representatives] beg you for His sake to lay hold of the divine favor [now offered you] and be reconciled to God. For our sake He made Christ [virtually] to be sin who knew no sin, so that in and through Him we might become [endued with, viewed as being in, and examples of] the righteousness of God [what we ought to be, approved and acceptable and in right relationship with Him, by His goodness].
Here Paul was writing to the church in Corinth trying to encourage them, help them understand or realize the fullness of the finished work of Jesus. He wanted them to get revelation of God’s great love for them. How God loved them even before they knew who He was. That god loved them in spite of anything they had done. God sent His only son to die for all men so that all who live might not just live for themselves but rather live for Him who died and was raised again for their sake. God reconciled all men to Himself through the finished work of the cross. God’s motivation was love.
In the Greek, the word controls means constrains – to hold together then to press on or urge or impel on or excite.
Merriam Webster defines motive as a reason for doing something, especially one that is hidden or not obvious; something (as a need or desire) that causes a person to act. In the above scripture – the slave’s motive changes from has to wants to.
When we really get this mighty and marvelous truth in our mind, allow it to penetrate our heart and spirit – It does its own work. Knowing that the very God who created heaven and earth – loved me so much that He sent His only Son to take my place, – to pay for my sins, which cost Him His life. And God’s only motivation for doing this was His love for man, for me and for you. The revelation of this truth serves to paint a new picture in my mind of God. God is love. God is not waiting for you and me to do something wrong so He can punish us. My friend God’s only motivation is love.
I invite you to join me as I place an M&M and in my mouth. As I do so, I focus on this mighty and marvelous truth. We have a new motive in life and that motive is love. As the chocolate melts in our mouth, allow this truth to melt your heart and erase any selfish mindset you may have.
Exodus 21:2-6 (NASB) if you buy a Hebrew slave, he shall serve for six years; but on the seventh he shall go out as a free man without payment. “If he comes alone, he shall go out alone; if he is the husband of a wife, then his wife shall go out with him. “If his master gives him a wife, and she bears him sons or daughters, the wife and her children shall belong to her master, and he shall go out alone. But, if the slave plainly says, ‘I love my master, my wife and my children; I will not go out as a free man,’ then his master shall bring him to God, and then he shall bring him to the door or the doorpost. And his master shall pierce his ear with an awl; and he shall serve him permanently.
My friend love will make you do things differently, think differently, act differently and feel differently about everyone and everything – your master, your spouse, your children, your neighbor, your job, literally everything. The slave was no longer interested in being free. He had revelation as to how good things were for him. He had a Master who had shown him love, provided for him, taken care of his needs, given him more than he could have ever had out on his own. He had the perfect master. The slave didn’t want to leave his master’s presence, his care, his provision. He wanted to serve him for the rest of his life and not only serve him but serve him for free – forever!
Jesus, who knew NO SIN, became sin for us (you, me, the whole world) so that we don’t have to be slaves to sin. We no longer have to be held captive by sin, selfishness, lust, addiction, excessive self-indulgence, or even self glorification. We are no longer controlled by the devil, our circumstances, our situations, our sinful nature or our mistakes. We have a new MASTER and His name is Jesus!
John 8: 36 (AMP) tells us – “if the Son liberates you [makes you free men], then you are really and unquestionably free.”
We are free but our greatest desire as believers is to serve our new Master. King Jesus!!!
Now that calls for more than just one M&M, right? Let’s take 4 or 5 more morsels now because this mighty and marvelous truth is just too sweet to only have one. As you allow the morsels to melt in your mouth, think of how smoothly they dissolve, how rich the flavor of the chocolate is. My friend God is rich in His mercy and His love towards you. His grace is new every morning and nothing, absolutely nothing, can separate you from the love of God.
No longer are we controlled by self-ambition, selfishness, circumstances, or situations, RATHER, we are CONTROLLED BY THE LOVE OF GOD. It’s very humbling to realize that love controls those things in us we weren’t able to keep under control. God is love, therefore; we are love. We are controlled, compelled and constrained by God’s unbelievable, unshakeable, incredible love.
I am moved by the love of my new MASTER and I want to serve Him. Not in an effort to pay Him back for what he’s done for me; oh no, simply because I love Him and can’t help myself.
Corinthians 5:16-17 (AMP) Consequently, from now on we estimate and regard no one from a [purely] human point of view [in terms of natural standards of value]. [No] even though we once did estimate Christ from a human viewpoint and as a man, yet now [we have such knowledge of Him that] we know Him no longer [in terms of the flesh]. Therefore if any person is [ingrafted] in Christ (the Messiah) he is a new creation (a new creature altogether); the old [previous moral and spiritual condition] has passed away. Behold the fresh and new has come!
We are a new creation or new man, we have a new motive which is love, and we have a new Master just how much better can this get?
Well get ready it just keeps getting better and better. We have a new way to measure others, their actions, their attitudes, etc. This scripture tells us that we aren’t to regard anyone from just a human point of view. God doesn’t look for flaws in our character, our actions or our attitudes. God gently perfects any area in us that we allow Him to. Knowing our God is measuring us or judging us through Jesus. The blood of Jesus covers any flaws, weaknesses or sinful ways we have.
I continue to ask God to complete that which He has begun in me regarding this topic. You know how there are some people out there that are very difficult to like much less love. Well, when I’ve had a difficult time loving someone that seems to be determined to make life as difficult for me as possible, I’ve found that, if I ask God to show me something about them that will cause me to love them so I can walk in love. He FAITHFULLY does exactly that. He spreads love for them in my heart; it’s not something I have to make up or fake. It’s all Him and none of me. We aren’t to regard anyone from just a human point of view. Without Jesus this would be impossible.
We aren’t to evaluate men according to their racial or social background. We aren’t to evaluate them by what they’ve done, who they know or don’t know, how much money they have in the bank or what kind of car they drive. Jesus died for all – the rebellious teenager, the prostitute, the drug addict, the alcoholic, that woman in prison, that homeless wonderer in your town and even ME. He died for “ALL”.
Have another handful of M&M’s and think on this. Jesus, the son of God, was born in Bethlehem, He was raised in Nazareth. He walked in Galilee. He began His ministry in Cana. He died on an old rugged cross where all sin of mankind was placed on Him. He was buried in the borrowed tomb of Joseph. Three (3) days later, He arose from the dead. He ascended to heaven.
This mighty and marvelous truth is too good to be true, isn’t it? Yet, IT IS TRUE. That’s why they call it the gospel. It’s too good to be true.
Are you getting as excited about these truths as I am? I get giddy and it’s not from the chocolate either. Revelation of just how good God is towards us is flat out sweet! Beautiful! Amazing!
The story doesn’t end there. Jesus is positioned at the right hand of God, where He intercedes for you and me. We now have a new identity in Christ.
2 Corinthians 5:18 – 19(AMP) But all things are from God, Who through Jesus Christ reconciled us to Himself [received us into favor, brought us into harmony with Himself] and gave to us the ministry of reconciliation [that by word and deed we might aim to bring others into harmony with Him]. It was God [personally present] in Christ, reconciling and restoring the world to favor with Himself, not counting up and holding against [men] their trespasses [but cancelling them], and committing to us the message of reconciliation (of the restoration to favor). So we are Christ’s ambassadors, God making His appeal as it were through us. We [as Christ’s personal representatives] beg you for His sake to lay hold of the divine favor [now offered you] and be reconciled to God. For our sake He made Christ [virtually] to be sin who knew no sin, so that in and through Him we might become [endued with, viewed as being in, and examples of] the righteousness of God [what we ought to be, approved and acceptable and in right relationship with Him, by His goodness].
We are a new creation, with a new motive, a new Master, a new way to measure others, a new ministry with a new message and a new mandate.
Our new Ministry is – We are ambassadors for Christ. An ambassador is an accredited diplomat sent by a country as its official representative to a foreign country. We represent our Master. We speak for our Master – The King of Kings and Lord of Lords. We have a new message and it is the message of reconciliation.
We have a new mandate – to get this mighty and marvelous truth out to the whole world.
What truth? What the apostle Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 15:1-4 (AMP)
AND NOW let me remind you [since it seems to have escaped you], brethren, of the Gospel (the glad tidings of salvation) which I proclaimed to you, which you welcomed and accepted and upon which your faith rests, And by which you are saved, if you hold fast and keep firmly what I preached to you, unless you believed at first without effect and all for nothing. For I passed on to you first of all what I also had received, that Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One) died for our sins in accordance with [what] the Scriptures [foretold], That He was buried, that He arose on the third day as the Scriptures foretold.
The M&M’s (Mighty and Marvelous) truths in the Word are what we are to share with the whole world.
So…..Share your M&M’s with someone today.