Saturday, February 3, 2007

A Jewel In The Crown

I've become fascinated with the faith we call Christianity -- and with it's original name. For it was not until years (possibly decades) after the death and resurrection of Jesus the Messiah that "Christian" became a popular title (Acts 11:26) -- and that was hundreds of miles away in Antioch.

Originally, this faith movement was simply called "The Way" (Acts 9:2; 16:17; 18:25; 19:9, 23; 24:14, 22). This was likely because Jesus himself said, "I am the way..." (John 14:6). It has been tremendously helpful for me as a pastor recently to see my life, and the lives of my flock, as a PATH, a journey. It is the teaching (doctrine) of the Christian faith that motivates and sustains us on this journey. It is a hard journey, a long journey. Frought with perils. Yet "the LORD of hosts will protect the flock of his people; for like the jewels of a crown they shall shine on his land" (Zech. 9:15-16, ESV).

This is the Everlasting Way: with the LORD circling overhead, and the promise that if I follow Christ with zeal, He will transform me into one of his Crown Jewels.