In this Psalm below, we see how God is gracious to us and makes His face shine on us.
“May God be gracious to us and bless us and make his face shine on us—
2 so that your ways may be known on earth, your salvation among all nations.”
Where do we find this smiling face of God that shines on us?
It is found in JESUS CHRIST our lord!
2nd Corinthians 4 “6 For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.”
Nobody had seen God until Jesus Christ has revealed Him to us!
John 14 “Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father.“
Under the Old Covenant, Israel’s experience of God was based on the Law that brought blessings for obedience and curses for disobedience under the system of works-based judgment. They were cursed because they were unable to obey the Law. God kept them under the Law until Christ died and brought righteousness by faith and not our works (Galatians 3:10-25).
Finally in Christ, He revealed His true nature – – bringing GRACE upon GRACE – salvation by grace through faith and not by works – setting us free from the demands of the law. The Law was only a temporary arrangement until the truth of GRACE came!
John 1 “16 And of Christ’s fullness we have all received, and GRACE for GRACE. 17 For the law was given through Moses, but GRACE and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him.”
The ten commandments (law) were not the true revelation of God but only a veil that blinded the eyes of the people, bringing them condemnation because they could never obey the commandments. BUT when Jesus came He brought GRACE and TRUTH in the new covenant – where we trust in Jesus who died on the cross and we receive the free gift of Righteousness by His obedience alone! (2nd Corinthians 3:7-18). The old covenant brought condemnation because the ten commandments written on stone exposed their sins bringing guilt.
Romans 3 “20 Therefore no one will be declared righteous in God’s sight by the works of the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of our sin.
21 But now apart from the law the righteousness of God has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. 22 This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe.
But when we stop trusting in our own performance but ONLY trust in Jesus Christ, because He did all the work for us through His death and resurrection, then God makes us righteous, holy and blameless in Christ !!
The purpose of the ten commandments was not to save people but to lead them to the SAVIOR! The law was designed to convince unbelievers that they are sinners, but the believer looks to Christ who has forgiven us and made us the RIGHTEOUSNESS of GOD. God will never judge the believer because He made us righteous solely by Christ’s death and resurrection and not by our works!
Romans 4 “5 However, to the one who does not work but trusts God who justifies the ungodly, their faith is credited as righteousness….blessed are those whose sins are forgiven …whose sins the Lord will NEVER count against them.…God will credit righteousness—for us who believe in him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead. 25 He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification (to make us righteous).”
When we trust in our own performance, we condemn ourselves and feel distant from God and then we rely on weekly confessions that can bring temporary relief but can never take away sins. It is because sins are always exposed every week that need to be confessed and there is no permanent assurance of forgiveness – because we are still relying on our performance under the law (constantly failing, needing forgiveness).
BUT when we look at Jesus Christ’s death on the cross, we believe that our sins are already forgiven once and for all and that He made us righteous by His resurrection!
Galatians 3 ” 24 So the law was our guardian until Christ came that we might be justified by faith. 25 Now that this faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian (law).”
Now that Christ came, we are not under the law that exposes our sins but we are under GRACE that has taken away our sins forever! We are not required to keep confessing our sins under the law but to keep looking to JESUS who made us righteous forever!
We are not constantly forgiven by weekly confessions of sins but we are forgiven once and for all by grace through faith in Jesus Christ.
Therefore when we stop looking at our performance then we can see the permanent smiling face of God shining on us through Jesus with full assurance!!
We can know His great approval and blessing only when we stop looking at our own performance but look to JESUS and see what He did for us on the cross!
When Jesus came to the world, God announced that Christ is His beloved Son in whom He is well pleased.
17 And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”
Now, look at this below! The believer is ACCEPTED in the BELOVED CHRIST
Ephesians 1 NKJV
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, 4 just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, 5 having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, 6 to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us ACCEPTED in the BELOVED. 7 In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace
We have been made holy, blameless in Christ. We are fully loved in Christ! We are loved by God just as much as He loves JESUS! Can we just meditate on that! God loves us as much as He loves Jesus – and that is why He gave up His Son Jesus Christ for us to make us His children by grace!
We have received the forgiveness of sins according to the RICHES of His GRACE.
We were sinners but now by grace through faith, we are righteous IN CHRIST and made ALIVE in Christ, seated with Him in heavenly places! We are SEATED With Christ at the right hand of our FATHER where we have ACCEPTANCE, APPROVAL, FAVOR, PROTECTION and His great love showered upon us!
4 But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, 5 even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), 6 and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,
This place in Christ next to the Father is the secret place and the shadow of the Almighty where we have protection from all dangers and diseases.
He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. 2 I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.” 3 Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler and from the perilous disease.
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, we are seated with our Lord Jesus in the glorious embrace of the Father. We are in the bosom of the Father and the Son!
John 1 NKJV “The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him.”
We are IN CHRIST, in the BOSOM of the Father and our Lord JESUS being embraced in their unconditional love.
Our Father’s loving face smiles at us and shines on us in Jesus’ name!