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October 22, 2009 / beidson

Tasting Tomorrow: Do You Have a Palate for the Powers to Come?

You’ve heard people talk about “tomorrow” in visionary terms, like “I can just see it.”  But have you ever heard anyone say they cantongue feel it on their tongues?  Maybe the future is so bright you have to wear shades, but does it taste so good you that you salivate?

The author of Hebrews speaks of those who “taste” better things to come, but have no appetite for them.  He says, “It is impossible to restore again to repentance those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, and have shared in the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the age to come, if they then fall away, since they are crucifying once again the Son of God to their own harm and holding him up to contempt” (Hebrews 6:4-6).  What is the problem here?  That those who hunger for greater things reject the greatest thing, namely, the knowledge of Christ.  They have tasted God’s grace and spit it out–what hope do they have of anything better?

But how do you taste the “powers of the age to come”?  It would seem that this flavor is found among the people of God, which is the Bride of Christ, the Church, and specifically, local churches.  If after experiencing the transforming grace of God working in and through the lives of believers a person still rejects Christ, they have no other hope; it’s not like they can crucify Jesus again.  Herein lies the warning for believers: if we turn away from Christ, there is no further hope, so do not turn away.

Our palates must be pleased with the powers of the age to come.  So many of us long for better things and grow weary of battling so many of the things that we deal with daily.  But if we fail to recognize the goodness of God to us in our churches today, we fail to understand the nature of the days to come, and thus we have misguided taste buds.  The Church is displaying the manifold wisdom of God to the cosmos–this is his eternal plan, the mystery now revealed.  The Church is a resurrected body of saints rushing toward a final day of suffering under sin’s awful dominion, a day on which we will look down at the head of our enemy as he squirms beneath our Warrior-King’s feet.  But this is not just a future event.  Even now his foot is pressing down, and the gates of hell cannot overcome him.

Don’t miss this.  The powers of the age to come are on display now in local church congregations across the globe.  Men and women are turning from cherished sin toward Christ.  Families are refusing to give in to cultural pressures which would separate them.  Brave believers are dying at the hands of ruthless oppressors.  And countless numbers of people are being transferred from a kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of God’s beloved Son.  When we see this, we get a taste of the days to come, when death itself will be destroyed.  This is what we must long for.  This is what our glands should salivate over.  This is what our tongues ought to tingle for.

The power of the ages to come is working even now.  Do you like the way it tastes?

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