The Comforting Hand

Norbert Lieth

The Apostle Paul writes: “Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and God of all comfort” (2 Cor 1:3). The overall theme of our Easter Conference this year is “Infinite Consolation.” The various speakers and singing groups aim to draw us to the consolation that comes from eternity with Him.

We read the following about John being confronted by the glory of Jesus: “And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last; I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death” (Rev 1:17-18). What unimagined comfort there is in those words! Death and fear have been overcome by Him. Jesus has the ultimate power, not the devil (Heb 2:14). 

The Lord placed His hand on John and lifted him up again. It was the hand that had been pierced on the cross (Psalm 22:16), and with which He also rose from the dead (Luke 24:39). The hand which, when seen by the disciple Thomas, made him cry out: “My LORD and my God” (John 20:28). The hand that had blessed the disciples before the Lord’s ascension into heaven (Luke 24:50-51). For every believer, it is the hand of consolation and perpetual uplifting, the hand indicating the hope toward resurrection. And this saving hand of Jesus will welcome everyone to eternity who has confidently clasped it in faith. About this hand, Jesus said: “I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand” (John 10:28).

Jesus is the first, standing above all; and He is the last, to be there when all earthly things have passed away. To say it with Job: “For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth; and though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God” (Job 19:25-26). Jesus lives from eternity to eternity, and He has said, “because I live, ye shall live also” (John 14:19b).

There is no greater consolation for suffering Christians, no hope more far-reaching than the fact that Jesus will return to take those who are His to where He is. All who put their hope in Him by faith will not be put to shame. The book of Revelation opens the curtain a little to our glorious future. There we see Jesus as King, to whom the story of salvation belongs. We see God on His throne of glory; we see a new Jerusalem, a new heaven and a new earth. We see the resurrected, and how those who once suffered are eternally comforted. Let us stay focused on this hope as we await the Lord Jesus!

“Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God, even our Father, which hath loved us, and hath given us everlasting consolation and good hope through grace, comfort your hearts, and stablish you in every good word and work” (2 Thess 2:16-17). United in God’s consolation, we wish you a blessed Easter.

Midnight Call - 03/2024

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