FROM THE PASTORS DESK
“Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift! II Corinthians 9:15
In December there will be a lot of gift giving taking place, as we sit around the Christmas tree. When it comes to gifts I sometimes think about my dad. My dad will tip his gift this way and that, shake it and attempt to describe what he thinks may be inside. There has been more than one gift in which he has accurately guessed what was inside. Anyone giving him a gift has learned to package his gift differently, so that he less likely to guess what’s inside.
According to the apostle Paul there is one gift that no one, not even my dad, can accurately describe. The Scripture passage declares that God has given mankind an indescribable gift! In the context ahead of this Scripture passage Paul speaks of one group of people showing generosity toward another group. Paul called their gift that would be given a “bountiful gift (9:5).” Within this context there is a good sprinkling of “God.” Paul has his thoughts directed upward and thus also desires both groups (the one giving and the other receiving) to also direct their thoughts toward God. Paul is turning our eyes off of ourselves and our giving and putting our eyes on “His…gift!” It is very easy for us humans to be impressed with ourselves and our wonderful gifts that we give as if we drummed up this spirit of generosity deep down inside us. Wrong. Our giving is impacted by “His gift” to us not God impacted by our giving (I John 4:19).
I still ask myself this question, “Why is His gift indescribable?” The first thing that we establish is that God’s indescribable gift is Jesus Christ (John 3:16). The Holy Scriptures have 66 books, at least thirty-six different authors, and a 1600 year window all describing Jesus. The Bible declares in II Timothy 3:16 “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness.” So the point cannot be that since Jesus is indescribable let’s not try to describe Jesus to others and lets not bother learning more about Him.
Paul has already hinted earlier at what he is trying to get at as he writes, “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sake He became poor, so that you through His poverty might become rich (II Corinthians 8:9).” The very fact that Jesus being God took on human flesh to suffer and die on the cross and rise again three days later is something that is, well, indescribable. Consider Mary, Jesus’ mother, “pondering (Luke 2)” and the magi’s response, “they fell to the ground and worshipped Him (Matthew 2).” Even Job in the Old Testament, before Jesus was born, reads, “Listen to this, O Job, stand and consider the wonders of God (Job 37:14).” We live almost 2000 years after Jesus came and we still can’t describe such an indescribable gift. “Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift.”