The Mystery of the Ages
by Judy Webb
The mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations but is now disclosed to the Lord’s people. To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. (Colossians 1:26-27)
I love to read good mysteries. Gifted writers engage their readers in the story by weaving an exciting plot, creating believable characters who then find their way into the reader's heart. We keep reading because we need to know how the mystery ends. We cheer for the good guy and rejoice that the villain got his due. Not unlike the way in which I read some of our Bible Stories.
In the Biblical sense, a mystery is not a riddle to be solved, but a truth to discover and share. It is discovered by revelation, not by instinct. It is revealed by daily reading studying God’s Word, and by the Holy Spirit in us.
Paul was writing this text from prison, where he was suffering for the church, the people of God. “I want you to know how glad I am that it is me sitting here in this jail and not you. There is a lot of suffering to be entered into in this world—the kind of suffering Christ takes on. I welcome the chance to take my share in the church’s part of that suffering.” (Colossians 1:24 MSG)
The Gospel, the Good News, had to be proclaimed because it was the revealing of a mystery long hidden, until Jesus. Though in past ages God’s grace had focused on the nation of Israel, he also intended to lavish his grace on Gentiles. The mystery was that Christ indwells both Jews and Gentiles who believe the gospel. The indwelling Christ lives through believers, and this produces a radical change in their character and behavior.
I imagine many who read this today can testify to this truth: Jesus changes everything! No mystery, just truth.
The Good News is for all, Jew and Gentile. This is no longer a mystery to be solved, but a truth to live by. So let us go out and share this good news with all who will listen. It is obvious the world needs us to do this.