What do you think your greatest need is? In times like these, it could seem like income to pay the mortgage and put food on the table. It may be that you finally start making moves towards living a healthier life or it may even be to bravely open your heart to someone in hopes that they will reciprocate the same feeling. Whatever you deem your ‘greatest need’, I have one question to pose against that need. Will it fulfill what you are lacking? A steady paycheck will pay the bills and put food on the table. Eating well and exercising will greatly increase your overall health. Spilling your guts to someone could flourish a lifelong love! Now these are good things, do not get me wrong, but will they fulfill what you are lacking? What if I told you there is one thing in the entire world that you need more than anything else you will ever need in your life, would you be interested?
When the Old Testament comes to a close, scholars believe that there were 400 years of silence from God (at least in his revelation to humanity). In this time, God’s people had one simple goal: love God with all their being and obey his commands. There were ceremonies in place for repentance of sins, structures in place to know how to deal with moral issues, and traditions to practice that would remind the people of their God. As we open the New Testament we find that finally God is revealing his next move, and it’s a big one. Jesus Christ took the lowliness of human form and entered the world. Born to a humble family, Jesus grew up as a carpenters’ son. He was trained in the Pentateuch, as was customary for a young Jewish boy and was taught all the commands of the Lord. The one who spoke into being everything that was made now walks on the ground that he formed. Truly awe-some. This Jesus was the promised Messiah that God told his people to eagerly yet patiently wait for. The only problem was that God’s people were not looking for a humble man to save them from eternal enmity with God; they were waiting for an angel dressed in fire who would wipe out their enemies and restore the garden of Eden on earth. While this is an understandable desire, they unfortunately missed the point. In their pursuit of worldly peace and freedom, they forgot their greatest need. While God’s people were praying for physical liberation, God had eternal salvation in mind.
You see creation’s greatest need has never been better standing in this world. We have never needed a better paying job, another car in the driveway, more food in the pantry, or reputation with our peers more than we have ever needed restoration with our Creator. Our greatest need as creation has always been to be reconciled back to our Creator!
*Que Big Reveal Sound*
If our greatest need in life is reconciliation with our Creator, then our greatest problem in life is enmity with God. Biblical scholar, Don Carson explains it this way,
“In sum, we find ourselves fighting the Bible’s entire story line if we do not recognize that our deepest need is to be reconciled to God.”D. A. Carson, Biblical Scholar.
Can you imagine how unfulfilling it would be to land that massive job interview and a week later be diagnosed with stage four cancer? How devastating it is that we would put all our attention in chasing fleeting things! This may be the most sad reality that we could ever live in and yet creation has been living this way since the beginning! In the same way that Adam and Eve sought equality with God over harmony with God, we so often waste our time chasing food that will never satisfy! You see Jesus came to earth for the purpose of fulfilling what no man could ever have fulfilled: just payment for the sins of created beings. Outside of Jesus’ sacrifice, every person to have been born on this earth was heading to eternal separation from God. It is only because Jesus died on a cross, was buried, and rose from the grave that creation now has a path back to their Creator! In short, CREATION’S GREATEST NEED HAS BEEN FULFILLED!
No longer do we need to worry about our physical needs because our greatest need has been fulfilled. However, this does not mean that our physical needs are unimportant – quite the opposite actually! Matthew 6 tells us,
“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your Heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the Lillies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your Heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But first seek the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.Matthew 6:25-34, ESV.
The point here is simply this, do not waste your life chasing things that will not satisfy. Our Creator took it upon himself to personally make a way for His creation to be restored back to Himself through the atonement of Jesus Christ. Of course you have needs in life and of course you will do well to take care of those needs, but do not misunderstand what you need most. Jesus walked among men with the purpose of dying for their own mistakes and they missed it. Oh that we would savor the goodness and work of our Lord Jesus Christ and humble ourselves before the Lord in gratitude. Your greatest need in life is reconciliation with God and the good news is this reconciliation has been made available to you – don’t miss it.