Sunday, April 11, 2021...Georgina Della (Smith) Roth has been in a state the professionals call "actively passing" for three or four days. Around 1:30 AM, she completes the process. At 7:00 AM, my brother, the oldest of my surviving siblings and the one ...

Truth is...

Live On, Mom


Sunday, April 11, 2021...Georgina Della (Smith) Roth has been in a state the professionals call "actively passing" for three or four days. Around 1:30 AM, she completes the process.

At 7:00 AM, my brother, the oldest of my surviving siblings and the one who had been daily providing care to Mom before the medical incident that put her in a nursing home by way of the emergency brother calls me and says "This is the call."

"This is it," I respond.

"Guess who woke up in heaven this morning?"

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Truth is...Mom had spent six years and 9 months as a widow, and I doubt she truly enjoyed a single minute of it. Yes, she was sometimes distracted by happy events and visits from children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren, but there was always a longing to go Home. Enjoy your sweet victory, beloved saint!

Psalm 73:23-26

Yet I am always with you;

    you hold me by my right hand.

You guide me with your counsel,

    and afterward you will take me into glory.

Whom have I in heaven but you?

    And earth has nothing I desire besides you.

My flesh and my heart may fail,

    but God is the strength of my heart

    and my portion forever.


The "What" of Jesus


Per the Nicene Creed:

He became incarnate from the virgin, Mary, and was made man

Per the Holy Bible:

All right then, the Lord himself will give you the sign. Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son and will call him Immanuel (which means ‘God is with us’).

Isaiah 7:14 (NLT)

The angel replied, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the baby to be born will be holy, and he will be called the Son of God. What’s more, your relative Elizabeth has become pregnant in her old age! People used to say she was barren, but she has conceived a son and is now in her sixth month. For the word of God will never fail.”

Mary responded, “I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.” And then the angel left her.

A few days later Mary hurried to the hill country of Judea, to the town where Zechariah lived. She entered the house and greeted Elizabeth. At the sound of Mary’s greeting, Elizabeth’s child leaped within her, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.

Elizabeth gave a glad cry and exclaimed to Mary, “God has blessed you above all women, and your child is blessed. Why am I so honored, that the mother of my Lord should visit me? When I heard your greeting, the baby in my womb jumped for joy. You are blessed because you believed that the Lord would do what he said.”

Mary responded, “Oh, how my soul praises the Lord."

Luke 1:35-46

So the Word became human and made his home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen his glory, the glory of the Father’s one and only Son.
John 1:14

Though he was God, he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to. Instead, he gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being.

When he appeared in human form, he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross.
Philippians 2:6-8

Because God’s children are human beings—made of flesh and blood—the Son also became flesh and blood. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the devil, who had the power of death. Only in this way could he set free all who have lived their lives as slaves to the fear of dying.

We also know that the Son did not come to help angels; he came to help the descendants of Abraham. Therefore, it was necessary for him to be made in every respect like us, his brothers and sisters, so that he could be our merciful and faithful High Priest before God. Then he could offer a sacrifice that would take away the sins of the people.
Hebrews 2:14-17

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Just so we don't turn "incarnate" into some mystical, purely-religious term, let's remind ourselves that it has a universally understood definition: "embodied in flesh; given a bodily, especially a human, form."

Truth is...While occupying Planet Earth, Jesus was not a visible spirit, magically hovering six inches off the ground and never quite "one of us." When people refer to Jesus as "God in the flesh," that is exactly what they mean. Jesus had a human body, just like you and me.


The "How" of Jesus


Per the Nicene Creed:

By the power of the Holy Spirit

Per the Holy Bible

The angel replied, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the baby to be born will be holy, and he will be called the Son of God."

Luke 1:35 NLT

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This clause of the creed is simply explaining how God the Son took on human form. Well, explaining is probably too strong a word to use. It's more like giving credit without really understanding any behind-the-scenes making of the sausage. For God the Son to take on flesh, it took some kind of special power, and that power was administered through God the Spirit.

Truth is...I don't understand it, but I don't really expect to be able to understand everything about God.


The "From Where" of Jesus


Per the Nicene Creed:

He came down from heaven

Per the Holy Bible

No one has ever gone to heaven and returned. But the Son of Man has come down from heaven.

John 3:13 NLT

He has come from above and is greater than anyone else. We are of the earth, and we speak of earthly things, but he has come from heaven and is greater than anyone else.

John 3:31

After everyone was full, Jesus told his disciples, “Now gather the leftovers, so that nothing is wasted.” So they picked up the pieces and filled twelve baskets with scraps left by the people who had eaten from the five barley loaves.

When the people saw him do this miraculous sign, they exclaimed, “Surely, he is the Prophet we have been expecting!” When Jesus saw that they were ready to force him to be their king, he slipped away into the hills by himself.

That evening Jesus’ disciples went down to the shore to wait for him. But as darkness fell and Jesus still hadn’t come back, they got into the boat and headed across the lake toward Capernaum. Soon a gale swept down upon them, and the sea grew very rough. They had rowed three or four miles when suddenly they saw Jesus walking on the water toward the boat. They were terrified, but he called out to them, “Don’t be afraid. I am here!” Then they were eager to let him in the boat, and immediately they arrived at their destination!

The next day the crowd that had stayed on the far shore saw that the disciples had taken the only boat, and they realized Jesus had not gone with them. Several boats from Tiberias landed near the place where the Lord had blessed the bread and the people had eaten. So when the crowd saw that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they got into the boats and went across to Capernaum to look for him. They found him on the other side of the lake and asked, “Rabbi, when did you get here?”

Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, you want to be with me because I fed you, not because you understood the miraculous signs. But don’t be so concerned about perishable things like food. Spend your energy seeking the eternal life that the Son of Man can give you. For God the Father has given me the seal of his approval.”

They replied, “We want to perform God’s works, too. What should we do?”

Jesus told them, “This is the only work God wants from you: Believe in the one he has sent.”

They answered, “Show us a miraculous sign if you want us to believe in you. What can you do? After all, our ancestors ate manna while they journeyed through the wilderness! The Scriptures say, ‘Moses gave them bread from heaven to eat.’”

Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, Moses didn’t give you bread from heaven. My Father did. And now he offers you the true bread from heaven. The true bread of God is the one who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”

“Sir,” they said, “give us that bread every day.”

Jesus replied, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry again. Whoever believes in me will never be thirsty. But you haven’t believed in me even though you have seen me. However, those the Father has given me will come to me, and I will never reject them. For I have come down from heaven to do the will of God who sent me, not to do my own will.

John 6:12-38

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Truth is...the idea of coming "down" from or going "up" to heaven may be a bow to our limited, human understanding, so let's not get all excited about getting in a rocket and blasting out into space looking for a physical place called heaven. The point being made is that Jesus existed in a purely spiritual "form" before being birthed on Earth having taken on the form of a human being. (Philippians 2:7)


The "Why" of Jesus


Per the Nicene Creed:

For us and for our salvation

Per the Holy Bible

I have seen your salvation.

Luke 2:30 NLT

For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.

John 3:16

Furthermore, we have seen with our own eyes and now testify that the Father sent his Son to be the Savior of the world.

1 John 4:14

There is one God and one Mediator who can reconcile God and humanity—the man Christ Jesus. He gave his life to purchase freedom for everyone.

1 Timothy 2:5-6

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Truth is...there are plenty of people who say plenty of things as to why Jesus came to Earth. "He came to show us how to love." "He came to be an example." "He came to teach us truth." But primarily, it was the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth that made it possible to restore mankind's relationship with Father God. He saved us!


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