In Jesus

Pastor Daron CrossLife Blog

It’s so easy to skip over, and understandably so. It’s small. And small is most often noticed only when it is missing or malfunctioning. A double “A” battery, a contact lens, a key, a computer chip, and of course the word “in.” 

We skip this important word because it seems so static, so boring, and it is almost always positioned next to bigger, classier words. Like the word “Jesus.” Now there’s a word we notice. Jesus is an awesome word. He, after all, is the Savior of the world.

I came across our little friend, “in,” recently as I prepared for a Bible study. It struck me how often I have read and reread and rereread this section of Scripture and not once have I stopped to pay homage to “in.” 

And that’s major easy to do when you’re reading the book of Revelation. Wow! There are colors and numbers and horses and dragons and temples and angels to gawk at in Revelation – so who has time to stop and contemplate the word “in?” I did.  And now you do. Here’s the sentence in the first chapter, verse nine:

“I, John, your brother and companion in the suffering and kingdom and patient endurance that are ours in Jesus, was on the island of Patmos …” from where John recorded the visions that Christ gave him forming the basis of the book of Revelation. What I didn’t tell you before is that this sentence has two “ins” and so it comes with a special bonus. 

Look at the first one. John, along with other Christians at this time, is “in” suffering. This was a time of Christian persecution and it had found its mark on the apostle John. Going about his business as ordered by Jesus, John had been unjustly imprisoned and exiled to the island of Patmos. He was suffering.

Now look at the second one. John, along with other Christians at this time, finds his suffering, his kingdom status, and his patient endurance “in” Jesus. 

“In” is not the same as “on” or “around” or “by.” No. “In” means totally enveloped, everything immersed, nothing left sticking out, all the way surrounded.

So picture for a moment a target, like one of those with the red bullseye on it. That bullseye is John, or you, or any believer. 

Then the yellow ring that encircles the bullseye is any and all suffering in John’s life, or your life, or any believer’s life. Every ounce of it encompasses and effects you. Your suffering is not just intermittent inconvenience that checks in once in a while; it is a constant headache kind of pain and tension that doesn’t go away. You are “in” it. But …

All the way around your suffering that encircles you is yet another ring, a blue ring that totally envelopes and encompasses and embraces both the yellow ring and the red bullseye. This blue ring is Jesus. 

Not a single ounce of your suffering finds its way outside of Jesus. Not a single breath of air you breathe comes from some place outside of Jesus, and not a singe sigh or cry you exhale lands outside of Jesus. 

You and your suffering are both “in Jesus!” All of you and all of your life and all of your suffering and all of your salvation are completely in Jesus.

PRAYER: Oh Jesus, my Alpha and Omega, keep me forever in you by faith. When my suffering in this life pressures me, contain my sorrow and stress with your ever present love. Be my shield and my strength. I pray in your name because I am in you. Amen.

EVANGELISM ACTION: Google a picture of a target. Show it to a friend who needs Jesus and explain this blog to them.