As I return to update my blog, I must note that it has been both sickness and lots and lots of work that have kept me from this blog. I am thankful for both. Each is a gift, though I don't always revel in each as I should. Paul was thankful, too, when he wrote, "Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!" (2 Corinthians 9:15).This gift which Paul is talking about is so great; so magnificent that Paul calls it "indescribable." Imagine Paul, the learned rabbi, the author of most of the epistles in out New Testament, who obviously had no trouble with words, being speechless. That's what he's saying here: "This gift is so great I don't have the words to describe it." What is this gift? Well in the previous verse Paul described this gift as "surpassing grace." But this doesn't help much does it?
Paul's acting like that annoying grandfather who picks up a package and begins by trying to pull off the tape without tearing anything. "I'm trying to save the paper," he says. C'mon, Paul, we can't wait to get at this gift which is so great. What is it?
There are many descriptions of this gift throughout Scripture, but just one will suffice for the moment. It's found in Romans 6:23 and reads this way: "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." The gift is life - eternal life. God, who gave us physical life in the first place in His creation - has also offered us spiritual life; everlastingly. It is offered, available, and irrevocable for those who believe.
A lot of words have been used to describe this gift, but we don't have enough. We don't have the eloquence to adequately describe this gift of eternal life and peace with God. Thankfully, we don't have to be tested on our eloquence. We don't have to be able to fully describe the gift to receive it.
A Different Kind of Gift
On a totally different level, I cannot pass up the opportunity to share this other gift with you. For those of you with iPods or other MP3 players, you might like to try the link to Reformed Theological Seminary's FREE podcasts of hundreds of seminary lectures. Entire courses can be found here and listened to at your own pace. There is no easy link, of course. You can access these two ways. If you have an iTunes account (easy to get; go to iTunes.com), go to that page and click on iTunesU. This gives you a listing of several universities and grad schools, including RTS. You can also go directly to the RTS website and follow the links to iTunesU and RTS lectures. I have downloaded literally hundreds of these free lectures. Enjoy. Let me know what you think!