“When Paul writes to Christians in the city of Corinth in about the middle of the first century, he describes Jesus as the king with all of God’s sovereignty mediated through Him: ‘For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death’ (1 Cor. 15:25-26).
Death will die. This, of course, picks up exactly what happened in Genesis 1, 2, and 3. Over against this massive rebellion that tried to de-god God, a rebellion that brought only death and decay, stands Jesus Christ. King Jesus has already beaten death, and He continues as God’s own king in David’s line.
Yet though He is a man in David’s line, He is the one who is called ‘Mighty God, Everlasting Father’ (Isa. 9:6). And He will reign until He has destroyed the last enemy: death itself. This is why the church stands up and sings, again and again, ‘Hail, King Jesus.’
We need a king-one who is perfectly righteous, who cannot be corrupted, who is entirely good, in whom there is never any taint of evil. He powerfully saves and transforms His people, who come to Him and gladly acknowledge His Lordship.
Hail, King Jesus.”
–D.A. Carson, The God Who is There: Finding Your Place in God’s Story (Grand Rapids: Baker, 2011), 79.
Dilemma wretched: how shall holiness
Of brilliant light unshaded, tolerate
Rebellion’s fetid slime, and not abate
In its own glory, compromised at best?
Dilemma wretched: how can truth attest
That God is love, and not be shamed by hate
And wills enslaved and bitter death – the freight
Of curse deserved, the human rebels’ mess?
The Cross! The Cross! The sacred meeting-place
Where, knowing neither compromise nor loss,
God’s love and holiness in shattering grace
The great dilemma slays! The Cross! The Cross!
The holy, loving God whose dear Son dies
By this is just – and one who justifies.
–D.A. Carson, Holy Sonnets of the Twentieth Century (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1994), 101. As quoted in D.A. Carson, The God Who is There (Baker, 2011), 181.
“Do you want to know what God looks like? Look at Jesus. ‘No one has ever seen God,’ and God in all of His transcendent splendor we still cannot see until the last day. But the Word became flesh; God became a human being with the name of Jesus; and we can see Him.
That is why Jesus later says to one of His own disciples, ‘Don’t you know Me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen Me has seen the Father’ (John 14:9).
Do you want to know what the character of God is like? Study Jesus. Do you want to know what the holiness of God is like? Study Jesus. Do you want to know what the wrath of God is like? Study Jesus.
Do you want to know what the forgiveness of God is like? Study Jesus. Do you want to know what the glory of God is like? Study Jesus all the way to that wretched cross. Study Jesus.”
–D.A. Carson, The God Who is There (Grand Rapids: Baker, 2010), 113.