If God’s heart all along has been to shine a light to all nations, and if the intentions from that heart are for all people to fully experience the weight of His glory and His lavished intimacy (inasmuch as those are possible while we’re still earthbound), then how does He plan on achieving that?
As we plumb the depths here, it’s important to understand that there’s not one Scripture passage that will map out God’s strategy for making His glory and intimacy shine as a light to all nations. We all have our go-to passages, and God uses them all to communicate the HOW (the strategy) behind the WHAT (shining His light to everyone). And for me, Scripture becomes absolutely breath-taking when the words housed within those sixty-six books provide a variety of glimpses into the same diamond.
Two such glimpses are penned by the Apostle Paul, written with more truth packed inside of them than we might ever discover in a lifetime, and in this case a message that will help us see what God is doing to shine His light.
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God — not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s HANDIWORK, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities — his eternal power and divine nature — have been clearly seen, being understood from WHAT HAS BEEN MADE, so that people are without excuse.
The Greek word for “handiwork” (Ephesians 2:10) is the word POIEMA, and it’s the same word used for “what has been made” (Romans 1:20). The Greek word POIEMA is translated POEM, and apparently that’s exactly what God is writing to the world.
Poems are such an interesting combination of words. It’s not like we simply read a poem and take it at face value. Sometimes there’s an obvious rhyming scheme, and other times there’s no rhyme at all.
The Romans passage indicates that the poem of God is being written through His creation – through what has been made. This takes away any of our excuses about the existence of God, because all people can read His poem through creation.
And the Ephesians passage is equally intriguing, if not more so. Paul says that we are God’s poem. Just read it again, in context, but with an emphasis on that word poiema:
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God — not by works, so that no one can boast. For you are the poem of God, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
You are the poem of God.
How is God making Himself known to the world? How is the Great and Awesome Invisible Creator somehow seen by people who are searching for Him? He’s doing it through His creation (Romans 1:20), and He’s doing it through those who have been saved by His grace (Ephesians 2:10). Have you ever considered this to be remotely true about yourself, and that He’s doing it all through the GOOD THINGS you offer to the world – good things that He’s planned for you uniquely to do before you were even born?
PEOPLE WHO HAVE BEEN SAVED BY THE GRACE OF GOD HAVE BECOME THE POEM OF GOD.
And make no mistake… the world is reading.