This is a really fresh thought and sometimes I just like getting in here and blogging about it in order to flesh it out. But here’s the thought that has just really jumped out at me as I was just studying a moment ago. I was watching a back and forth discussion between John Piper and Tim Keller (at the bottom of this blog post) and they are discussing sanctification. And in their back and forth discussion, they essentially come to this conclusion – we are motivated for sanctification by both looking backward and looking forward.
Now that’s a powerful thought. You see, I am motivated to grow in Christlikeness because I look backwards and discover what Christ did for me. That’s what we encounter when we are in the Word and we read for ourselves the accounts of Christ’s ministry. All of that is discovering what Christ did for me in the PAST. But what also is true is that the Bible promises those things that are AHEAD of me and that motivates my desire for sanctification. For instance, I am motivated by the promise that all the promises of God are yes in Christ Jesus (2 Corinthians 1:20). I am motivated by the promise that Christ came so that I might have life and have it more abundantly (John 10:10). So I both look backwards AND forwards in order to find motivation for growing in my Christian walk which is sanctification.
That really changes the way we see each day. It’s not just living out some rules from 2,000 years ago. Instead, it’s living in the reality that God is still at work in my life and there are promises still ahead of me that He longs to show me AS I AM GROWING more like Him.
Looking backward motivates our looking forward. That sounds like something that needs some more digging because that’s a really powerful thought.