You may have noticed a new art work of stained glass in the city of John Day. Recently, a window on the church building at 300 West Main Street received a second stained glass addition.
Historically, stained glass windows were more than a work of art. Stained-glass windows were a way to teach people about the relationship between the Creator and His creation. Once techniques were developed to stain glass, early artisans joined the glass pieces with strips of lead. Today, the technique is very similar.
As with any expression of art, there is a meaning behind this new stained glass window. In fact, there are three themes incorporated into this new window.
First, there is a skull that represents death and the curse of sin. No person on this earth will be able to escape death. There is no escape from death. “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment...” (Hebrews 9:27) This is very bleak and hopeless. How can we ever to find a solution? The answer is not with man, but with God.
Secondly, there is a profuse amount of blood. This blood is flowing from empty nail holes and a slit where the heart of Jesus was. This sacrificial blood of Jesus is the full payment for the curse of sin. It is the blood of Jesus that completely washes away past sins, present sins, and future sins. “In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace...” (Ephesians 1:7)
The Creator wants a genuine relationship with you through the blood of Jesus. Nothing can wipe away your sins except for the blood of Jesus. “Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life...” (Romans 5:9-10)
Third, there is a star arising from behind the cross. This star is a guiding light of God’s sure word of promise in a dark and evil world. “We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your heart.” (2Peter l:19)
God wants this day star to arise in your heart and bring you into a genuine relationship with Jesus. To know or see the star is not enough. Jesus wants faith to arise in your heart. This genuine relationship with God begins by a second birth. “Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee. Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” (John 3:3)
Just like in history, the stained glass windows of First Baptist Church reveal God’s communication to men, women and children. What you do with this revelation could change your life. Be open to the reality that your Creator is trying to reach you and you may just find out how good God is!!!!
On a final note, a very special “Thank You” goes out to Barbara Williams, Ted Williams and Hillary Stokes. These folks were instrumental in the creation of this stained glass window. With their help, the city of John Day has received another landmark pointing people to Jesus!
Ray Isenberger is the pastor of First Baptist Church in John Day.