All Is Discovered



I remember hearing a story about Sir Arthur Conan Doyle a few years ago. While attending a dinner party the subject charged to the skeletons that people have hidden in their closets. To prove his point that even the most pious men had things hidden that they wished never to be discovered Sir Arthur asked each of the guests to give him the name of some they believed to be pious and upright in character, and to these men, well thought of in London Society, were sent a telegram with only the following: "All is discovered; flee at once"


For many, the discovery of the same anonymous note would bring to mind the memories of a certain action (or a few of them) and fill us with dread. For, we believe, if someone knew those things about me then they would no longer love me. And that, even if you don't quite understand how, is truly the meaning of Christmas.


In the coming of Christ, we are forced face-to-face with the amazing and abundant love of God. But within that love we must wrestle with more than the fact that Jesus came, we must wrestle with the fact that He had to come. He had to come because He knew, as Conan Doyle only assumed, that each of us has those moments of shame and the skeletons in the closet. God knew that none of us would be able to ever pull ourselves up by the bootstraps. The Christmas story is one that declares boldly that truly "All is discovered."


Allow yourself to let this sink in. There truly isn't anything about you, your thought, actions, motives, deepest secrets, or darkest actions that are not fully discovered. Perhaps you, as I did growing up in Sunday School, believe that God only finds out something when you confess. And He has to forgive you, but He may be a little reluctant to do so. Or perhaps you have believed the hellish old lie that along with your running to God you need to perform some act of penance in order for forgiveness to be given and love to flow forth. But that is not the story that we see played out in the life lived by that babe in the manger, the torturous death that He willingly died, the gospel He proclaimed, or the Kingdom He came to bring.


On the very first page of the New Testament, we see a promise and prophesy given to Mary about the Son she would bear, 'for He will save His people from their sins.' (Matt. 1:21b) In this promise hinges the gospel itself. For this verse points to the very reason of His coming. He came because He had a people that belonged to Him. He came because these people were marred and marked by sin that they could never free themselves from. He came because He would, and He alone could, free these people from their sins. Every single one of His people, from every single one of their sins.


Jesus was not caught off-guard by how sinful his people were, He was not surprised by what you did last week. He is not running around Heaven looking for the gift receipt in order to exchange you for that person you stalk on social media and who's life you covet more than you even admit to yourself. He is not hoping that you will finally hold to the resolutions that you'll make here in 3 weeks and forget about in 5.


In another prophesy given about Jesus we read that "Out of the anguish of His soul He shall see and be satisfied." (Is. 53:11a) This comes right after the well-known portion of Isaiah that tells us that Jesus would carry our griefs and sorrow, be stricken, smitten by God, pierced, crushed, chastised, wounded, oppressed, afflicted, slaughtered, oppressed, and judged. (Is. 53:4-9) And yet in verse 11, it says that Jesus would see all of this honestly, He would see what my sin, and yours, would cost, and knowing that He would willingly pay that dept He was satisfied.


So this holiday season I would recommend to listen to those words of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Yet perhaps not in the way in which he had intended for them to be heard. For truly all is discovered under the all-seeing gaze of Christ. So flee at once to the only one who knows fully what has been discovered and yet went to hell and back so that after fleeing to His arms of redemptive grace you would never need flee from them.