ALREADY BUT NOT YET

According to Merriam-Webster, a semicolon is used to separate two independent but related clauses.[1] It is used when an author could have ended the sentence but chose not to. It can symbolize when the story isn’t finished. I read online that some people who struggle with depression, addiction, suicide, or other mental issues, get a semicolon tattoo as a message of affirmation and solidarity to not give up. It is a reminder of how far they have come.[2] Just as the mark is a sign for readers to pause before continuing a sentence, participants have embraced the symbol as a reminder that their story isn’t over yet.

            This ‘already but not yet’ concept is also in the Bible. We are living in the not yet, between the cross and the crown, as a pastor recently affirmed. Just as I was writing down the phrase in my notebook moments before he said it. I had already prepped for this message and was familiar with the term from my studies, so when he started his sermon on a similar topic, it was a reminder, and I knew it was time to finish it.

            God’s story isn’t over yet; neither is ours. Christ fulfilled the promises of the OT, but we are still awaiting the completion of Jesus Christ’s return. The kingdom of God, in the OT, encompasses the past, present, and future. It is “already” present but “not yet” fully completed, both a present and future reality. Jesus’ incarnation, life, ministry, death, and resurrection inaugurated the kingdom. In some capacity, we possess kingdom blessings now. We still endure hardships on this earth, but when the final kingdom is complete, we will no longer endure those sufferings.  God’s light will dispel all darkness.[3]

            Jesus Christ has already defeated death through the resurrection. Although we are all sinners, in a broken world, we can enter Christ’s kingdom through regeneration offered to us through the grace of God (Rom. 5:15, ESV). It is a beautiful redemption story that we can all take part in by accepting Jesus as our Lord and Savior. God gives each of us a unique story and the ability to use it for His glory. Regardless of where you are on your journey, your story isn’t over yet. Don’t give up. God’s promises are yes and amen (2 Cor. 1:20).

“Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us” (Heb. 12:1).

“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world, you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).


[1] Merriam-Webster https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/semicolon

[2] The Trend Spotter https://www.thetrendspotter.net/semicolon-tattoo/

[3] Brand, C., Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s