Death and sin are on my mind. And I know that sounds depressing, but on the contrary, my heart feels light. Bear with me, now.
First, in church, Kevin Cullen (the substitute preacher) shared an anecdote from R.C. Sproul. A common misconception is that before Christ, we are sick, lying on the stretcher, and Jesus has a magic pill. We receive that pill and poof! We’re healed. But that’s not biblical truth. In reality, we’re dead. We’re lying there all lifeless and cold, he pries our jaws apart, pops in that pill and we come alive. “But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved” Ephesians 2:4-5. Oh how true. We are dead without him. It is a grave situation without Christ.
And the wise Oswald Chambers sparked my second thought. In essence, sin needs to die. I know sin is a serious thing, but me in my humanness can minimize it. I forget how awful it is, how God HATES it. Chambers says: “Co-crucifixion. Have I made this decision about sin–that it must be killed right out in me? It takes a long time to come to a moral decision about sin, but it is the great moment in my life when I do decide that just as Jesus Christ died for the sin of the world, so sin must die out in me, not be curbed or suppressed or counteracted, but crucified.”
I’m guilty of that…of sweeping it away, curbing it, suppressing it….how many times have I judged someone and quickly reprimanded myself? “No, Lisbeth, stop thinking about people that way.” And I move on in the good fight with no weapons, unequipped to slay the sinful thoughts the next time they pop up again. Which they do. But Chambers calls us to eventually be souls where all that is left in our flesh and blood is the life of Christ. There’s nothing else but Him! How that thrills me!
So one, we were literally dead before Christ saved us. And two, sin needs to die. Serious, serious things, but full of hope because Christ gives life. And Christ is light and has no sin. How can we not give him all the praise?