Sunday, April 13, 2014

The Perfect Penitent

We are faced with a frightening alternative.

Either we accept that Jesus is just what He said.

Or else He is a lunatic or something worse.

For me, it is quite obvious that He was neither a lunatic nor a fiend.

22-23 But now that you’ve found you don’t have to listen to sin tell you what to do, and have discovered the delight of listening to God telling you, what a surprise! A whole, healed, put-together life right now, with more and more of life on the way! Work hard for sin your whole life and your pension is death. But God’s gift is real life, eternal life, delivered by Jesus, our Master.

Romans 6:22-23

The Message (MSG)

And consequently, no matter how strange or frightening or even unlikely it may seem, I have to accept that He is God.

God has landed in this world in human world.

God has come to this enemy-occupied world to save us.

And what was the purpose of it all?

What did He come to do?

45-49 We follow this sequence in Scripture: The First Adam received life, the Last Adam is a life-giving Spirit. Physical life comes first, then spiritual—a firm base shaped from the earth, a final completion coming out of heaven. The First Man was made out of earth, and people since then are earthy; the Second Man was made out of heaven, and people now can be heavenly. In the same way that we’ve worked from our earthy origins, let’s embrace our heavenly ends.

1 Corinthians 15:45-49

The Message (MSG)

It was to teach us and impart His wisdom.

But if you read the New Testament, you’ll find that there is another reason, something different.

And what was this other reason?

His death and His coming to life again.

Obviously Christians think that the most important thing about God coming to flesh is this.

He came to the earth to suffer and to be killed.

21-28 There is a nice symmetry in this: Death initially came by a man, and resurrection from death came by a man. Everybody dies in Adam; everybody comes alive in Christ. But we have to wait our turn: Christ is first, then those with him at his Coming, the grand consummation when, after crushing the opposition, he hands over his kingdom to God the Father. He won’t let up until the last enemy is down—and the very last enemy is death! As the psalmist said, “He laid them low, one and all; he walked all over them.” When Scripture says that “he walked all over them,” it’s obvious that he couldn’t at the same time be walked on. When everything and everyone is finally under God’s rule, the Son will step down, taking his place with everyone else, showing that God’s rule is absolutely comprehensive—a perfect ending!

1 Corinthians 15:21-28

The Message (MSG)

Many times people think that it’s because God was mad at us and wanted to punish us for joining the Father of Lies, the Great Rebel.

And Christ volunteered to be punished instead of us and so God let us off.

But this is not what Christians really believe or what Christianity is about.

In C. S. Lewis’s words “The central Christian belief is that Christ’s death has somehow put us right with God and given us a fresh start”.

He did not die because God needed to punish someone.

He died because God wanted to make things right with us and give us a new opportunity.

The Death-Dealing Sin, the Life-Giving Gift

12-14 You know the story of how Adam landed us in the dilemma we’re in—first sin, then death, and no one exempt from either sin or death. That sin disturbed relations with God in everything and everyone, but the extent of the disturbance was not clear until God spelled it out in detail to Moses. So death, this huge abyss separating us from God, dominated the landscape from Adam to Moses. Even those who didn’t sin precisely as Adam did by disobeying a specific command of God still had to experience this termination of life, this separation from God. But Adam, who got us into this, also points ahead to the One who will get us out of it.

Romans 5:12-14

The Message (MSG)

“We (the Christians) believe that the death of Christ is just that point in history at which something absolutely unimaginable from outside shows through into our own world. And if we cannot picture even the atoms of which our own world is built, of course we are not going to be able to picture this. Indeed, if we found that we could fully understand it, that very fact would show it was not what it professes to be – the inconceivable, the uncreated, the thing from beyond nature, striking down into nature like lightning”, C. S. Lewis – Mere Christianity

There are many theories what Christ’s death meant exactly.

But what is absolutely true, is that our understanding of God can never be full and there will always be things that we cannot understand.

We can only be sure that He did something unimaginable and that unbelievable act changed our relationship with God.

Christ Holds It All Together

15-18 We look at this Son and see the God who cannot be seen. We look at this Son and see God’s original purpose in everything created. For everything, absolutely everything, above and below, visible and invisible, rank after rank after rank of angels—everything got started in him and finds its purpose in him. He was there before any of it came into existence and holds it all together right up to this moment. And when it comes to the church, he organizes and holds it together, like a head does a body.

18-20 He was supreme in the beginning and—leading the resurrection parade—he is supreme in the end. From beginning to end he’s there, towering far above everything, everyone. So spacious is he, so roomy, that everything of God finds its proper place in him without crowding. Not only that, but all the broken and dislocated pieces of the universe—people and things, animals and atoms—get properly fixed and fit together in vibrant harmonies, all because of his death, his blood that poured down from the cross.

21-23 You yourselves are a case study of what he does. At one time you all had your backs turned to God, thinking rebellious thoughts of him, giving him trouble every chance you got. But now, by giving himself completely at the Cross, actually dying for you, Christ brought you over to God’s side and put your lives together, whole and holy in his presence. You don’t walk away from a gift like that! You stay grounded and steady in that bond of trust, constantly tuned in to the Message, careful not to be distracted or diverted. There is no other Message—just this one. Every creature under heaven gets this same Message. I, Paul, am a messenger of this Message.

Colossians 1:15-23

The Message (MSG)

His sacrifice of love made it possible for us, to be united with God, once again.

And what good will it do to us if we do not understand it?

We may not understand gravity but we are bound by it.

We may not understand relativity but our world is bound by it.

We may seek to understand these things better and peek at the glory and magnificence of the creation, as we may peek into glory and magnificence of God.

But some things defy our understanding and can only be believed.

The Life-Light

1-2 The Word was first,
the Word present to God,
    God present to the Word.
The Word was God,
    in readiness for God from day one.

3-5 Everything was created through him;
    nothing—not one thing!—
    came into being without him.
What came into existence was Life,
    and the Life was Light to live by.
The Life-Light blazed out of the darkness;
    the darkness couldn’t put it out.

John 1:1-5

The Message (MSG)

Like C. S. Lewis says, “We are told that Christ was killed for us, that His death has washed out our sins, and that by dying He disabled death itself. That is the formula. That is Christianity. That is what has to be believed”.

This post is part of an on-going series.

To begin, read Natural law. A post about the law we all have in our hearts.

If you would like to know what comes after read the post about Moral law.

Having read that, you'll need to know Which moral law to choose

If you agree we need to choose a moral law, maybe you'll agree that We need God  

After we have understood the need we have for God, it is time to research What is sin

Having accepted your need for God, what kind of God is exactly a Christian God? This you can find out about in What we Christians believe

Why is it so hard to follow Christian faith? What prevents you to believe in God?

Do not let yourself to be fooled by Christianity and water

Who was first? The chicken or the egg? Read the post Of good and band - who was there first? The chicken or the egg? 

If God is above everything else and did not create evil then Why God accepts the evil in the world?

We run on God, like a car on gas. This is why We cannot live without God 

Do you want to know about the good dreams God sent to us? Read Who is Jesus?

You can find this post also in 40 Days of Seeking Him in Lent 2014, Holy Week 


  1. Jesus Christ is Lord and Savoir n HE fave HIMSELF up freely so that we, are forgiven if sin yesterday, today and tomorrow. We are saved by Grace , unmerited favor, now fully favorred and blessed. At the cross HE said, it is finished, we now LACK NOTHING. WE HAVE VICTORY, WE HAVE health and wealth.

    1. That is so true! It is amazing what He has done for me and you, and for all of us. God bless you and Happy Easter!

  2. Absolutely true. Your photos are always so beautiful too. Thank you!

  3. Great posting. The pictures are so beautiful.

  4. Such a beautiful, reflective post. I'd love for you to link it up to the 40 Days of Seeking Him meme, Holy Week, link up.

  5. Thanks for leaving the links to other related posts at the end of this one, and when I have the time, I think I will revisit: "If God is above everything else and did not create evil then Why God accepts the evil in the world?"

    1. Thank you for your comment, Yona. I hope you will visit and enjoy the other posts!

  6. It's Holy Week remembering Christ's sacrifice. Rejoice for He is risen. Happy Easter! Thanks for inspiring posts.

    1. Thank you! I'm glad you enjoyed the post! And Happy Easter to you, too!

  7. The water and the bird image are quite beautiful. Have a great Easter!

    1. Thank you, Krystal! I'm glad you enjoyed the images and Happy Easter to you, too!

  8. Each one of the photos are so beautiful! I am not a Christian however I do believe in God and that He has power over all.

    1. Thank you, Bismah! I'm glad you enjoyed the pictures. May God bless you!

  9. I can't relate to this post I'm sorry.
    But beautiful pictures.

    Happy Easter.

    1. Not everyone can, Saga. Thank you for reading and Happy Easter to you, too!

  10. Always inspiring and those photos are beautiful! Thank you for sharing! Happy Easter!

  11. Such beauty in the photos! God has blessed me in many many ways!