Off to be killed…

…and then raised again.Be More Human / Mehr Mensch Sein by an untrained eye

Not going to receive any special instructions. Not going to find out any secrets for spiritual living.

Not going to get prodded with the stick of how I should be feeding the poor and helping the sick, and visiting the lonely…(all of which I should be doing).

I am going to receive the Word of God. I am going to (by the grace of God) receive from Him His law, in order to kill me off yet once again to my little ‘No  thank you God I can do it myself ‘ project. And then recieve from Him His promise of life, the forgiveness of my sins, my salvation…in the gospel, and in the body and blood of our Dear Lord who has poured out Himself for me (us)…which is pure gospel (no law).

This is a picture of baptism, by the way.

Death and Resurrection.  Repentance and Forgiveness.  Dying and Rising.

 

Isn’t that enough?

 

The Law, equal in stature to God’s Grace?

I have heard from a few people lately, that feel that God’s law somehow is equal in importance to God’s grace and mercy.

To that I say… balderdash!  Ridiculous!  Nonsense!  Wrong! Libra scales

Am I saying that God’s Law is not important? No I am not. God’s Law is important. But it is not as important as His mercy and grace.

Look, when God gave the tablets with the Ten Commandments on them to Moses, did He give it to Moses personally? No he didn’t. He said, “hey you, messenger boy…come here! Grab these tablets and take them down to Moses, I’ve got things to do.”

When He gave the promise of grace and mercy to Abraham did God use a messenger boy? No He didn’t. God gave the promise to Abraham Himself, personally.

St. Paul called the law “our custodian”, or ‘tutor’, before Christ came. But when Christ came, the law was fullfilled.

Now, the law is still in effect. Christ told us that Himself. But the law has been fullfilled and it no longer has dominion over us. Romans 10:4,  “Christ is the end of the law for all those who have faith.”

Galatians 5:1, “For freedom Christ has set us free.” Do we really want this freedom that Christ has won for us? Or are we so afraid of it, that we hang on to a few links of the chain (that is the law), so that we can retain just a wee little bit of our righteousness? So we can say, “I’m doing my part. I’m not like…him.”

If you cast off all but one link of the chain, you are not really free. Either Christ has done everything for you…and I mean EVERYTHING…or He has done nothing.

Thanks for listening.

            – Steve Martin

Why must we insist on doing it (wrong)?

“Joe Blow and Mary Googlanivich got saved yesterday.”

No foolin’?Confused Sign

And just how did that happen?

“Well, the same way it always happens…they decided to.”

Hey that sounds pretty easy…why didn’t I think of that!?

Now, since they’ve done the deed, they can just tool along on their merry way. I’m sure there won’t be any dying going on from here on out. It’s a done deal.

“Not so.  Now they’ve got a lot work to do. The spiritual project has just begun!”

Right.

It never ceases to amaze me how folks that elevate the Bible to the status of a paper pope, can totally ignore all the verses that say, without a doubt, that becoming a Christian has nothing to do…with you.

‘Are you Born Again?’

Yes!

And again…and again…and again…and agaibaptism1.jpgn…and again…and again…and again…

Until that day when I finally run out of ink(life). Then I will be born again for the last time and live in eternity with my heavenly Father and my Lord.

Thank you Lord, for your graciousness. Thank you for coming to me in water and in Word, in bread and wine.  Thank you for adopting me, before I could do anything myself.

Thank you…thank you…thank you…thank you…thank you…

‘No Foolin??’…

 One of the biggest fool jokes that I know of is that we humans can actually    choose to become believers in God.              

Is it God who acts and speaks life into us, or is it our decision and action that ultimately tips the scale in favor of belief? 

According to the scriptures, it’s the former.

God’s Word actually does something. (all by itself…without our help!)

You may not agree and that’s fine. I’m just here to tell you that you are dead wrong …that’s all.

Let’s go back to the beginning. The very beginning. Genesis. How in the world did God create… the world? If you answered,  “He spoke” …go to the head of the class.  God didn’t need a hand from another entity, let alone one that He had already created, to help Him create. God doesn’t need our cooperation when it comes to His wanting to create anything… whether it’s a bird, a tree, or faith in Himself. If He wants to, God can make the stones shout. Quite frankly, I think that would be a much easier task for God to do, than to create faith in Himself within the likes of us.

When one is in the path of the living Word of God, one is at risk for change. God’s Word actually does something. “God’s Word never returns void, it accomplishes what it sets out to do.” (Isaiah 55:11)

Yeah, but we have to do this, and we have to do that, in order for the puzzle to come together the way God wants it to.”

That is the old Adam spewing forth ‘the sinful self’. That is the old Adam/Eve not wanting to relinquish control. That is a refusal to let God be God and the striving of a created being to become a god, in and of himself. That’s all that is. Period.

Yeah but!…”  Enough of that “yeah but” horse dung! The “yeah but”, must be killed off and God will do that when we preach His Word faithfully. When the law of God is preached in it’s intended manner (to kill off the old Adam and Eve) and not as watered down principles for living, the death of the old Adam can happen, and the new man/woman can be born when the gospel (the forgiveness of sins in Jesus’ name) is proclaimed. God also does this killing and raising in baptism and holy communion. I feel a “yeah but” coming on! That old Adam/Eve in us just won’t leave it alone. “It can’t be that easy.” It wasn’t that easy…a man had to die… on a cross, no less! Do you think it was easy for God to manifest His Son as a servant, and then see him ridiculed, mocked, beaten, and staked to wood and left to die by the very ones He created and came to save? 

  Easy?  Are you kidding me?

God’s Word creates,  it destroys, and it re-creates. It does what It wills to do and not what we will It to do. (why is that so hard to understand? )

Yeah but …you mean,  He really is God

 Yes He is…and that’s no joke.

         

                        – Steve M.

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