Is God really all that interested in our efforts to make Him our own?

I don’t think so.   In Safe Hands by Dave Hayward

I think He is busy trying to kill off our efforts.

I think our efforts at making God our own are misguided at best and very damaging at worst.

We are His own. He makes believers out of us. The person who believes he is still in charge needs to be killed off. That’s what God does in Baptism. That’s what God does in His Supper and in His preached Word.

But since we are inveterate non-believers, we find it hard to give up the religious projects that makes little gods of ourselves. And we continue to sin. So we don’t abandon, or forget our Baptisms, but rather we return to Baptism, “daily” as Luther said. Baptism moves through life with us. It carries us.

You may not like it, but our God really is…God. He is in charge. He creates, and gives life where there was none.   

Baptism is a gift of God. He kills off the old sinner in us and clothes us in Christ. St. Paul said that “all of us who were baptized have put on Christ.” That doesn’t sound like a mere ‘symbol’ of something to me.

One would think that would be  Good News for people.(It is)

But many just can’t give up their “free will”.

“Free will” is not the solution…it is the problem.

God’s will, in His Word (and that includes the Sacraments of Holy Baptism and Holy Communion which are visable Word) IS the solution. 

Ironically, rejecting the real presence of God in Baptism, or Holy Communion, doesn’t make one less religious in that self-centered way… but more so!   Now the whole project revolves around you, and what you say, feel, think, or do!

I guess that’s it for now.

Thank you.  Have a nice day.

 

PS- In trusting in our Baptisms, we can concentrate on what God has done, is doing, and will yet do for us…and we can take the onus off of ourselves. And we are free to concentrate on our neighbors. That’s where our “free will” can do some good, if we aren’t so obsessed with staring at our navels and cultivating our own holiness.

 

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13 Responses

  1. St Stephen

    You hit that one out of the ballpark. How much better to know Jesus made us his own then vice versa. We change our minds sometimes hourly or more frequently. What a horrible thing to trust is our deeds and decisions.

    Doing what is our duty can be done by nonbelievers. Whenever I hear another Christian drone on and on about their good works I want to ask them if they want a cookie for doing their duty. I ask myself that all the time.

    God’s Peace. †

    • Yeah, that is what I was going to say! Jesus was interested enough to do all the work for us so we couldn’t mess it up…*; )

      • …and, oops…I forgot this part!

        John 17:20-26 NIV
        Jesus Prays for All Believers

        20″My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 21that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one: 23I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me. 24″Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world. 25″Righteous Father, though the world does not know you, I know you, and they know that you have sent me. 26I have made you known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them.”

  2. St. David,

    Once again, you encourage me with your comments and insight into the faith of Christ Jesus.

    I think they do want something. I’d settle for a cookie, but all I’m going to get is a God who holds His nose (at my efforts) and points to His Son.

  3. Good post. My first thought, and I apologize for thinking it, is, “Wow, does Steve really write this stuff all on his own?” 😉 Your blog helps me see how backwards some of our doctrines really are.

    A few years ago, someone tried to hammer into me about our free will. I didn’t think I had one, and I still don’t think so. Well, I have some freedon to make choices that are beneath me, like what to eat today. The only One with free will is God, and He chose to die for those of us that are beneath Him. I’ve never thought of that until your post. Thanks.

  4. Steve,
    Great post! And about sums it up.

  5. Thanks for the good words, my friends.

    Keep on keepin’ on!

  6. I hear so many preachers say…”You need to make Jesus Lord of your life”. Hello…..we don’t make Him anything!

    He is “Lord” of the greatest saint…..and He is Lord of the lowest of sinners!

    P.S. Hey Steve…..winters coming in Pa……do you still have those gorgeous apartments???

  7. Thanks, Ike!

    We don’t have the apartments, but we rent one.

    I’m working my rear end off trying to help pay the rent!

    Anytime you want to pop in for awhile, you are welcome!

    The photos didn’t show the train horns which can blast one out of their skin…but hey…you can’t have everything.

  8. Great post Steve!

  9. How anyone can read the bible and not give the whole of salvation to Him is beyond me.
    I echo Ike, and also really rebel at the terms , “Accept Jesus” and “Let Jesus into your heart”

    The mystery is that He accepted me, and you do not need to “let” God do anything.

    Reading your post, I agree with you, can I take Lutheran communion now?

    Can I car pool with Ike? seriously, it gets cold here!

  10. I agree! It’s totally from God but you just need to let Him into your heart and accept …

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