It is a delight to be the spouse of a hard working, joy-filled, dedicated man.

Friday, April 10, 2009

My Meditations Today

For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe. For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom: But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness. 1 Corinthians 1:21-23.

O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed among you as crucified? This only I want to learn from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh? Have you suffered so many things in vain—if indeed it was in vain? Therefore He who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you, does He do it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?— just as Abraham “believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.” Therefore know that only those who are of faith are sons of Abraham. And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel to Abraham beforehand, saying, “In you all the nations shall be blessed.” So then those who are of faith are blessed with believing Abraham.

For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse; for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who does not continue in all things which are written in the book of the law, to do them.” But that no one is justified by the law in the sight of God is evident, for “the just shall live by faith.” Yet the law is not of faith, but “the man who does them shall live by them.” Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”), that the blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles in Christ Jesus, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.

Brethren, I speak in the manner of men: Though it is only a man’s covenant, yet if it is confirmed, no one annuls or adds to it. Now to Abraham and his Seed were the promises made. He does not say, “And to seeds,” as of many, but as of one, “And to your Seed,” who is Christ. And this I say, that the law, which was four hundred and thirty years later, cannot annul the covenant that was confirmed before by God in Christ, that it should make the promise of no effect. For if the inheritance is of the law, it is no longer of promise; but God gave it to Abraham by promise.

What purpose then does the law serve? It was added because of transgressions, till the Seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was appointed through angels by the hand of a mediator. Now a mediator does not mediate for one only, but God is one. Is the law then against the promises of God? Certainly not! For if there had been a law given which could have given life, truly righteousness would have been by the law. But the Scripture has confined all under sin, that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe. But before faith came, we were kept under guard by the law, kept for the faith which would afterward be revealed. Therefore the law was our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor.

For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise. Galatians 3

We are not saved by law or ritual. It matters little how well we follow the law, the days we obligate and hold dear, how deep or accurate our rituals are performed. We are not made righteous by the symbols we wear.

The crucifix is not mere symbol, not mere ideal, it is reality. Christ died. Christ hung upon a cruel tree for us. We are not freed from sin because of the idea of a cross or the thought of a Substitute. We are free because He, who had become man, did indeed pay our price. We are free only because He, who was utterly righteous, hung upon the cursed tree. We are free because after he was beaten and humiliated He died upon the cross, held by the blood stained tree until he breathed His last breath.

Gaze upon Him, suffering unto death upon that cross, bloody, battered, humiliated, and scorned and know that you are free because He is there, He has taken the punishment and disgrace in your stead.

See the empty cross tomorrow, the open tomb is there but for meditation another day, give today, the full day to see the cross in its fullness of the pain and grief, the pain we create, the grief we cause, that our Christ has taken upon himself for us. In His pain and our release grieve and rejoice for what He has done today.


Ted M. Gossard said...

Amen, Lanny. Your thoughts are very much the same as mine, entering into this day. Good to just reflect on the sufferings and death of our Savior and Lord.

Anonymous said...

Hi Lanny, I want to wish you and your family a very blessed Easter.

Sparky ♥ ∞ said...

Very good and another Amen. Thank you God for letting us be "saved by grace, not by works", saved by the innocent blood of Jesus.
Easter ((Hugs)) to you and your family!

Daisy said...

This is an excellent time to meditate and reflect, Lanny.

Lisa @ Life with 4! said...

Yes!!! I am FREE because of that blood-stained cross and what Jesus did there. But I sooooo look forward to the empty tomb. Without it, the payment would not be complete!

Don said...

He is Risen!

Tipper said...

The awe and wonder of Easter calls me to mediatate-but also to weep and run with joy. Nice post!

Far Side of Fifty said...

Lanny, I like to think of this day between Good Friday and Easter a preparation day..just as they washed and wrapped Jesus body and wept. Our sins are all wrapped up and paid for in full by Easter morning. Grace! I wish you a blessed Easter! :)

Karen said...

You are a blessing! Thanks for your thoughts on this wonderful Easter weekend.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Blessed resurrection day to you and yours. The Lord has risen indeed!

guild-rez said...

Great pictures of beautiful daffodils!