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Archive for January 21st, 2014

But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.” (Hebrews 3: 13, NIV)

Some of you may have seen the 2000 movie, “Pay It Forward” about a young boy, with a troubled family who is given an unusual assignment by his social studies teacher.  Instead of  “paying someone back” for a good deed or favor done, “paying it forward”:  matching good deeds with good deeds to new people and in the movie the young boy begins a revolution in the lives of his family and those around him. I have not seen the movie.  Doing good deeds out of faith is a good thing but notice the premise of the movie is not doing good deeds out of faith in Jesus Christ, but PAYING it forward. 

How much does one pay?  If one is paying then one is buying something.  What is the person buying? In  a word:  salvation. How much does one pay for salvation?  We can’t pay it forward.  How much does one pay? We have the answer in today’s Gospel, how much.  ““Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1: 29)  How much did salvation cost?   “…you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your forefathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold, 19but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot.”  (1 Peter). Our silver and gold can not buy salvation, neither can our deeds. but the deed of His blood has bought us. He has paid the price of our sin, backwards and forwards with His priceless blood, the blood of the Lamb of God, because you and I can not pay it forward or backward.

            The Lord’s solution to the sin of the world is a lamb. His solution is our Savior.  It’s foolishness to the world. Salvation is not in government sponsored programs, or church sponsored programs for that matter, nor good intentions, nor again, paying it back or  “paying it forward”, not in men’s wisdom, or the great signs and works  of human religions, but a lamb.  Not just any lamb, it is this Lamb, the perfect Passover Lamb, not 50% man and 50% God, but 100%/100%: Behold!. The Lamb of God takes away the sin of the world.  When the Lord in His Law finds us out, we can not bear the sin and it is the sin of the world, heavier than the mere world Atlas bore.  In so many movies about army basic training, we hear the drill sergeant screaming, Can you take it!  I can take it, drill sergeant, yells the recruit.  They can…but sin and sorrow? No.  Even a tough Roman centurion could not take the illness of his beloved servant and he knew that in Jesus Christ pure holiness dwelt (and still does), and he sought the Christ (Matthew 8:  5-10). the Lamb of God is with us, the One has takes  away the sin of world. When in His Law He finds us out, then in His Christ, His beloved Son, He finds us.

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