Friday, September 14, 2007

who gave Himself

photo: full moon rising over Lethbridge, Alberta

Last night was predominantly sleepless. During these dark, solitary hours, I am particularly prone to attack, despair, discouragement. However, I sensed the Lord giving me this scripture yesterday for pondering... it proved to be effective in my defense against attack last night as well as a source of joy during the day. It is good to return to the bottomless foundational truths to reinforce and restore what the world seeks constantly, to erode.

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ,
who gave Himself for our sins
so that He might rescue us from this present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be the glory forevermore. Amen.
Galatians 1:3-5

  • gave HIMSELF. Not an external, peripheral token, but His very self. Not a day or a week or even a decade, but His very SELF. God the Son, stepped into time, donning flesh of His creation, identifying with us. That is the part that captures my heart - He did this in such as way as to enable us to recognize Him, understand Him, identify with Him, and follow Him. For this total identification, as well as to fulfill the qualifications for High Priest, (Hebrews 2:17) He laid down aspects of His Deity that would have given Him an advantage that rendered His example untouchable. But then after coming into this world and living for us, He died ... for our SIN. He didn't die for the cute, sincere, well-intentioned human frailties, but for the sin which cut us off from God the Father. The sin that permeates, even polluting our seemingly good intentions. He died for the "me" that is ugly and untouchable by God the Father. Not the "me" that He knew would eventually turn to Him... choose Him... receive Him... Love Him. He died for the "me" that rejected Him, spat on Him, nailed Him to the cross.
so that....

  • He might rescue us from this present evil age.... Good news. We've been rescued. I had nothing to do with the Lord dying for my sin - I was passive in my rescue. I have been rescued from eternal death / damnation / separation from God, and have been rescued from this present evil as well. This present evil that works constantly to convince me that I am at risk, floundering, vulnerable. This present evil, that can so overwhelm us at times, that we forget to draw our Sword, causing us to become focused on the battle, forgetting that it has been won. It is not MY ability to fight that this victory is based upon. This victory is based on the work of Christ. To bring that eternal victory into the dark hours of the night, I need to draw the Sword, overcoming the evil with the power of the Word. (Ephesians 6:10-17) My focus needs to be my all sufficient Savior - not the details I might otherwise choose to be consumed with.

  • According to the will of our God and Father - - the foundation of my confidence is in being in God's will. Knowing He is faithful. Knowing His Word has power. Knowing I am to use the Word as my defensive weapon, not my own reasoning power, problem solving ability.

  • To Whom be the glory forevermore. I must be willing to relinquish any fantasy of having contributed to the battle with my own strength, with my own anything. I cannot even use the Word in my own strength.

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