Our church service yesterday was “dialogue day” – a chance for people to ask questions of our pastors and elders on matters of faith, the bible and the church. Afterwards, Raj, a man I had just met that day, remarked how he most enjoyed the questions from the younger people in our congregation… simple questions, he noted, that got to the heart of our walk… with no simple answers.
I’ve been thinking about one of those questions this morning… “Why did Christ have to die?” After all, God (being God) could have simply snapped his almighty fingers and achieved the same results… salvation with a good beat.
You think about the love God has poured out to us… and how we (aka I) respond to that love many times with apathy, selfishness, defiance and sin. How many hits can a relationship take before it becomes dissonant and totally irreconcilable? What does it take to restore a relationship that has been stepped in so many inconceivable ways?
In my home, if I forget to take out the trash, a simple “sorry” can usually right the ship. Forget an anniversary? Well, there better be some flowers involved. I guess the deeper the hurt, the more it takes to restore the balance… the trust… and the love. What then would it take to restore a relationship that’s been damaged in every way possible… by murder, dishonesty, unfaithfulness, deceit, lethargy, greed, and more, time and time again?
To restore such a relationship, it would take the greatest act of love ever possible. Every act of love, by definition, comes at a cost. So it’s not surprising that the greatest act would come at the highest cost. It was not enough that God would sacrifice his only son… it was not enough that Christ would endure the lashings, the nails, the beatings, the thorns, the struggle and pounding inside as the body struggles to breathe once more… I think this act becomes even more powerful and amazing because Christ himself was God. The almighty Creator, the Sovereign King, the Almighty Lord took on the pain of rejection, crucifixion and death in order to restore the balance… the trust… and the love.
Christ paid the price to restore the relationship… and through Him I am saved. Halleluiah! Halleluiah! Halleluiah!
PS: Happy Anniversary, Eileen!