Sunday, April 12, 2009

My Chains are Gone

This was a message I sent last year to our FCA officers, with some recent additions:

Easter got me thinking today. Over the last few years, God has revealed big themes to me as far as my faith. A few years ago it was the idea of brokenness, that I will not allow God to use me until I am broken in spirit. Then came "redemptive suffering" or suffering for the sake of others. Recently, I've been learning more and more about freedom. We talk about it all the time, especially in the context of war and terrorism and oppression. But what does freedom in my faith mean?

Read Romans. Romans is a book about freedom. It's about Freedom from sin through grace but also freedom from the law through grace. If we choose to obey the law we are slaves to righteousness. If we choose to sin, we are slaves to our sin (Romans 6:15-18). Either way we are slaves; we are not free "So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God's law, but in the sinful nature a slave to the law of sin" (Romans 7:25). Through Christ we are free. The law, whether it is God's, man's or sin's, cannot save or condemn us. In freedom is redemption, peace and joy.

"For sin shall not be your master, because you are not under law, but under grace" (Romans 6:14)

Easter is an empty tomb. All of the cosmos, in it's mighy, vast and infinite time and space, converge in this singular moment in history, in an ordinary and empty tomb.

Cross = Forgiveness

Tomb = Freedom

On Friday, we celebrated the forgiveness, the Passion, that Jesus had for us. We rejoice in the suffering that he endured; He became the Lamb that was slain (Isaiah 53).

Today, we celebrate the resurrection and the freedom that came in that empty tomb. No chains, no stone, no tomb can hold us. Not even our sins, death or the judgement of man. Sin cannot enslave us, the law cannot hold us captive. The tomb is empty, we are free.

Amazing Grace, I've been set free
My God, My Savior, has ransomed me
And like a flood, his mercy reigns
Unending love, Amazing Grace

Happy Easter

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