Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Christ Died In My Place

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For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. 10 For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.11 And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation. (Romans 5:6-11 NKJV)

I do not know about you, but as I look back at my life before I was saved, I've done many things to be ashamed of. I lived a vile and sinful lifestyle. Because I loved my sin, I wanted nothing to do with God. I use to laugh at those who followed Jesus. To further that, I thought I was being "cool" using His holy name to express disgust. Today it blows me away that while I was an enemy of God, Jesus died for me so I could be reconciled to God. WOW! "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in His should not perish, but have everlasting life." (John 3:16) What an amazing thing, that even though I was His enemy, He still loved me and died for me. He wanted me to be in a right relationship with Him. He came from heaven to earth to save sinners. Not just me, but Jesus is in the business of saving sinners.

In light of that, why is it that when someone does something which offends me, I want retaliation? The first thing which comes to my mind is, "how can I get back this person?" In stead of seeking revengeance, why not look at the situation as an opportunity to display the love of Christ toward this individual and those who are watching?

43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, 45 that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so? 48 Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect. (Matthew 5:43-48 NKJV)

25 comments:

  1. Love this Ken! This makes me think of the verse in 1 Peter 3:9, "Don't repay evil for evil. Don't retaliate with insults when people insult you. Instead, pay them back with a blessing. That is what God has called you to do, and he will bless you for it."

    The idea of turning the other cheek when someone gives us an insulting slap is not what we really want to do; most of us would surely want to strike back! But He calls us to show mercy and compassion where mercy and compassion are not deserved. He has certainly done the same for us! :)

    Thanks for this wonderful post my friend!
    Denise

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    1. Thank you Denise for sharing your thoughts. What an excellent verse you shared form 1 Peter 3:9. It sure can be hard to show mercy, but it is the right thing to do. I believe God touches many hearts when we do. Blessings to you also, my friend.

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  2. Loved this post. You know, sometimes I think we forget the depth of what God really did for us through the sacrifice of His Son. I think it's easy to think we were people that just needed to have a relationship with God. The truth is just what you said: "...even though I was His enemy..." That is the fact that makes Jesus' sacrifice so overwhelming. We weren't just *bad* people - we were enemies. And yet, He still chose to die for us. THAT is love!!

    And yes, I love how you continued with your thought. The love that was expressed to us on the Cross, is something we are called to pass on to those who might offend, hurt, disappoint, persecute...us.

    Love your enemies - God certainly knows what He's talking about.

    GOD BLESS!

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    1. Sharon, Often times people think that they deserve to go to heaven, and that is a big error on our part. When one realizes that they are in fact an enemy of God, yet He still died for them and pursues with them anyway, it is life changing. How can we not appreciate that and love Him in return. I appreciate your comment and may God bless you

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  3. NICE!!
    Isn't Jesus amazing!?! How He can totally and 100% change a person? What a sweet testimony Ken. Thank you for sharing this.

    You are a blessing to the Kingdom and I am so happy to know you are my brother! One day will be an amazing time of meeting all my online brothers and sisters and we can rejoice together and worship our King.

    Blessings brother,
    <><

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    1. Child of God, Oh yes, He is amazing. I see the changed life in me from before Christ and after Christ. It is like night and day. It is not just me, but so many people He has changed. It is such an amazing and wonderful thing. Thank you for your kind words, they are much appreciated. It will be an awesome time when we get to heaven and meet our online brothers and sisters. I am looking forward to it. I too am blessed that you are my friend and sister in Christ. May God bless you

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  4. Hi Ken,
    it is one of the tricks of satan to point the finger at somone who has done you a wrong, it is a way of trying to get us to go against what the Lord wants us to do. I find that if I remember that we do not sin against one another, that when we are doing something that God disaproves of we are actually sinning against God, then I can look at what someone is doing to me in another light, that it is a weakness which can also lie in my own carnal mind. If I retaliate then I am in a sense failing the test, and the love of Christ that I could have shown the other person ( that might have placed 'hot coals' on their head ) has been denied it's power.

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    1. Brenda, Satan is the enemy, not those who seek to do us harm. He will do everything he can that we do not represent Jesus and show His love. So true what you said, that we are sinning against God. I think of the passage, "you did to the least of these, you did it to me." That makes one think, doesn't it? I thank you for your comment and appreciate you visiting my blog. May God bless you

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    1. Thank you JBR, and may God bless you.

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  6. It is all about choice..If we have God's word in our heart the choice will be easier to make...but it is still choosing forgiveness over revenge. I always enjoy your insight into scripture and our daily living.

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    1. Thank you Dee. That is key, to have God's Word dwell in our hearts and through Christ, we are able to choose forgiveness over revenge. May God bless you.

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  7. Amen Ken! Jesus love is so amazing. He wants to save us all from sin.

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    1. Thank you Karen. Yes! His love is so amazing. May God bless you.

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  8. I once heard it said that, instead of getting upset when somebody does something that offends us, we should stop and think to ourself: "I wonder what is going on in their life and what is missing in their life that would cause them to think, speak or action in that manner? This changes our heart attitude from hate to love ... from hurt to help. I have also heard this reflective statement: "There, except by the grace of God, go I". This side of heaven, with our sinful desires of the flesh, we have to keep our eyes upon the Lord. We surely depend upon God!

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    1. Brian, often times we do not consider what is going on in other peoples lives. If we did know, we might look at their situation differently. For example, it is easy to look down on a homeless person saying, they are just lazy or love their booze too much. The thing is, many are not there by choice. Many are mentally ill, for example. Rightly said, we must keep our eyes upon the Lord and depend on God. We can only love others when we let God love them through us. Thank you and I pray that you have a blessed weekend.

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  9. I was just reading again Corrie ten Boom's testimony of how only Jesus could give her the love to forgive her captors during WW2. Thankful for the Love of God.

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    1. Karen, Me too, I too am thankful for God's love. There is an amazing healing when we forgive those who offend us. Thank you for your comment and I pray that you have a blessed weekend.

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  10. It is an amazing love that Jesus has for us even with all the bad things we do. Because he does love us that much we should also love and forgive others. Even though it's hard. Well said, Ken.

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    1. Peggy, well said. Oh boy, it sure can be hard at times to love and forgive others. We must keep our eyes on Jesus and seek to live life to please Him. May God bless you.

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  11. Hi Ken
    It is hard not to want to get back at someone who hurts us in some way. Everyday I pray that the Lord will just help me to see others through His eyes. I don't always succeed at that!
    Blessings
    Chelle

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    1. Chelle, I understand exactly what you are saying. The first thing I want to do is to strike back in anger. I want to make someone pay for what they have done. Like you say, we need to pray daily in this regard. Thank you and God bless you

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  12. Some powerful thoughts you shared, both on how Christ died to save me when I rejected Him and denied Him. How can I walk in unforgiveness when I have been forgiven so much? When the person I won't forgive, Christ died to also pay the penalty for their sins too. Especially when it's a fellow Christian...how I hold against them what Christ paid the penalty for and have forgiven them.

    May we walk by faith by the grace of God!

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  13. Susan, you make an important point here. We must remember that Christ died for them also. You are right on when you say, if they are a Christian, how can we hold against them what Christ has forgiven them of. Thank you and God bless.

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  14. "For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God's sight, but it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous.' Rom. 2:13 He is not referencing the OT written code.

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