Friday, January 29, 2010

The Christian Fundamental Yet Again

If you have followed my argumentation thus far, you may already see the necessary consequence of it for Christian practice. If salvation is founded upon an act already finished in history (as I've said the Word declares), what act after the fact can alter it? It's not like anyone can change what happened at Waterloo or Nagasaki (how would one even try?), so by extension the answer to my rhetorical question is none. What has to be done to achieve salvation has already been done, and nothing can add to or detract from it. All we can do is respond to it because of it.

Jesus rose from the dead: real body, real death, real resurrection. Take it as historical fact, believe it unconditionally without doubting. In Christ's act, our salvation (from sin, death and hell) was secured. How then do we respond to such a life changer? We can't ignore it without peril to our eternal soul. We can't redact it away and still be honest with ourselves. We can only acknowledge it, surrender ourselves to its inevitable conclusion, and admit to ourselves, to God, and to the world around us that it makes Jesus Lord. Lord of all, yes, but more particular, and perhaps more important, it makes Jesus Lord of me. If I believe in my heart, and confess with my mouth what my heart and mind knows, I will be saved.

I wish I could get my brothers and sisters off the spiritual roller coaster so many are on, where they feel saved when their devotion to God is cranking on all eight cylinders, but feel lost or in jeopardy if they've had a bad day or have fallen to some temptation. That is NOT faith in Christ and his resurrection, but faith in self. Though Communion has no "grace" in itself, it is meant to help us remember that by which we stand--not our own works, but a work by Christ finished in time. We must make up our minds once and for all about what it is we depend on and what secures us in the ark of safety. Everyone who will ever be saved will be saved for the exact same reason: Jesus died and rose from the dead so they acknowledged him as Master!

Enough said, at least for a while!  ;-)