Friday, March 24, 2006

Today is the 24th day of Lent. I spent my morning devotion reading and studying Rom 3:21-26, which according to Cranfield, is the centre and heart of almost the entire book of Romans.

21 But now a righteousness from God, apart from law, has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. 22 This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. 25 God presented him as a sacrifice of atonement, through faith in his blood. He did this to demonstrate his justice, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished— 26 he did it to demonstrate his justice at the present time, so as to be just and the one who justifies those who have faith in Jesus.

This is the heart of the gospel. It is not only the crucifixion of Christ, for the cross by itself would have been no saving act of God; but the crucifixion together with the resurrection and exaltation of the crucified.

This is the event of history.

I find that we have mostly focused so much on the cross, we have not thought much about the crucifixion. Could it be that we spent the 40 days of Lent pondering and meditating on the cross but only one day in Easter celebrating the risen Christ?

But Eastertide is longer than Lent, stretching from Easter until before Pentecost, which falls this year on June 4th.

So let us therefore be reminded that we are called to celebrate the love of God in his redeeming act of the cross, the resurrection and the exaltation of Christ.

We usually do not forget to celebrate Easter, so let us not forget Eastertide - to celebrate his resurrection and life with every moment, with every breath.

Picture by Dominic Morel

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