Devotional thought for Good Friday

In Romans 5:7-9 Paul reminds us,

For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God.

Today we remember the greatest example of love the world has ever known.  This is the day we remember that Christ died for us while we were still sinners.  True, Paul writes this at a time when many who would read it were alive at the time of Christ’s death.  He could say “while we were still sinners” and look back on the crucifixion and the space of time before he believed in its value.  We look at it somewhat differently.

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/notre-dame-cathedral-on-fire-crucifix-altar-cross-paris/

Notre Dame altar cross, early Tuesday, April 16, 2019, by Philippe Wojazer, Reuters

From our standpoint Christ died before we were ever born.  He died before we ever sinned.  He also died long before we saw our need for a Savior.  How wonderful that by the time we saw our need, the Savior was risen.  The price for our sin had already been paid.  All that was lacking was our making use of Christ’s payment and asking it to be applied to us.

The love he shows to us is every bit as great as if we had known Christ personally while he walked the earth.  He was the lamb of God, taking away the sins of the world.  We are the sinners, who have corrupted the world by our sin.

As children of the very wealthy are in danger of not appreciating the true cost or worth of their riches, we run the risk of not appreciating the price that Christ paid.  We were born into a world whose sin was already dealt with at the cross.  We have been forgiven based on a work done long ago, a completed suffering.  We need to take some time to consider the cross.  Grace can be freely extended to us only because our Lord Jesus Christ humbled himself to a death that we deserved.

Thank you, thank you Jesus.

Amen.

Central Reflections: Closing Words

Paul’s Letter to the Romansapostle-paul

As Paul brings this letter to a close, he deals with details concerning his apostleship, leaves the Romans with numerous greetings and signs off with a doxology.

Rom 15.14-16.27.pdf

Rom 15.14-16.27.mp3

Central Streaming: Working on Unity

Paul’s Letter to the Romansapostle-paul

Not everything in our faith needs to be a big deal.  Things that are not a big deal can become a big deal if they need to disunity in the church.

Rom 14.1-15.13.pdf

Rom 14.1-15.13.mp3

Central Streaming: Genuine Love

Paul’s Letter to the Romansapostle-paul

We tend to think of love as an emotion or something completely connected to our feelings.  The Bible sees it somewhat differently, as Paul in this passage explains.

Romans 12.09-21.pdf

Romans 12.9-21.mp3

Central Streaming: Many Members

Paul’s Letter to the Romans

C-S-LEWIS

 

A good toe-nail is not an unsuccessful attempt at a brain: and if it were conscious it would delight in being simply a good toe-nail.

– C. S. Lewis (1898 – 1963),

Romans 12.3-8.pdf 

Romans 12.3-8.mp3

Central Streaming: Our Need for Grace

Paul’s Letter to the RomansMartin Luther King 1929-1968

[S]o many … dedicated people, having no one but themselves to save themselves, end up disillusioned … They are disillusioned because they started out with a great illusion. For them there is no sinner or no sin …      

– Martin Luther King, Jr (1929-1968)

Rom 1.18-3.20.pdf

Rom 1.18-3.20.mp3