Once upon a time there was perfection. Everything was absolutely perfect, even love. For love to perfect, though, it cannot be forced. So, naturally, there was a choice: Love and obedience or hate and disobedience. They chose the latter, for the disobedience was alluring and dazzling and desirable. Instantly, the perfection was shattered. Black blots smeared across the once-pristine page. Where there was once beauty, there was now filth. Where there was once bloom, there was now decay. And where there was once life, there was now death. The End.
Or so they thought.
But then they received a promise, a promise that some day something would make it right again. That perfection they sacrificed for fool’s gold? They could have it back. And they did. It came centuries later, but one day a baby was born. He was no ordinary baby—though, in some ways, he was—and he grew up to be no ordinary man—though many passed him by without a glance. He also did not die an ordinary death—though it was the death of the commonest, meanest criminals. This death did not end ordinarily, either.
Remember how when they chose disobedience, life turned to death? Well, now, the opposite happened: Death turned to life. The man rose again, and the world has never been the same.
Oh, yes, there’s still death. There’s still decay. And there is still filth. Darkness abounds. But there is also light—yes, a glimpse of starlight that becomes a panoramic vision if we believe. More on that later, though. Anyway, the man died. He rose again. He’s gone now, but not really. He’s coming back, and when he does, that perfection that they started out with will be ours. Forever. The End.
Or maybe not.
It’s only the end if you align yourself with that man’s life and death and resurrection. There’s an invitation here, you see: This man’s victory that destroys oppression, his purity that reverses corruption, his life that overturns death, it can all be yours. You can claim it—but know that you also will be claimed. As your Maker and again as your Savior, he makes a claim on you. There’s a freedom, you’ll find, in being told to go this way and not that. And if you do not follow the way? Is it back to death?
Ah, but he’s claimed you, in health and in sickness, for better or for worse. You, my friend, are new. When you fall off the way, there will always be his hand pulling you up. The questions are these: Do you want to try to follow? Will you take his hand and keep getting back up?
It’s another paradox: You must lose all to gain all. Give your life to him (and what that means, well, I think it’ll take your life to find out; this blog tries to explore some of it). If you do, you—body and soul—will live forever with him. Starting now, lasting forever. The End.
If you have no idea of what I’m talking about or if you want to know more, I’d encourage you to look up the real story, the Story of all Stories: The Bible. Start in John and get to know Jesus. Then read Matthew or Mark or Luke to get to know him even more. Or maybe go back to the beginning, with Genesis, and read through the greatest tale ever written. You want a glimpse of starlight? Well, you’ll find that there—and more.
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
~ Romans 6:23
Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away. Behold, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to Himself in Christ, not counting men’s trespasses against them.
~ 2 Corinthians 5:17-19
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