Christ Alone

Posted: September 24, 2020 in Uncategorized

In Christ alone my hope is found He is my light, my strength, my song This Cornerstone, this solid Ground Firm through the fiercest drought and storm What heights of love, what depths of peace When fears are stilled, when strivings cease My Comforter, my All in All Here in the love of Christ I stand

“Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.”

Matthew 16:24

A new Supreme Court nominee will be announced this Saturday by President Trump. Amy Coney Barrett, one of the presumed favorites, quickly became a lightening rod of opposition because of her abiding faith in Christ. In 2017, during her confirmation hearing to fill a seat on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh District, Senator Dianne Feinstein said, “The dogma lives loudly within you, and that is a concern.” Those fears arose out of Amy’s 2006 graduation speech, “No matter how exciting any career is, what is it really worth if you don’t make it part of a bigger life project to know love and serve the God who made you?” Why would Dianne fear a religion that promotes “love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control? James Woods, the actor, answered that question yesterday, “They loathe Christians primarily because the Bible is unequivocal about abortion, homosexuality, and pederasty.” The State is threatened by a perceived pretender to its throne.

My pastor on the East Coast, Mike Ruel, posted Matthew 16:24 this morning. “Deny yourself, take up your cross, follow Christ.” The Christian choice tolerates no middle ground. Christ demands all or nothing. The Christian life births out of total surrender. We have no rights, no leverage, before Holy God. Lost in the warp of sin, we possess no means to cure sin’s horrific effects. Christ alone is our hope. The verses of an old hymn encapsulate our surrender to Jesus. “All to Jesus I surrender, all to Him I freely give. I will ever love and trust Him, in His presence daily live. All to Jesus, I surrender, humbly at His feet I bow. Worldly pleasures all forsaken, Take me, Jesus, take me now. All to Jesus I surrender, make me Savior wholly Thine. May the Holy Spirit fill me, may I know Thy power divine.”

“In those days Israel had no king, everyone did as they saw fit.”

Judges 21:25

What do we do as human beings in our sin? We assume the role of God. We choose right from wrong and we don’t take kindly to others challenging our choices. The Bible provokes society precisely because it confronts us with our sin. Jesus said, “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you because of me.” Matthew 5:11 The world Jesus lived in condemned him with hate. Do we Christians presume a different fate for ourselves? So how do we respond? I answer with a question, “How did Jesus respond?”

“When they came to the place called the Skull, they crucified him there, along with the criminals—one on his right, the other on his left. Jesus said, “Father forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”

Luke 24;33,34

Never lose sight of the face of God in any human being regardless of the warp of sin. Resist your instinct to close your heart when hurt. Never stop loving, never stop praying. Embrace the redemptive power of the gospel. Take up your cross knowing “the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.” 1 John 4:4 Like Paul, proclaim, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes.” We serve the Great God, infinite goodness. Love with his love again and again and again. In the end, Christ is all that matters.

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