Tuesday, August 23, 2011

10th Sunday after Pentecost -- Sacrifice

After laying a theological foundation that re-orients the identity of God's people, Paul turns to the living out of that identity.  Paul uses the language of sacrifice but turns it so that it is rooted in the life of Christ rather than death.

An excerpt from the sermon:

But why do we Christians so easily accept notions of sacrifice?  For Christianity the final sacrifice of death was that of Jesus.  In the midst of the sacrificial system set up in Israel, Jesus was raised up to be God’s final answer to sin and death.  God did not make the hard decision  of having another pay, but chose to put himself on the line in the person of Jesus, his Son.  And Paul makes much of this clear in Romans.  Paul begins with the complete power of sin in the world.  Sin holds everyone captive.  Jew, Gentile, everyone both inside and outside of God’s chosen people.  “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,” he writes in chapter 3.  But that also means that all are placed in right relationship with God (that is, God undoes the power of sin) in Jesus, whom God has put forward as the sacrifice once and for all. 

Read the whole thing here.

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