Devotion for Thursday, March 13th

Brooke Eikenberry Lent 2014

(Romans 6:1-7)
What then are we to say? Should we continue in sin in order that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin go on living in it?  Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? Therefore we have been buried with him by baptism into death, so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his.  We know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be destroyed, and we might no longer be enslaved to sin.  For whoever has died is freed from sin. 

Today’s passage is part of a very logical, step-by-step theological statement by Paul in a letter to the Christians in Rome.   At issue is the question of how God will judge each of us on the final day.  Well, I don’t buy most of it!  I wanted a new passage, but decided to share my honest feelings about this part of the Bible I can’t believe.

I believe the Bible is a collection of laws, stories, letters, poems written a long time ago by ordinary people trying to either record events in their oral tradition or to explain events that were happening to them.  Just as I don’t agree with every letter to the editor, or every work of fiction that I read, I don’t agree with all of Paul’s reasons the man Jesus came to walk this earth.

Paul’s argument is based on Adam’s original that we possess from birth. Jesus came to Earth to cancel that sin when He was crucified.  That’s why Paul believes being baptized is so important – to cancel our original sin.  My brain shouts, “WRONG”!!!! !  My little grandchildren weren’t born sinners; they were born innocent little ones full of loving trust. The God I believe in wouldn’t create Jesus with the intent of killing him just so I didn’t have to worry about going to Hell.

So, are we free to sin all we want just because the grace of God is ours even without asking?  Of course not!  Use Jesus’ life as our example for living. What do I think that looks like?  John Wesley said it best. “Do all the good you can, by all the means you can, in all the ways you can, in all the places you can, at all the times you can, to all the people you can, as long as ever you can!”

– Submitted by Barbara Thompson

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