Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Love and Death

The apostle John tells us that "God is love." (1 John 4:8) In the next breath he tells us that this love of God's was manifested---shown, revealed, made clear---by His sending His only Son into the world to be the propitiation (an atoning sacrifice) for our sins.  So God's love is revealed to us through death, the death of Christ. Love is death and Christ tells us to follow His example. 


Dietrich Bonhoeffer (Christian martyred by the Nazis) said, "When Christ calls a man, he bids him come and die." So our returning love to God is our call to death.  I think we get told way too much how to live the Christian life.  The longer I walk with God the more I am realizing I need to know more how to die.  A dead person does not feel pain, thinks no independent thoughts, has no expectations or ambitions.  They're dead.  Certainly our bodies are to be presented as "living sacrifices" (Romans 12:1) But how to die when we are alive is an ongoing challenge.  We are presented with opportunities to love through death daily. Do I embrace those? Or even recognize them?


Christ humbled Himself and became obedient unto death. (Phil. 2:8) He thought others better than himself, He did nothing through selfish ambition or conceit, He put the interest of others ahead of Himself; He suffered mistreatment, being misunderstood,  being falsely accused, and torture----all for me, to show love for me.  We love God because He first loved us.  This means we are called to die. Goes against all the modern thinking and culture--to look for ways to die.



4 comments:

B. Schaefer said...

BEAUTIFUL! Ironically or coincidentally (although we know in the Lord, there are no coincidences), I have been using that Bonhoeffer quote - "When Jesus calls a man, he bids him come and die..." SO MANY times in the last two weeks! It's one of my favorite quotes of all time, but ...very poignant to what the Lord is trying to teach me now (and has undoubtedly been trying to teach me for a LONG TIME). Love you dear sister!

Anonymous said...

So is not to die also to live as Christ?

Anonymous said...

That death that we are called to do, is a death to self. But in return, it is life unto God given through the Holy Spirit, which is really the only true life. To live the Christian life, is to die to self constantly. Our flesh does not want to do that, and so that is where the problem comes to us sinners, we fight that. When you write about what a dead person is like - feels no pain, no independent thoughts, no expectations or ambitions - that is quite true, we are to mortify the flesh. And as we do that, and the true life of Christ is manifest in us, it will be overcoming the flesh, and we will truly live, so our life will be one of living in the power of the Holy Spirit and not in the power of death of our flesh. Yes, die to self, but LIVE unto God and serving Him and His will, no matter the fleshly pain.
Praying for you.

Caer Clan said...

Thanks for all the prayers and comments. Appreciate them. Paul said, "For me to live IS Christ, and to die is gain." What I am pondering and seeking is to BE what he said, to live IS Christ....just to clarify...