Monday, May 9, 2011

Lies Preachers Tell: It ain't about you...

So this week, I thought I'd bring up a series of lies that you and I have heard.  The content is interesting, for sure.  Even more so the source of the content:  preachers.  Maybe they mean well, maybe they don't, but they're not telling the truth either way.

Lie #1 has many expressions and corollaries and goes something like this:  if you were the only person in the world, Jesus would've died for you because He loved you that much.  Or, while He was on the cross, I was on His mind.  Or, popularly set forth in this song (key line:  you took the fall and thought of me above all).

Here's the biblical issue:  while the love of God for us, demonstrated in Christ, is beyond description and overwhelming, what appears to be happening at the cross is a dual display.  Certainly, God shows us His love for us there.  And we should never forget that.  Therein is the lie, though, because there was more happening at the cross than the demonstration of God's love.  I guess it's technically more a half-truth.  I'm for emphasizing God's love!  But I'm quite confident that putting us at the center of God's affections distorts what's happening at the cross.

A demonstration of God's love?  Absolutely.  But the cross also is a defense of God's justice.  According to Romans 3.21-26, God set Jesus forward as a propitiation (a sacrifice to satisfy God's just anger against sin) to demonstrate His righteousness.  Had God not dealt with sin at the cross, He could've been accused of being unjust.  As it is, He is both just and the justifier of the one who has confidence in Jesus.

I don't think we can preach enough about that.  I'm 1000% percent for preaching about the love of God.  But I'm also for preaching it in its context.  Jesus died displaying God's righteousness and demonstrating God's love.  In both cases, it's not about us but about Him.

But that's just me thinking thoughts...

1 comment:

  1. Looking forward to these articles. There is certainly more than a week's worth of material in this category.