Friday, December 03, 2021

Celebrating the wonder of Easter

By EMN Updated: Apr 19, 2014 11:27 pm

The victory of justice at Calvary

In the order of things in the universe, both at the level of creation (Physics), as well as morals (Metaphysics) Law comes before Power. The Law has to do with morals and power has to do with the execution of those morals. This means that before legal and political Powers were established, the Law was first given so that political powers can be guided by the law in the dispensation of God’s justice.
Now if man had evolved from a non-moral material object like a stone, the question of morals or the dispensation of justice would not be there. The question would not be there because man-the product of the inanimate stone-would be an amoral being needing no moral laws to guide him. But we know from the records of millenniums of human history that man is not an amoral being devoid of the knowledge of right and wrong.Coming to the story of creation in the Bible, The all powerful (Omnipotent) God could have used his power to create man like a machine designed and destined to obey his moral laws without questioning it. In the created realm too, a machine is designed by its creator (Man) to operate according to the wishes and purposes of the designer. For example a vehicle cannot refuse to start and operate once the ignition key is turned. The vehicle simply has no choice to say, “I am tired today, so don’t start me!” God could also have made us like machines if he wanted to do so. But on the contrary, the moral God of the universe created us with moral choices of either obeying his moral laws or breaking them. In creation then: Choice and not mechanics was used for our creation.
Now, as the Biblical creation and human history unfolds, man used his choice to disobey God’s moral laws and brought sin and death into the human race. What now can save man from breaking God’s just laws? What choice was there on the part of the creator to redeem his creation from death without compromising his own moral laws?
At Calvary, God and his own beloved son had two choices before them. One was through power. The other was through love. As for power, when those who would crucify him came to the garden of Gethsemane and Peter used his sword to defend Jesus, Jesus said: “Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my father and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels?” (A Roman legion at that time comprised of over five thousand soldiers) Just imagine over 60,000 angels in glittering ropes and swords descending on the garden of Gethsemane in the night. I am sure all those unruly mob and the soldiers would have fled in petrified fear! But Jesus did not choose the way of power to redeem us.
The other choice was of course the cold desolating choice of Calvary where he had to hang in total abandonment and pain crying: “My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?” (Mt. 27:46).
Had Jesus resorted to power at Getsemane, power would have triumphed. But if power had triumphed at the expense of justice, then justice would have been nullified and defeated. But at Calvary, God’s justice on evil was neither by-passed nor compromised. At Calvary the power of Jesus bowed before justice and took the judgment of justice upon himself. This act of love was done for our redemption. And this penalty for the transgression of the law was paid in blood- the blood of the only begotten son of God.
In conclusion, was the sacrifice offered for the penalty of sin guilty of any transgressions of the Law? No, he was the unblemished sacrificial Lamb of God who came to take away the sins of the world. (Jn. 1:29). Here, even the Roman authorities did not find any guilt in his person and washed their hands off guilt in hanging him. (Matt.27:24) The only guilt he was guilty of was- LOVE IN THE FIRST DEGREE. Thus both in the creation of man as well as in his redemption, God did not use the force of power but the embrace of his love.

Kaka D Iralu

Let us know the Creator

God is the Creator of the heavens and the earth. When there were no heavens and earth, God had planned to create the heavens and the earth. According to the word of God, God commanded the heavens and the earth to be formed, they were formed and came into existence. By His life, wisdom and power He created the heavens and the earth and all things in them. The universe was created by His word. So when the heavens and the earth were created, besides God there was nobody and nothing. So not a bit thing of the universe is created by any power besides God. The whole universe is created and existing by the life, wisdom and power of God alone. Human body, soul and spirit is created and existing by the eternal life, wisdom and power of God. Even a hair, a heart beat, a breathe in and out of the air, a twinkling of the eyes, a drop of dew are by the life, wisdom and power of God. All our needs for our sustenance are by His life, wisdom and power. Human beings live, die and will live in eternity by His life, wisdom and power alone. God created us, saved us and redeemed us by His life, wisdom and power. We are living and rejoicing in His life, wisdom and power. So we are filled with the wonderfulness of God and His praises.
Knowing the Creator is the greatest thing for human life. One who knows the true God will live according to his knowledge about God and a man who does not know God but have superstitious belief, he will live according to his superstitious belief. One who has great faith in the great God, he will live according to the great faith. True knowledge about God results in trusting in Him, fearing Him and obeying Him. The universe is existing by the life, wisdom and power of God alone and human beings cannot live God related life without having relationship with Him and relationship with Him is possible only by keeping the law of human ethics of relationship with God, “Know God, Believe in Him, Fear Him and obey Him.”
1. Why belittle God and the mind?
When the wonderfulness of the greatness of God cannot be described by human words, why worship pieces of stones, trees, hand made crafts, fire and certain animals? The whole universe is the expression of the wonderfulness of His life, wisdom and power and human beings have to lift up the heart unto God and worship Him and praise Him. Emboldenment can be received by calling on the Creator alone and not the creations.
2. Why born higher and lower?
The Potter made countless of earthen pots with the same clay. The pots are of different sizes and shapes but all are made of clay. From among the pots some ones claim being higher or lower but all are made by the Potter with same clay. So the question of born higher or lower does not arise.
3. The Creator alone is to be addressed.
When a natural calamity or any event of great tension is forecast, generally the people say, “Let the people pray to their own gods.” There is a Creator and Lord. He created the heavens and the earth and all things in them. The events are in His hand whether to allow them to happen or to stop. There are not many creators but one Creator and Lord. He is the Father of human family. So in any time whether at normal time or abnormal time the people should look up to Him and pray to Him. Seeking the true Creator together will bring the people closer to God and to one another. The Creator is our heavenly Father, Lord and Shepherd. So pray together to Him and Him only. He is the Creator of all and Lord and Power over all.
4. The commandments of the Creator of the heavens and the earth.
1. All things whatsoever you would that men should do to you, you even so to them.
2. Love your neighbour as yourself.
Naturally all human beings who have flesh and blood want love and kindness. All want god treatment. All want truth and honesty. All want to be helped in time of need. All want to be safe and secure. All want peace and joy and peaceful coexistence. All want honest guidance and advice in time of confusion. All want justice and due respect and honour. All want to be forgiven. All want encouragement.
If every body maintains ethical characteristics, good relationship will prevail. A man who does evil upon another, what he does is a violation of his ethical characteristics. He will be conscious that he does wrong and he does not want others do similar thing upon him and his relatives. Naturally a murderer says, “I have put a man to death but don’t put me to gallow.” If the law or human ethics of relationship is honoured and kept, there is no room to violate ethical characteristics. When the Creator of the heavens and the earth commanded human beings to love one another as loving self, any amount of sacrifice even up to giving life for the good of fellow human beings is not too great or too small, instead of destroying fellow human beings which is condemned by God and human beings.
Do not repay any one evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of every body. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with every one. Do not take revenge, my friend, but leave room for God’s wrath. For it is written, It is mine to avenge. I will repay, says the Lord. On contrary, If your enemy is hungry, feed him, If he is thirsty, give him some thing to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head. Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good (Rom 12:17-28). The love of God in us constrains us to do good for fellow human beings.
5. Character development
Educational and economic development should be with the objective of character development.
a. A church was split into two congregations which are in the same complex. Both congregations compete in weekly, monthly and yearly programmes for the progress of all spheres of Christian activities even in Bible studies, prayer and fasting between themselves. Both sides have developed in many ways but after decades of years their difference could not be settled amicably and no gesture of character development is seen so far.
b. Certain religions are ritual oriented religions and not for character development or improvement. The priests are not concerned about teaching the people with moral and spiritual value but are fully occupied with the task of distributing flower petals and smearing the foreheads of the devotees with paints.
c. In some villages though there are prominent preachers, boundary feud between the villages could not be settled for more than half-century.
The people all over the world have to draw the attention of the people to the knowledge about the Creator of the heavens and the earth. Unless the people come to know the Creator of the heavens and the earth, the problem of superstitious belief which enslaves the people cannot be resolved. Human ethics of relationship alone can have free access to all impenetrable areas to reach the people from ethical perspective.

Rev. L. Suohie Mhasi

By EMN Updated: Apr 19, 2014 11:27:59 pm