Sunday, April 16, 2017

Mark: our intercessor

Mark 14:26-49

This has got to be the second-most agonizing moment in Jesus's life.  Just knowing what he was about to do for all of his elect must have frightened our very human Jesus.  He knew that he would rise again from the dead and he knew he would live forever with the Father and all the people he saved in the Kingdom of the Lord some day, but first he will die on the cross and be forsaken by God the Father to take our punishment and replace it with his righteousness.

And before he does that he takes time to pray for all the believers - past, present, and future - who believe that their Redeemer lives and will intercede for them.  He also asks God if it is possible that he could save them another way.

But no, sin has to be punished, and a just God must punish sins.  Unless someone perfect dies in my place, I must suffer for eternity for my sins against an infinite God.  But God, in his mercy, sent his perfect Son to take my place because he could survive it.

There are two things that insult this loving gift from our God.
1) to say that we still need an intercessor between God and man other than Jesus.  We don't.  Jesus always lives before the Father and mediates between us and we need nobody else.  Nobody else died for my sin and I recognize no other husband for the Church.  We can come directly to him.

2) to say that Christ's sacrifice was divine child abuse.  Theological liberals say this.  The author of "The Shack" says this.  Even NT Wright, from what I understand, has said it.  People who say this don't understand the deity of Christ and don't know how loving our Lord is.  Christ laid his own life down for us.  He even said the he could have called down legions of angels to stop the guards from taking him to trial, but he didn't.  He went through with it.  To say that we don't need this to be saved, that this is merely an example for us, is outright blasphemy, and I question the salvation of anyone who says it.  There was nothing more loving God could have done for us and there is nothing we can do to save ourselves. Without him, we don't even want to be saved.

We need a substitute for our very serious sins if we ever hope to see God and it to be pleasant.  Come to our Lord, and he will change you.

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