September 22, 2013
All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to Himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. 2 Corinthians 5:18-19
It was a good many years ago when a province of India revolted against England, and a war began between the two.
After one skirmish, several English officers were taken prisoner. Among them was one wounded, weak man by the name of Baird. One of the Indian rebels brought shackles to put on all the captives. When he came to put the fetters on Baird, a gray-haired English officer said, "You will surely not put chains on that man?" He was told: "I have just as many chains as I do prisoners. My orders are that all of the chains must all be worn."
"Put two sets of chains on me," the veteran replied.
To make a long story short, wounded Baird lived, while the other man, still wearing that double set of chains, died.
Now, if that noble officer had worn the chains of every prisoner; and if he had willingly passed up his own freedom to suffer in prison, and if he had refused to escape so he might die for his friends, you might have a poor example of what Christ has done for each of us.
Now I probably don't have to tell you that no human being would be physically or spiritually able to do such a thing for the entire world. Truth be told, our own sins are so ponderous and weighty we can't carry them on our own.
Knowing our weakness, the Lord in His grace, promised to send His Son into this world. Here, throughout His life, Jesus took care of and did all the things we could not.
By that I mean He fulfilled the laws we had broken; He rejected the temptations which had tormented us and, with His third-day resurrection from the dead, He conquered death itself. This the Savior did so that all who believe on Him as Lord and Savior would be freed from the shackles of sin, the devil, and grave.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, I give thanks that in the Person of my Savior I have seen Your grace given to humankind. May I not only see what Jesus has done, may I believe and share His blood-bought message of salvation with others. In His Name. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries