Through Justification – We were deemed righteous.
Without fanfare, hoopla, and all the festive sounds of a celebration it came – our justification.
Life came in place of death. Previously we had no options, we were all dead men walking, but on that day everything changed.
Do you think anyone noticed, felt different, or made radical changes to their lives because of it. Yes, there were some dramatic moments. Some of which equaled any nail biting movie scene, for graves popped open and people came back to life. There was an earthquake, the sun went dark at midday, and the one that few would have been aware of, the curtain within the temple, thick and dense, ripped in two starting at the top and tearing all the way to the floor; in a sense exposing God openly to the world and the world to God.
Justified in God’s eyes. Paid for, and now free to choose. Prior to Christ’s death man had no choice. Instructions after the law came showed man how to momentarily alleviate guilt, but it brought no life.
Abram, he hoped for …
But what did he base his hope upon? God had showed himself to Abram in dreams and visions on several occassions. Apparently they were so explicit that Abram was able to relay what he saw at a later date.
Having had one of those moments I can remember thinking that I should write this down. I did not. Upon awakening I remembered little of what was said, only the concept that the end of my life was filled with great joy. Having lived another 32 years since that revelation I have experienced very brief punctuations of joy in a sorrow filled life.
Do I understand it all? No. What I do take away from all this is that there is something more; a promise of things to come, perhaps heaven, and that I have my hope in.
Abram had a promise of things to come and he hoped in those things. Apparently he remembered his.
Did he have the potential for sorrow and doubt? Yes.
Let’s ponder this for a moment. God hears his plea for a famiy, and yet it is many years before Issac is born. You really think that space in time did not get to him. When Sarai offers him Hagar, Abram seems to jump at the chance. He certainly did put up much of a fight.
Looking forward a few years later. Ishamael, the product of his relations with Hagar, has to be sent away almost as though he did not exist. Good, bad, or indifferent this is a son to Abram and a crushing blow.
Isaac comes along, and is now of an age where he can see the logic of what is happening and might even be able to put up a fight, and yet the boy becomes obedient, perhaps even submissive to the father’s will. Isaac may have even had an understanding of what was taking place. Unless God comes through this boy is about to become the sacrifice. Obviously God comes through, but make note you hear nothing of Sarah anymore until her death.
Sometimes it feels as though even if you can read about the love that God has toward us, that it is still just a mind game. How much less would this have been the case with Abraham. He had the same potential issues to deal with, and Satan was not going to let up on him any less than us.
Here is where we have a slight edge. Abraham had to believe that there was a reality to what he saw in the dreams and visions in order to obtain righteousness. A right standing with God. He had no life in himself; he was a dead man. Christ died for our sins, and rose again for our life, our justification. Therefore we are alive and righteous in God’s eyes. Paul makes clear that we have to believe that to be considered sons, adopted, and joint heirs with Christ, and a joint heir enjoys the same benefits as the heir does, right? Then if nothing else happens, heaven is my hope. There are other things that make me feel alive, kinda like writing this blog, or responding to the spirit when He tells me to speak.
I truly believe that there is a heaven, promised by Jesus himself, and that he invited all who will believe in him, a life with him and the Father.
What do you hope in?