So today I read Revelation 1:4-8. It went fairly well as I came out on the other side with only two questions of uncertainty about the text. But if I were to pull one thing that stood out this morning--a place upon which to meditate--it would be verse 5b, "(Jesus Christ) loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood."
Freedom. What does that mean? He says that by His blood we have been set free from our sins. Way back in the beginning mankind chose self over God--imagine that. And the consequence of sin, or the self-life, was death. God's original design did not include dying; death, sickness, and perversion, all entered this world because of rebellion. But out of God's love for His creation, He had a plan of redemption.
I am coming to understand that you cannot have love without choice. God desires that we learn to love--both Him and others--with every ounce of our being. For us to choose love, we must have the option to not love; we cannot be robotic. So He gave us choice. And left to ourselves we will always choose the "me" life--what is best for me, what benefits me, what do I want, etc. In essence we are bound.
He displayed early on, in fact in the garden, that innocent blood must be shed to cover the guilty. This was a foreshadowing of what would come. Jesus was sent by the Father, a perfectly pure Son, to be the unblemished sacrifice for the sins of man...forever. His blood would free us from the penalty of sin--the bondage to self and consequential death. We just have to choose to accept the gift.
Jesus said, "If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." Then further down, "Whoever commits sin is a slave of sin...if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed." (John 8:31-32, 34, 36) Then in Galatians we read, "Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage." (5:1)
The work of Jesus on the cross has the power to free us from the bondage of sin, we simply have to believe. So my place of pondering today is, does my life show that I believe this to be true? Am I entangled with the self-life or do I allow Him to transform me and love through me, selflessly?
To read the when and why to my Revelation study, go to the blog entry entitled "Disclosure." http://unrehearsedadventure.blogspot.com/2009/09/disclosure.html