Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Living into the Resurrection

This Sunday's epistle lesson (Colossians 3:1-11) urges us to set our minds on things above and not dwell on earthly matters. Why? Because we have already died and have been raised with Christ. Funny enough, I seem to have forgotten that.

As a Christian, I often confuse heaven with the kingdom of God. It's easy for me to think that the goal of this life is to leave it--to live each day with heaven in my sights. What's the point of all of this? Leaving it behind in favor of something even better. That might be true for gnostics and televangelists, but it's not true to the gospel.

We have already died. We have already been raised. We are already with Christ in the presence of God. But that's easy to forget because, as Paul writes, it's hidden from us. So how do we make it real? By living as if it already is.

We must not set our minds on earthly things and instead live into the resurrection. Otherwise, Easter is just a fairytale. What makes it real? Living as if Easter has already made a difference. As Christians, the power of the resurrection is as real for us now as it will ever be. Our lives here on earth our not an accident. Otherwise, God would have taken all of us up into heaven when Jesus disappeared into the clouds. But that's not the way it works. That's not Christianity.

We are forgiven. We are redeemed. We have died to sin and death and all that stands in between us and God. We have been raised to the life of the resurrection--not some day but now. When we lose ourselves in the matters of this world, we deny the power of Easter. So, are we Christians or not?

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