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Greetings in Christ!

Another new month and we are looking at the beginning of Lent. A time when we reflect on the incredible love Jesus showed us at the cross. Think about it-he willingly allowed himself to be tortured to death-literally!

If that isn’t love, what is? Scripture tells us, “…I lay down my life for the sheep. And I have other sheep that are not of this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one shepherd.” Jesus gave up his life that we might live.

It is as simple as that. The wages of sin is death. Jesus never sinned, he was tempted, just as we are, but he NEVER sinned. I have a habit of sinning before I ever get out of bed in the morning, and he lived over 33 years and never sinned, not even once. He then accepted the wages of sin, and gave up his life in our place.

As we get ready for the Easter season, let’s remember that this is the culmination of a love story that began on Christmas. God the Father, gave us His Son, a dirty barn for his delivery room. Livestock for nurses and doctors. That Son, grew into a man. He proclaimed liberty to the oppressed and set the captives free. He told the established order of religion that it was just plain wrong, and loved those society said were unlovable. He marveled at those who were not of His faith, yet showed more faith than those that were (the Centurion, the woman who had discharge for 12 years that no one could cure, the Samaritan leper who remembered to thank Him). He raged at the religious elite who taught their laws were more important than what their scriptures taught them. In spite of it all, He loved all; not some; all; “Father forgive them, they know not what they do.” We have people like this in our society, but our job is to witness to these people, and to the society where these mistakes are, and love the people anyway. We are not God, it is not our job to pass judgement for the mistakes of others. Our job is hard enough as it is. We need to repent (which means to turn away) from our sins. We need to look at the mental patterns that we know will lead us to sin and we need to change those patterns. 2 Cor. 10:5 tells us, “We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ.” Recognize the pattern in your mind, take the thought captive to obey Christ, this is how we change, how we show true repentance, with God’s help.

 

Go with God,

Pastor RitchieBACK

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920-235-4430

email: zionlutheran@ntd.net

400 N Sawyer St, Oshkosh, WI 54902

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