SLAVES we come into this world and slaves we shall leave, but not every kind of bounded slavery leads to hopelessness. We can be slaves to stimulation and boredom is our punishment. Or we are slaves to leisure and work is our penance. But, just the same, we can be slaves to service and our ‘punishment’ is blessing for the fact others are blessed. Or we might be bonded to telling the truth and so our ‘penance’ is peace.
It’s not a hard choice to become a slave for the good things for others in life.
Many non-believers are enslaved to the sins of greed, envy or addiction, etc., given that they see nothing wrong with those vices. They rather glory in those things than become subhuman and have to worship a ‘god’, as if a believer needs their crutch.
But the non-believer has no idea how far the Christian’s spiritual freedom extends.
The Christian is freed to growth; the fruit of their faith is sanctification via growth. But the non-Christian is hemmed in to the fruit of their denial, which breeds shame.
The Christian has a fruitful life welling up to eternal life, but the non-believer has a hard time avoiding death, for their fruit of shame is condemning on the one hand, yet their lack of guilt on the other hand is glaring.
The fruit of either life shows itself eventually. We would do very well to consider our payment in kind for the life we’ve lived is at one of two poles — and never the two shall meet.
Eternal life is a concept rich in our day let alone its richness beyond this life. But death in this life reveals to us the calamity that we know is now to come upon us.
On the one hand, the greatest hope for life is also a free ticket over the cusp of an eternal hell. Yet the other hand, a non-believer’s lack quickly overwhelms them.
The contrast between the free and wholesome grace of eternal life versus the imminence of death that sin’s deeds mete out is compelling.
Who chooses to forego a free gift of eternal life for a wage that pays mortally?
Lord, thank you that you made me free,
Thank you that you made me to be me,
Thank you that Christ set me free to live,
Thank you that he came here to give. AMEN.
© 2015 Steve Wickham.