Monday, April 13, 2009

Uh. . .You're In the Wrong Place

Luke is the only writer of one of the Gospel's that records the following exchange on the morning that Jesus rose from the dead

"But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they (the women) went to the tomb, take the spices they had prepared. And they found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they went in they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were perplexed about this, behold two men stood by them in dazzling apparel. And as they were frightened and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, "Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen" (Luke 24:1-6).

This is one of my favorite scenes in the entirety of Scripture, because it's a question that I have to ask myself. See, here's the thing: there's something about me that wants to keep going back to the graveyard of my sin over and over again. I don't know what it is. I've confessed it, repented of it, it's been forgiven, and yet I find myself going back to the tomb where my old self was buried again and again. It's as if I'm drawn to the putrid smell of death and decay that characterized my life apart from Christ. It's like I want to put on the grave clothes, caked with the blood of guilt and shame, to see if they still fit. It's almost as if I've gotten confused and begun thinking that because it holds so many memories the tomb is still my home, the place where I'll be forced to spend the rest of my life.

And each time I go there, I can hear the Savior asking, "Jason, why do you seek the living among the dead? I'm no longer here, and so therefore you're no longer here. These sins, this guilt, this stentch of death. . .it's not who you are anymore. Yes, you once were dead, but I rose so that you could be made alive in me. This is not your home. This is not your identity anymore. Why do you keep coming back here? Let it be finally enough. Let my resurrection, my defeat of all your sin, my gift of righteousness and new life be sufficient this time. Live in it. It's who you are now. You won't find yourself here. This is a place for dead people, in the bondage of sin. Not people like you who are fully alive and totally free."

I gotta keep hearing this question!

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