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Second Wednesday in Lent Devotion

Willingness                                            Second Wednesday in Lent - February 24, 2021

For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly.For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. 10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. (Romans 5: 6-10)

LSB 420 – Christ, the Life of All the Living

(Verse 6 of this week’s hymn served as inspiration for today’s devotion.)

How far are you willing to go to help out another person? Caring and loving those around us, like our close family and friends, for most people, comes almost as second nature. It’s easy, risk free, to love those you are close to. On the other hand, how about to those that our outside our circles, the stranger, the outcast, or even our enemies. Might be a little harder. We may at times not even want to go there.

Verse 6 of today’s hymn reminds us, “Thou hast suffered great affliction and hast borne it patiently, even death by crucifixion, fully to atone for me; Thou didst choose to be tormented that my doom should be prevented…” Sin drives a wedge between God and His creation, us. In fact, scripture reminds us that in our sin, eternally separated from God, we are the ungodly. We are the stranger, the outcast, the enemy. How does God respond us? How does God care and love for us? Well, the answer is found only in Jesus and displayed on the cross. Patiently, Jesus suffered and carried our sins. He didn’t just carry our sin around in a backpack, stowing them away so that no one would ever see them. No, He bore each and everyone’s sin as He willing hung on a cross. On that cross He paid the price, He atoned for our sins. He chose to be tormented so that our doom, our eternal punishment, would be prevented.

We are created new in Christ. In Jesus, our relationship to God has been restored. In Jesus, we are family. Remember what 1 John 3:1-2 tells us, “See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. 2 Beloved, we are God's children now…” We are no longer the stranger, the outcast, the enemy…we are God’s children!

Prayer 

Heavenly Father, You love us with such a deep love that You willingly sacrificed your son, Jesus, so that we would be called Your children. Help us to live out your gospel of love and forgiveness as we love and care for those who are the strangers, the outcasts, and enemies. Remind us that Your mercies are new every morning. In Jesus name, Amen.

Rev. Nathan Ruback – Grace Lutheran Chapel