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Discussion Forum : Articles and Sermons : Death is the Gateway to the Life of God by Zac Poonen

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Joined: 2002/12/11
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 Death is the Gateway to the Life of God by Zac Poonen

In 1 Corinthians 11, we are told to remember the Lord's death when we break bread. Jesus came and showed us by His life and by His teaching that “death is the gateway to the life of God” (See 2 Cor.4:10). So, it is good for us to meditate on every aspect of the death of Christ and understand more clearly what it means to share in that dying (eat the broken bread) and to be crucified with Christ.

One aspect of the death of Christ is that He took the blame on the cross for what He never did (“I am punished for what I never did and I have to restore what I never stole” (Psalms 69:4- Living). This was the exact opposite of what Adam did - who refused to take the blame for what he did do. He blamed his wife (Gen.3:12). These are two entirely different ways in which the children of Adam and the children of God walk.

Adam's children justify themselves like their father. “You are those who justify yourselves”, Jesus told the Pharisees (Luke 16:15). Adam could not see his own need or his own sin. He could only see the sin of another. When anyone blames others and sees nothing wrong in himself, he is actually in fellowship with Satan the Accuser.

The dying thief was saved, not just because he said, “Lord, remember me.” It was because he took the blame for his own sins before saying those words.

God doesn't need our help to judge others. He is quite capable of doing that all by Himself! He wants us to judge only ourselves. God calls us to do only one thing: “Acknowledge your own iniquity” (Jer.3:13). Such believers will be the happiest people in the world.

The Lord told the nation of Judah through Jeremiah, that they had not learnt any lessons for themselves from the failure of the northern kingdom of Israel (Jer.3:6-8). And then He said that Israel was better than Judah. Many Christian groups that have come out of dead denominations have not learnt a lesson from what God did to those dead denominations. Therefore, they have ended up as more Pharisaical and dead than those denominations.

Live in the presence of Jesus always, looking up to Him. This will lead to a life of constant self-judgment. And that is the way of all spiritual progress. This is not a message that you will hear in any church that you go to. So, you have to be a preacher to yourself. You must not be introspective - for that will lead to condemnation and discouragement. But look unto Jesus - and as you look at Him, you will see your own corruption, just like Isaiah and Job and John (on Patmos) saw. Then you can judge yourself.

I never look inside myself. I only look at Jesus constantly - at His perfect purity (as a man, tempted like me), His love and His humility. That keeps me aware of my need all the time.

SI Moderator - Greg Gordon

 2023/2/17 22:55Profile

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