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Reflections on Reconciliation, Redemption, and the Resurrection
God who is Love, reconciled us to Himself.
Man is not the center. God does not exist for the sake of man. Man does not exist for his own sake.1 ‘Thou has created all things and for thy pleasure they are and were created.2
Love can forbear, and Love can forgive… but Love can never be reconciled to an unlovely object … He can never therefore be reconciled to your sin, because sin itself is incapable of being altered; but He may be reconciled to your person, because that may be restored.3
The cross is Jesus’ work of redemption.
He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.4
The central Christian belief is that Christ’s death has somehow put us right with God and given us a fresh start … Theories about Christ’s death are not Christianity: they are explanations about how it works …
We believe that the death of Christ is just the point in history at which something unimaginable from outside shows through into our world … You may ask what good it will be to us if we do not understand it. But that is easily answered. A man can eat his dinner without understanding exactly how food nourishes him. A man can accept what Christ has done without knowing how it works: indeed, he certainly would not know how it works until he has accepted it …
We are told that Christ was killed for us, that his death has washed out our sins, and that by dying He disabled death itself. That is the formula. That is Christianity. That is what has to be believed.5
The Resurrection is the standard of power in Christians’ lives.
That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;6
Now God designed the human machine to run on Himself. He Himself is the fuel our spirits were designed to burn, or the food our spirits were designed to feed on.
There is no other. That is why it is just no good asking God to make us happy in our own way without bothering about religion. God cannot give us a happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing.7
The more we get what we call ‘ourselves’ out of the way and let Him take us over, the more truly ourselves we become. There is so much of Him that millions and millions of ‘little Christs,’ all different, will still be too few to express Him fully.
I am not, in my natural state, nearly so much of a person as I like to believe. Most of what I call ‘me’ can be very easily explained. It is when I turn to Christ, when I give myself up to His Personality, that I begin to have a real personality of my own.
Submit to death, death of your ambitions and favorite wishes every day and death of your whole body in the end: submit with every fiber of your being, and you will find eternal life. Keep back nothing. Nothing that you have not given away will be really yours. Nothing in you that has not died will ever be raised from the dead. Look for yourself, and you will find in the long run only hatred, loneliness, despair, rage, ruin, and decay. But look for Christ and you will find Him, and with Him everything else thrown in.5
The whole point of three-dimensional life is to be played out in each of us. May this Eastertide bring us reconciliation to the truths of redemption and resurrection in Christ Jesus our Lord.
By Maryellen St. Cyr
1 C S Lewis, The Problem of Pain, 40.
2 Revelation 4:11
3 Thomas Traherne, Centuries of Meditations, 11, 30.
4 Romans 4:25.
5 C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity, 54-55.
6 Philippians 3:107
7 C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity, 50.
8 Ibid., 225-227.
Image: Luca Giordano, *Resurrection“, oil on canvas, Courtesy of Residenzgalerie Salzburg, PDM and US Public Domain