Sunday, December 29, 2013

The Culture of Death

The skull and cross–bones of the pirate flag flies over this world. Beneath its flapping exists populations devoted to death. For some reason, that which the heart fears is made into a badge of bravado. In a religious context it is celebrated as the ultimate aim of devotion by Jihadists of Islam infamy, to kill and or be killed in the attempt. To them and their passive supporters the god they follow breeds the culture of death. On a less dramatic religious note, those who bow before the god of Evolution follow a similar path.

Survival of the fittest comes through struggle, conquest and ultimately death. There isn’t any meaning, only the final destination of dying. This religious explanation of existence called life elevates death above life and dismisses and idea of accountability to a Holy and Eternal Creator God. The sway this view holds is seen in the growing support for abortions, euthanasia, prescriptive suicide and so called ‘mercy–killings.

Add to the above the insane attitude of people towards living. Death comes in horrible ways to those who smoke, abuse alcohol, drugs and engage in sexual immorality is merely shrugged off. They gamble their being for some physical stimulus and become addicted to dying by degrees.

“Why will you die?” was the question the Creator God asked within the Bible. He offered life by breaking the power of Death’s culture but so few responded. The verdict of the Bible is that Jesus came into this world to bring an alternative to death. He came to bring life, abundant and vibrant. His flag over His community is an empty tomb and a beautiful Dove in flight. It is the banner of victory and hope. In Christ Jesus, death’s culture has been nullified by Christ’s resurrection. Hopelessness is replaced by the presence of God’s Spirit within and symbolised by the Dove.

The outworking of Jesus’ abundant, indwelling life is seen in many and varied ways. Reaching out to the orphaned and caring for the sick, infirm, unwanted and deformed are expressions of this life. Rejecting ‘Karma’ and enduring the unendurable by trusting in the goodness of Jesus Christ is the power of Life. Why is it that followers of Christ will pray for those persecuting them, will feed those who seek to destroy them and forgive their oppressors? Because of the indwelling life of Christ who lived out what He taught and empowers His people to follow His teachings! Does this mean those in the culture of death are grateful or converted? Not always. But what is shown is that death can be swallowed up in Life.
There are many facets to the coming of Jesus Christ into this world. (I’ve tried to explain some in my books ‘Bethlehem’s Warrior Baby’ and ‘Captured by Calvary’) One of them is to offer you a new outlook on life, a new culture in the heart and a new destiny. It is called ‘Life Abundant’. It is eternal. It is a gift, for Jesus Christ paid its price. It is waiting for you to receive it through a commitment of your life to Christ by faithful obedience to Him. Why? Because He is Life abundant and without Him there is only the hopelessness of a culture of death in time and eternity.

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