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The Wages of Sin and the Gift of Life

Most of us would be aware of the Chris Watts story, a Colorado man who murdered his pregnant wife and two kids, Bella (4) and Cece(3). I was scrolling through my Youtube page when I came across a video depicting how the cursed house sat in legal limbo.

Several thoughts crossed my mind, the first one being the most obvious- ‘How could he?’

What Chris Did

To strangle one’s beloved once is one thing- but to kill three of them one after the other in a mad rage (was it rage?) is unthinkable. Not to be judgemental here, but it really makes one wonder, ‘How?

Human beings are indeed the most complicated creation of God. What goes on in a human mind, none can fathom, except his own creator. It is easy to dupe every other being on earth, but God sees the hidden intent of the human heart.

This story took me way back in time to reflect on the very first murder; the very first recorded death in the bible. Most of us think of it as the time Cain killed his own brother Abel. But, even before that, death of a different form had already entered the planet.

A Second Beginning

When Satan, in the form of a serpent, lured Eve to eat the fruit, there was more to be achieved than mere disobedience. That moment marked the beginning of a new human race, one to be preyed on by death and decay.

Such a great price for disobedience? Yes.

Disobedience equates to death throughout the bible. Be it Lot’s foolish wife who turned into a pillar of salt or the rebellious Israelites who wandered for 40 years never to see the promised land, the consequences of disobedience have never been awe-inspiring.

So Is God a Cruel Judge?

Throughout the old testament, the Israelites viewed God as holy and unapproachable. Any mistake was punished with plagues and diseases. A tooth for a tooth and an eye for an eye, hand for hand, and foot for foot (Deut 19:21) – this theme of revenge and retribution overrides the history of our spiritual ancestors.

Nevertheless, as our Father and our creator, He knows the best. Everything in the world that He created works on a set of laws, some like those in physics being more perceptible than the others. In his book, The Secret Kingdom, Pat Robertson, founder of the Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN) delves into the laws in operation. Every time we disobey or stray from the set laws, we die a certain death, some more insidious than the others.

Why Chris(+) Came- The Third Beginning

The Chris Watts story has no happy ending, at least not on earth. The house lies vacant with no eager buyers, thanks to all the dreaded memories that the place holds. Visitors? Yes, there are many who drive by, curious to see in person the place where it all started. But takers? None, as of now.

The house represents too much unfaithfulness, too much blood to be palatable for even the strongest of us all.

So, where lies our hope? In a world that’s getting darker and darker every day, God, Our Father, has promised to rise over us, to make His light shine through us. (Isaiah 60:2)

When Christ came, He marked a new beginning- a new birth. As the prototype of the new human race, ‘in Him was life and the life was the light of men.’ (John 1:4)

I can never get enough of the gospel of John, especially the very 1st chapter which mirrors the beginnings as outlined in the very 1st book of the bible- Genesis.

Jesus came to reconcile the world to their estranged Father. His own life was the only sacrifice that could appease the holy wrath of God against a sinful and rebellious generation. But, the good news didn’t stop there.

The reconciled human has to live a life on earth. The moment we are born again, we are not carried off to heaven in an instant rapture. Instead, we await His return in our human form, carrying out His will on earth as in heaven. As members of the family of God, we make our appeal to a dead and decaying world- shining as His lights on the mountain top (Mt 5:14)- as His ambassadors (2 Corin 5:20).

And how do we do it?

By Grace- the 2nd and the most important reason why Jesus came.

Things have never been easier. God was never more approachable, and His rest was never so accessible as it is now. The story of Chris Watts is nothing new under the sun. Horrors of a greater intensity have been committed on this planet- female foeticide to holocausts, entire communities have been wiped out in a moment of irrationality. None of us can claim never to have committed a single crime. Think of the people we might have slandered with our ‘holier-than-thou,’ sanctified mouths.

There is no one righteous, not even one. (Romans 3:10)

The Gift of Life

Our new life in Christ is a gift in all sense of the term. Everything is obtained by Grace. There is no strife, no envy, no headless pursuit of one’s worthiness as all that we humans could have required to lead a life holy and pleasing to God has already been accomplished in the Messiah. When He cried out from the cross, “It is finished,” the dominion of darkness over us believers was finished once and for all. Fear no longer grips us, neither does death threaten our being, cause we know we reign with our Father in heaven through eternity.

So who can now separate us from the love of God?

Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 8:38-39

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