Jesus: Not Your Average Substitute

[Hello Readers, I had something in my head and heart that I wanted to share with you today, but I just haven’t been able to get it into the right words. So, I hope you’ll find this updated post, originally published in October 2010, enriching for your spiritual life today. God bless, Lon]

The gospel tells us the good news of what Jesus did to redeem His followers and to restore them to fellowship with His Father. Today I wanted to remind myself, and you, of the means–the how–of that good news. He accomplished our redemption by taking our place, by replacing us.

Caravaggio's "Crowning with Thorns", 1607

[Caravaggio’s “Crowning with Thorns”, 1607]

He volunteered to sub for us.

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The Facts and Fictions About Christian Faith

Hello Friends,

Dawn and I have been visiting our daughter, Haley, in a place that rhymes with pants ;). In our absence we’d like to re-share a few posts from our archives on a theme that is very important to us:

What are the facts and fictions about Christian faith and how can I trust it?

In addition to the post below on the difference between faith and wishing, here are links to several other posts on this theme that we believe you will find helpful for better understanding Jesus, the Bible, and Christian faith. You can pick and choose, or bookmark this page to read each at your leisure. If something resonates with you be sure to leave a comment or question. We love to hear from you.

Thanks so much for being a loyal reader. Grace and peace to you.

  1. What Makes Faith “Christian?”
  2. Treating Prayer Like Magic
  3. Why WWJD Isn’t WJWD
  4. Is Christianity a Superstition?
  5. The Religion About a Relationship
  6. Crazy Stuff Christians Believe
  7. Knowing You Are a Christian

The Difference Between Faith and Wishing

During my early years as a young Christian, I gathered some wild ideas about faith. The first influencers in my young Christian life were the TV preachers of the late 70s – yeah, I know – and the pentecostal movement from which I first heard the gospel about Jesus (well, sort of anyway).

From these two influencers, I heard all sorts of things about the words faith and believe. I learned that if I truly believed I could heal people, or be healed, I could rebuke the devil, I could tear down strongholds (some of you non-pentecostal types are wondering what that means), I could speak God’s will about people’s lives, I could even “take dominion” over mosquitoes.

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Now What? — 8 Ways Easter Compels Us to Re-think Life

[this post takes 4-5 minutes to read, and 1 minute to share by pasting this link]

Good Friday has come and gone. Easter has come and gone.

Now what?

Well, that depends on your view of Easter. If you view Easter as a Christian metaphor about newness of life and hope for tomorrow, then you can pretty much go on as you were, trying to be a good person (or not) with your vague hopes for tomorrow.

Christ's Appearance to Mary Magdalene after the Resurrection, by Alexander Ivanov

[Christ’s Appearance to Mary Magdalene after the Resurrection, by Alexander Ivanov. Photo courtesy of Wikipedia.]

But if you believe that Jesus was literally, physically, permanently raised from death like Dawn and me then the resurrection can and should have huge life-changing implications for your tomorrow. And by life-changing, I mean both how God changes your life, and how you seek to change.

Here’s eight “Now what?” implications every new believer in Jesus’ resurrection should think about. This isn’t a to-do list, it’s a to-think-study-pray-about-what-it-all-means list. This will take a lifetime, so I recommend you get a Bible, find a church, and get started.

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