One of the ‘many’

In Matthew’s Gospel we read how after the Last Supper, Jesus took a cup of wine and told those present that His blood would be ‘shed for many for the remission of sins.’ What stands out to me in this phrase is the word ‘many,’ because many doesn’t mean ‘all.’

 There are those among us who claim that Jesus ‘died for our sins’ and that they are ‘washed clean in the blood of Jesus.’ I can’t help but get the impression that if I follow this line of thinking then sin in my life is no longer a problem because Jesus has already solved that problem.

Did Jesus die for my sins or did he die for the principles he expounded while he was alive? I seriously don’t think Jesus was given to us just to die for our sins. He told us he came to show us the way to the Father. The sermon on the mount, in essence, told us we must love one another and forgive one another (‘Blessed are the merciful’). He said He came that we should have life and He gave us the principles we needed to ‘live life to the fullest.’

The only prayer he gave us told us we need to ask the Father for forgiveness of our sins (Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us). If He was going to die for our sins, why should we have to ask the Father to forgive us?

Jesus wasn’t the superman messiah the Jewish people had been dreaming about for years. They wanted someone to free them from the Roman constraints they were suffering. Having a young unmarried girl become pregnant was not their idea of the grand entrance into the world of their Messiah. What they wanted did not add up to what they got.

 He spent three years proclaiming ‘the good news’ to all who would listen, irrespective of their race, creed or religion. The Jewish hierarchy didn’t like the following he was attracting. He was seen as a rebel and they felt he was usurping their authority. So, they decided to work with the Romans to get rid of him.

Perhaps we should spend more time listening and coming to understand more the principles Jesus died for, so we can become the people we were created to be. At the Transfiguration, the booming voice from heaven said “This is my Son, listen to him.”

Perhaps being unconcerned about sin might make life all seem too simple, if we think we are guaranteed a place in heaven, irrespective of what we might get up to down here. Personally, I would like to try and follow the way to the Father that Jesus was trying to show us and be included in the ‘MANY’ He spoke about.

I’m Peter Mack and that’s faith.

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