And today - the rest of the 50 reasons - 26-50. May we be mindful of the gospel - may it enthrall us and let us know how sinful we are and how loved we are.
To Bring the OT Priesthood to an End and Become the Eternal High Priest: "Oh, how happy are those who draw near to God through Christ alone." As JD's message in sharing the gospel - Christianity is the only religion that is not spelled D-O, but is spelled D-O-N-E. We are not saved by bringing something to the table - we are saved by one who died on a cross and rose again.
To Free Us From the Futility of Our Ancestry: So much modern and popular psychology is based on this very thing - generational sins - or how bad were your parents?... I do think you can learn - but you can't blame. "When Jesus died, all the blessings of heaven were purchased for those who trust him. And when God blessed none can curse. Nor is any wound that was inflicted by a parent beyond the healing of Jesus. The healing ransom is called the precious blood of Christ. The word precious conveys infinite value. Therefore the ransom is infinitely liberating. No bondage can stand against it."
That We Might Die to Sin and Live to Righteousness: My favorite Christian fiction book is Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers. This bit reminds me of it: "Sin is like a prostitute that no longer looks beautiful. Therefore, the believer is dead to sin, no longer dominated by her attractions."
To Make His Cross the Ground of All Our Boasting: One of my fave John Piper's sermons was Boast Only in the Cross - preached at one of the Passion Days. "We are not as Christ-centered and cross-cherishing as we should be, because we do not ponder the truth that everything good, and everything bad that God turns for the good, was purchased by the sufferings of Christ."
To Give Marriage Its Deepest Meaning: "God's design for marriage in the Bible pictures the husband loving his wife the way Christ loves his people, and the wife responding to her husband the way Christ's people should respond to Him. That means that in God's mind marriage was designed in the beginning to display Christ's relationship to His people. Now we see that marriage is meant to make Christ's love for his people more visible to the world." I was talking about this the other day and said it was my biggest fear in getting married - that I would mess up the gospel to a lost and dying world. Oh, God help me in this area...even now.