Tuesday, August 21, 2007

He didn't die for "us;" He died for me

Generally when the NT talks about salvation, it speaks in corporate terms – we are saved, as a group, to be a people for God (e.g., Eph 1:3-4, 2:8-10, Rom 3:23-24, Rom 5:1, 1Pet 2:9, 1John 3:1). It’s popular to remind folks today that Christianity isn’t supposed to be individualistic, that we were created to be a community of faith, and I think that’s a message the American church needs to hear.

But then we read this: “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (Gal 2:20, emphasis mine).

Yes, Jesus died to redeem His bride and to form His church. But He also died to redeem me. It’s easy to get so caught up in the (post)modern push for community that we forget that it’s the hairs on my head that are numbered (1), that I am my beloved’s and He is mine.

I love the Church and the family of the Faith, but in the midst of remembering that we are a community, let’s not forget that we are each, individually, loved, that we were each called, by name, and that it was for my sins and for your sins, not “our” sins, that Christ endured the cross.

(1) Though, sadly, that’s an increasingly easy task.

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