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Monday, September 29, 2014

The Fall as Prelude

In an earlier blog (click here) I discussed a remarkable thing. The story of the fall in Genesis paints man as irresponsible – not accepting responsibility for his actions. Yet we must understand that by this very story mankind accepted responsibility. It says in effect we ourselves are to blame  for our fallen state--much as if I were to tell you a story in which I portrayed myself as culpable.

Exercising conditional love, God in the image of man expels the perpetrators from the garden. Jesus by fully portraying the Creator reveals the unconditional nature of God's love. God loves us despite our sin. The only issue that remains is for us to truly love unconditionally ourselves. Any honest person not in a state of denial is fully aware of a multiplicity of personal foibles. Logic leads to the inevitable conclusion that we are therefore unlovable. But God is not imprisoned by logic. Like a parent looking upon a newborn baby, love for the child is unconditional at the outset. For man to love himself, he must accept the unconditional love of God for him. The key that unlocks love and hence forgiveness of self is confession and belief in Jesus. Confession is simply another way of saying that the reign of denial has ended. Accepting Christ's death as a powerful symbol of the reality of God's unconditional love for us opens the door for us to love ourselves and thus to forgive ourselves.

This graceful yet realistic aspect of Christianity is an essential contributing factor that makes it an enduring religion meeting the needs of mankind generation after generation.  

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