Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Remembering Our Slavery in Egypt

One of the greatest challenges for those of us who have been believers for a while is to think back on what life was like before we came to faith. The OT law asked the Hebrews to remember regularly all that God had done in their national and personal life so that they would not forget the gracious works of God in their lives. This was God's intent with the whole system of regular festivals - to celebrate and remember God's mighty works on their behalf. The Lord's Supper is built into our Christian faith for the same purpose - to remember God's work in our lives through Christ. Jesus himself tells us to take up the cup and the bread "in remembrance of me." Why would we need a regular way to remember the work of Jesus on our behalf? Because we tend to forget. We are a forgetful people. We quickly begin to think that we deserve the blessings of God on our lives and that we somehow earned our status with the Father. Neither of these assessments of our condition are accurate. We don't deserve what God has given and we couldn't have earned it even if we tried (all by grace).

What's the big deal with remembering this, you might ask? Well, it directly impacts the way we treat those without Christ - either with compassion and grace (because we know what it is like to be without Christ ourselves) or with contempt and judgment (because we forget). So, as God tells the people of Israel in Deuteronomy 24.22 after he tells them to have mercy on the widow, the orphan, and the foreigner in their midst,

"Remember that you were slaves in Egypt. This is why I command you to do this."

1 comment:

Brent said...

I blogged about your church kick off this weekend (see my Sept. 8 entry). I know you're busy, but trust I've been praying for HCBC (rr-n!) and you two specifically.

I'm thankful to have the chance to pray for your first Sunday. I know you're excited, and I'm excited for you.