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Gospel centred sermons, based on the lectionary often in advance.

Apr 10, 2012

Focus passage 1 John 1:1-2:2

We are all sinners but Jesus is the means by which God deals with our sin.

I came up with an illustration for this some time ago:

A child invites his friend to play cricket (or baseball) in the back yard. In many Australian back yards there is a household rule. You must keep the ball along the ground. You play. She or he hits the ball. A great shot and s/he hits it high and hard, too high and too hard. It smashes a window. What do the mum or dad do? What does the child who invited the friend do? What does the friend who's just broken the window do? The damage has to be repaired. It has to be paid for by someone. The parents would be justified in sending the friend away and demanding payment, but the child comes forward and begs, don't send my friend away, don't stop them coming here! S/he's my friend! Perhaps the Son pays, perhaps the Father pays, but in either case the friend is forgiven and is not sent away, and remains a friend of the parents and the child.

“...if anyone does sin, we have someone who pleads with the Father on our behalf—Jesus Christ, the righteous one. And Christ himself is the means by which our sins are forgiven, and not our sins only, but also the sins of everyone.” (1 John 2:1–2, GNB)

In my illustration Jesus is the child who pleads on our behalf, we are the friend and the the parents are the Father. I believe that some how in Jesus life, cross and resurrection, our sins, our broken windows are mended, the son and in some sense the Father pays the price of forgiveness. 

Questions for thought and discussion.

What do you make of the cross? What is the relationship between the cross and forgiveness? How do you respond to the notion that your broken windows have been mended, because of your friend Jesus?