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Extracting the Stinger
by Mary Alice McGinnis
There are a lot of sensitive subjects these days. But if people were to be completely candid, what do you think is the number one subject that makes them the most uneasy talking about? What one thing, universally, would people say makes them feel the most uncomfortable discussing?
We often try to insulate ourselves from it, avoid talking about it, gloss over it, or deflect it. We call it “passing away.” We hold “celebrations of life” rather than funerals. We dance around talking about death around our kids. Talking about it frankly may even be deemed as being morbid by some.
Delivering or receiving the message of a loved one’s death is one of the most excruciating experiences imaginable.
Receiving the news of our own inevitable prognosis, the certainty of death, is that much more agonizing. None of us will escape death, (unless of course Jesus returns first).
What is it about death that frightens us the most? What is death’s stinger?
Romans 6:23a says “The wages of sin is death.”
Isn’t that the crux or our underlying fear? Will we have to give an account for what we have done or not done with our lives?
Will we have done enough? Did our lives matter? Whom did we hurt? How did we offend, deny or betray God himself? When we stand before the God, the Ruler of all, the Master of the Universe, the one who knows all and sees all, will we measure up? What recompense will He demand of us? When the pages of our lives are flashed before the King of kings, how will we ever hope to pay the massive debt we owe?
This past week, my husband ran across this quote:
“The Easter story can be summed up in one sentence:
We owe a debt that we can never pay.
He paid a debt that He never owed.”
Paul gives us this sure and certain hope: “Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting? The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ."
Jesus paid it all!
Sing this prayer to God in praise for the One who paid your debt!