Daily Office Readings for Saturday of Proper 7: Year 2
“But if we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him. The death he died, he died to sin, once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God. So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.” (Romans 6: 8 – 11)
I have always believed, even before going to seminary, that the most serious service a clergy person could facilitate, second only to baptism, is the funeral or burial service. Death is the ultimate transition of life. Not all will submit to baptism, but all of us will submit to death.
Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ walked among us to be the Gateway into eternal life with God. I believe also that every human being will be raised to judgment before our Creator. How we have behaved during our dash-time (that time between birth and death) is important so far as it reflects what is in our hearts, but it is the actual content of our hearts that makes the difference. God looks upon the heart. Do you have love in your heart? Jesus instructs us to love others as he loves us.
We don’t have to worry about our conduct if we vow to always behave from the “love of other” perspective. It would make no difference whether we were police, medical, military, clergy or corrections officer; doing our vocations from loving others as Christ loves us is pleasing to God and eases our transition through ultimate judgment. Love for the other then makes us dead to sin. Sin is that which separates us from the will of God. This is why Paul says that we all must consider ourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.
Let us hear what the Spirit is saying to and through the saints of God and then ponder anew what the Almighty can do. John