Daily Devotion – June 8, 2021 – Dr. Pat Taylor Ellison
2 Corinthians 5:6-10, (11-13), 14-17
5:6 So we are always confident; even though we know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord —
5:7 for we walk by faith, not by sight.
5:8 Yes, we do have confidence, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord.
5:9 So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him.
5:10 For all of us must appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each may receive recompense for what has been done in the body, whether good or evil.
5:11 Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we try to persuade others; but we ourselves are well known to God, and I hope that we are also well known to your consciences.
5:12 We are not commending ourselves to you again, but giving you an opportunity to boast about us, so that you may be able to answer those who boast in outward appearance and not in the heart.
5:13 For if we are beside ourselves, it is for God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you.
5:14 For the love of Christ urges us on, because we are convinced that one has died for all; therefore all have died.
5:15 And he died for all, so that those who live might live no longer for themselves, but for him who died and rose for them.
5:16 From now on, therefore, we regard no one from a human point of view; even though we once knew Christ from a human point of view, we know him no longer in that way.
5:17 So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new!
This section of Second Corinthians is complex – so I want to focus on only a few verses toward the end. Look at 5:15-17.
Jesus died for all (not for just us Lutherans, but for every human who ever was, is, or will be)!
Those of us alive now, because Jesus died for us, we no longer live for ourselves but for Jesus Christ, the Son of God. Our life here on Earth, complete with our families, our means of making a living, the world of nature and weather, and the places we inhabit, we are to live that life in those places FOR JESUS. We are working for him now. He is the boss. And not just a fine human man who is the boss. The Son of God.
So, through our baptisms, we are new creations, not simply mere humans going through life a step at a time, doing the things general humans do. We are doing those things while belonging to Jesus Christ. That means we are to always be working the mission: to make the Kingdom of God known to those who do not know it, or to those who have forgotten it. That is our called work.
How do you do that work each day? How do you honor Jesus as the boss? How do you respect the work Jesus has given to you? How do you make good on what Christ has given you through baptism? How do you live not just for yourself, as regular humans might, but for him by serving others?
Gracious God, Thank you for loving us. Thank you for giving us a holy calling, a simple job to occupy us every day. Help us not to forget that you are the boss. Help us to look for ways to accomplish your mission: to spread the news of your Kingdom. Amen.