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Random thoughts on violence and redemption

The reality and vicious nature of human conflict can be extremely heart-breaking. It highlights our nature as depraved beings. It is easy for us to point fingers at others in their hour of such manifestation of violence and to marvel, privately priding in how we are not like them. Yet the fact is that we are all under the violent domain of sin. As long as we remain unchanged, we are its' captives.

On Good Friday Jesus the Son of God took upon Himself the violence of humanity. He endured the cross and despised its' shame. In the cross event, He reconciled humanity to God and has since been reconciling humanity to fellow humanity.

Yet it is not the violence of Good Friday that defines the Christian faith. Just because Jesus experienced human violence and suffering does not make Him our Savior nor does it offer hope for a world reeling under the weight of sin. It is the fact that after He had taken upon Himself all that violence and sin could bestow upon Him, He defeated their power by rising from the dead.

The vicious pain and gruesome images of Good Friday were contained and surpassed by the joy of Easter Sunday. Easter Sunday is the explanation for the existence of Christianity. Says Paul in 1 Cor. 15: 17, 20: "If Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless; you are still in your sins...but now Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who are asleep."

The fact of the resurrection of Christ is the reason for our hope and optimism in the face of daunting and disheartening circumstances. Because He lives we can face tomorrow with fresh vigor and vitality. Because Jesus lives we love and serve others even when we are not loved or served in return. Because Jesus lives we continue to reach out and to proclaim that He is the Hope of the world.

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