Romans 14:7-9 "None of us lives to himself, and none of us dies to himself. If we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord; so then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord's. For to this end Christ died and lived again, that he might be Lord both of the dead and of the living."
There is one question that seems to come up over and over again: Who’s in charge? It begins in childhood, children test their parents on a regular basis, and the question is who’s in charge, and what are the boundaries [or did no really mean No!] Children soon learn that parents are in charge, and though it make take some punishment, they learn to respect authority. But in a child’s mind, a baby-sitter is not a parent, so each baby-sitter is challenged, who’s in charge, and what are the limits. Teachers are like parents, at least from a child’s point of view, they have authority, although the boundaries are often checked. Substitute teachers are in the same category with baby-sitters, each must establish who’s in charge, and what are the boundaries. What are the boundaries? The dividing line between good and evil, between acceptable and unacceptable behavior, between what you may do, and what is not permitted.
Somehow we have gotten it into our heads, that it is fun to see what we can get away with doing. Somehow we have gotten it into our heads that we have a right to do what ever we want to do. Somehow we find ourselves under the devil’s control, because the devil is the one whispering these things into our ear, and once we listen, and follow him, we find ourselves in sin, and the devil won’t let go, he keeps us enslaved. And then these things aren’t fun any more, but the devil isn’t worried because by our sin, we have become his slave.
There is no way we can free ourselves, and God knew we would need help, God knew we would need to be set free, and so God sent his one and only Son, to pay the price to pay our debts. Jesus suffered and died, because that is the punishment we earn by our sin. Jesus paid our debts, forgave our sins, and set us free. God hopes that because of his love for us, that we will choose to follow him, and to permit him to be the Lord of our life. He has really good things in store for all who follow, but that’s not the reason. The reason he wants us to follow is because we know what our sins have earned, and we know the price God paid to set us free, and because either you follow Jesus, or you follow the devil, those are the only choices, and God wants us to follow Jesus.
The devil never paid anything to set us free. The devil never gave anyone a new life. The devil never forgave a single sin. I don’t know why anyone would choose to follow him, but people do.
And so I want to tell you a remarkable thing, Jesus suffered and died to pay for the sins of all. Jesus has paid the price to set all mankind free, from sin, from death, and even from the devil. Jesus purchased and won us by his holy precious blood, and by his innocent suffering and death, that we may be his, and live in his kingdom and serve him in everlasting righteousness innocence and blessedness. We are the Lord’s.
All this brings us back to the beginning. God is our father in heaven. Sometimes we may wonder who’s in charge, but we know the answer. God is in charge, and although things may not work out according to our wants and times, God has a larger plan, and they do work out in the end. Sometimes we may question the boundaries, but God is in charge, and he sets the boundaries, like a parent only perfect, with all power and all authority, it does not take much for God to remind us that we are not in control, and that he is.
Our lesson hold a wonderful promise, for it tells us that Jesus is Lord of all, some people may not follow him now, they rebel, and join forces with the devil. Never the less, Jesus still loves them, and would forgive them, should they repent. Jesus is Lord of all, even the devil will be subject to Jesus authority, even the devil will call Jesus, Lord of All, and along with the devil, so also will all the evil people who have followed the devil and find themselves in hell, they too will still say, that God is fair, and gracious, and Jesus is Lord of All, but it won’t get them out of hell.
Since Jesus has set us free from sin, from death, and from the devil, why should we ever return to the way that leads to death? Since Jesus has paid the price to give us a free and complete salvation, why would we ever, lay this precious and irreplaceable gift aside? Since Jesus is Lord of all, shall we not acknowledge him as Lord, and follow him, and receive with thanks the graces he showers upon the good and the evil every day? Shall we not also encourage all to turn from sin, and turn to their savior? This is the Christian life, for Christ is Lord of all.