By Skip Heitzig
The world looks at Christians celebrating death on Good Friday, and they can’t figure it out. They say, “That is so extreme! Why, before God could forgive people, would He require the death of His Son? Why wouldn’t He simply, benevolently, forgive people’s sin? If I did something against you, you would just forgive me. Why can’t God do that?”
But that kind of questioning betrays a sort of ignorance that is two-fold. One is of how heinous our sin is, and the other is of how great and holy our God is.
Nobody speaks of sin anymore. In fact, sin has almost disappeared from the American vocabulary. We speak of “problems” or “hangups” or “issues.” It’s called a “sickness” or it’s called someone else’s fault. But the Bible says very plainly that if we say we have no sin, we are liars (1 John 1:8).
How serious is it? Paul said, “The wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23). We sin because it’s our nature. “Through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all have sinned” (Romans 5:12). And we sin by choice. Every day we commit individual acts that are an affront to God.
They are an affront because God is absolutely holy. You see, holy God is wholly incompatible with sin and unrighteousness. “You are of purer eyes than to behold evil, and cannot look on wickedness” (Habakkuk 1:13). “Your iniquities have separated you from your God; and your sins have hidden His face from you” (Isaiah 59:2).
Perfect, holy God cannot coexist with sinful man. And because of that, we’re separated, we’re lost. So one of two things must happen. Either holy God must destroy unholiness, or holy God must declare that which is unholy, holy.
And that takes us to the cross. Jesus lived the perfect life that we could never live, and then took all our sins on Himself. So effectively, God said, “I’ll take the rap. I’ll take all of your wickedness and evil and I’ll put it on Myself so that when I die on the cross, it’s finished, once and for all.”
The cross is the only place that God will meet with mankind. The cross is the only place where both God’s mercy and God’s justice could meet. How can God be a God of love and a God of justice at the same time? How can holy, perfect God meet with sinful, rebellious man? Only at the cross. He came, He took our punishment, and then He declared you and me righteous because of it.
Copyright © 2011 by Connection Communications. All rights reserved.
Friday, April 22, 2011
Sunday, April 10, 2011
I am in love with this wedding shoot. All image credit goes to Liga Photography from the wedding planning website Style Me Pretty. What do you think bride-to-be?
I love the gowns, the avant -garde stylization of it all, and of course the use of vintage cameras as props... not the mention the beautiful use of light, the french meringues, the fabric pennants...okay pretty much everything!
Lately I have been listening to very poetic and meaningful songs, as you can tell by my playlist. I particularly love the song "After The Storm" by Mumford and Sons. It's on the playlist down below. The lyrics are amazing and really make me thing of heaven and what God has done for me. So lovely to think upon these things while listening to fantastic melodies and interludes. Here are the lyrics:
After the storm
I run and run as the rains come and I look up
I look up - on my knees and out of luck
I look up
The night has always pushed up day
You must know life to see decay
But I won't rot - I won't rot
Not this mind
Not this heart
I won't rot
And I took you by the hand and we stood tall
And remembered our own land
What we live for
But there will come a time you'll see
With no more tears and
Love will not break your heart
But dismiss you fears
Get over your hill and see
What you find there
With grace in your heart
And flowers in your hair
Now I cling to what I knew
I saw exactly what was true
But oh no more
That's why I hold
That's why I hold with all I have
Why I hold
And I won't die alone
And be left there
Well I guess I'll just go Home
God knows where
Because death is just so full
And man so small
Well I'm scared of what's behind
And what's before
Friday, April 8, 2011
"Up On A Mountain"
The Welcome Wagon
Up on a mountain our Lord is alone, without a family, friends, or a home. He cries who, who, who - will you stay with me? He cries oh, oh, oh - will you wait with Me?
Up on a mountain our Lord is afraid, carrying all the mistakes we have made. And He knew, knew, knew - it's a long way down. Do you know, know, know - it's a long way down?
Up in the heavens our Lord prays for you. He sent His spirit to carry us through. So it's true, true, true - that you're not alone. Do you know, know, know - He came all the way down?
So it's true, true, true - that you're not alone.
Do you know, know, know - he came all the way down?
By Skip Heitzig
By Skip Heitzig
Access to Christ the Redeemer was cut off last year. I’m talking about the famous landmark in Brazil that towers over the city of Rio de Janeiro. You’ve all seen pictures of it, a huge, 130-foot-tall statue of Jesus with arms outstretched on the top of a mountain. It’s been there since 1931, and two million tourists visit it annually. But last year Brazil experienced the heaviest rain in decades, resulting in landslides that blocked the roads leading to it. It took months to clear away the debris.
Back in the Garden of Eden, man’s access to God was cut off when Adam and Eve sinned. After that, man could only approach God through an elaborate system of sacrifices. Hebrews 9:22 reminds us that “without shedding of blood there is no remission” of sins.
But God had a permanent solution to the problem of sin, and that was to provide the sacrifice Himself. Jesus Christ, His only Son, took on all of our sins and died in our place. “For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God” (1 Peter 3:18). The sacrifice of Jesus cleared the way and provided our access to the Father. Using the analogy of the Christ the Redeemer landmark, it’s as though that statue leaned over and used its huge hands to scoop away the mud and debris on the roads so that people could come.
The word “redeem” means to “buy back.” In the Bible it speaks of someone going to a slave market and purchasing a slave in order to set him free. That’s what Jesus Christ did for us.
Jesus, our Redeemer, is my favorite subject. And that should be the emphasis of every believer and every church: Jesus Christ, crucified, risen from the dead, coming again. I like talking about Him so much because He saved me. He redeemed me by paying a debt that I could never pay. I owe so very much to Him, and so talking about Him is something I plan to do until my dying breath.
Somebody said that the reason people have trouble being obedient to Jesus Christ is they have trouble taking commands from a stranger. A lot of people know a lot about Jesus Christ, but they don’t know Him. They know His address, so to speak, but they’ve never personally come into contact with Him.
So come to Jesus Christ. He’s not a huge statue on a mountaintop or in a church. He’s the Son of God, who can take away the mud and debris in your life, your sin. Let Him be your Redeemer.
Tuesday, April 5, 2011
I really think that Save The Date requests set the tone for a wedding. These little cards are the first thing your guests see and the first thing that introduces them to you as a couple. Here are my save the dates of old, eh - they're okay. Although I did love them almost four years ago when I personally designed them myself. If I were to re-do them, they'd be much simpler, unique, etc.... but at the time they were pretty amazing (last names blurred for safety). Anyways..... the following pictures are more ideas for the dear bride to be! What do you think? Vote for your favorites! I am going to replicate whichever one wins for the happy couple!
Monday, April 4, 2011
I don't whats going on these days but I have found yet another GOLD MINE in my neck of the woods! Okay, not really my neck of the woods, more like the Old Hyde Park Village, but still. Am I on a roll or what? Forgive the cheesy bakery pun.... I don't if you are completely grasping the fact of the amazing-factor here. It's ADORABLE and oh so Pushing Daises! It's chalk full of charm, has tons of seating, and TONS of options menu wise. It's definitely on the uppity up, but your wallet is paying for atmosphere, alongside of quality, location, service, and flavor... not to mention personality and Eee-gads this place it bursting at the seams with it! You know that little clip from elf I posted about Lucky Day Emporium? There might be have been a re-run of that, I'm obviously easily swooned by furniture, charm, and decor. Plan to spend a crisp twenty for the two of you (it would be an adorable little date spot) and bring your laptops with - the free wifi is "wicked fast" according to the lady behind the counter. Anyways enough with the verbal epiphanies, let's see some picky pics!
Amelie's: A French Bakery
1633 W. Snow Ave Tampa, FL 33606
Mon: Thurs: 8:00am - 8:00am
Fri: Sat: 8:00a - 10:00am
Sun: 8:00 - 6:00am