Loving Those For Whom Christ Died

At church this morning, the pastor preached about Zaccheus.  Zaccheus was a hated tax collector in Luke 19, but he wanted to see Jesus, and he climbed up a tree to do so because he was small in size.  Jesus offered to come to Zaccheus’ house, and Zaccheus then resolved to change his life, paying back those he defrauded and giving to the poor.

The pastor said that, even though Zaccheus had done bad things and was hated, Jesus loved him and would die for him.  That’s actually a profound statement: that Jesus was willing to die for people who did wrong.  Trite?  Well, perhaps, yet profound.  Suppose that I saw people—-even those I dislike because of how they have treated me—-as people who are loved by Jesus, people for whom Jesus died.

Of course, this can change my attitude today.  But playing mind-tricks (in this case, telling myself religious concepts) in an attempt to change my attitude in a lasting way is a lot more difficult.

About jamesbradfordpate

My name is James Pate. This blog is about my journey. I read books. I watch movies and TV shows. I go to church. I try to find meaning. And, when I can’t do that, I just talk about stuff that I find interesting. I have degrees in fields of religious studies. I have an M.Phil. in the History of Biblical Interpretation from Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio. I also have an M.A. in Hebrew Bible from Jewish Theological Seminary, an M.Div. from Harvard Divinity School, and a B.A. from DePauw University.
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4 Responses to Loving Those For Whom Christ Died

  1. lotharson says:

    Yeah, but who are those for whom Jesus died? This the heart of Calvinism which I am currently adressing: http://lotharlorraine.wordpress.com/category/calvinism/

    Cheers from Europe.


  2. jamesbradfordpate says:

    I was asking myself that too when I was listening to the sermon. My church is Presbyterian. We’re Calvinist, right? Yet, my pastor was saying that Christ died for all people.


  3. lotharson says:

    You’re most welcome to give me your opinion on my ongoing posts, then :=)


  4. jamesbradfordpate says:

    I’m reading one of them now. Not much disagreement from me! It does somewhat intrigue me that you came across a Calvinist Zionist. Many of the Calvinists I know are into replacement theology!


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