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When Salvation Came on Board (published in The North Weld Herald 12/23/09)

posted Sep 7, 2013, 1:14 PM by Fccea Webmaster
VIPs and journalists comprised the passenger list for the maiden flight of a new airplane. Minutes after takeoff the captain welcomed everyone on-board and then continued: "We do have a couple of minor glitches. Those on the right may have noticed a lot of vibration in one engine, and there is an orange glow from the other -- a fire actually. But not to fear! We're maintaining speed and altitude with the left engines, so relax and enjoy the flight."

Ten minutes later he was back: "Ladies and gentlemen, a quick update. We are amazed how well the plane is operating given the loss of the engine that dropped off the left side a few minutes ago. We are a little concerned about the crack that has appeared along the middle aisle. Those of you with good eyesight may be able to spot the life raft we threw out a few minutes ago. We know you will be happy to know that your captain is carefully monitoring flight progress from that raft, so relax, sit back and enjoy the flight."

Not very comforting, is it? Chaos reigns and the captain has jumped ship. But what does that have to do with Christmas? Well -- Christmas is when exactly the opposite happened -- to the benefit of the whole human race.

Christmas is when the God -- who created the whole universe -- entered His own creation -- entered it as a participant. By means of the virgin birth, God Himself came on board the sinking ship of mankind to provide salvation. Jesus Himself said, "For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost." That was His mission and through His sinless life, sacrificial death and triumphant resurrection -- well, Mission Accomplished. That's what Christmas is all about.

But while salvation from sin is now available to anyone, it is only possessed by those who by faith have accepted the gift of Jesus' righteousness in exchange for their sin. The Bible says, "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." What we could never earn, merit, or accomplish on our own is available as a gift -- but a gift that requires our total commitment to a Lord who has given all for us.

We've all heard of the old circle dance song "The Hokey Pokey". It starts out, "You put your right foot in; You put your right foot out; You put your right foot in, And you shake it all about." A man named Larry LaPrise popularized the song and the dance in the early 1950s. Of course, the joke that made the rounds among the irreverent when he died in the mid-90s was that it was tough getting him into the coffin. They put his right foot in -- and, well, that's when the trouble started!

The point is, when it comes to a God who became one of us to save us, you can't be part in and part out. You can't be part committed and part not. You can't be in on Sunday and out on Monday. You've either submitted your life to the Lord Jesus Christ in total, or you haven't submitted to Him at all. There is no middle ground. Have you received Jesus? Is it Christmas in your heart yet? His love for us is absolute and unconditional. How about ours for Him?

Join us at the First Congregational Church of Eaton/Ault, corner of 2nd and Cheyenne, at 9:00 pm on Christmas Eve in a celebration of our Lord's incarnation.

By His Grace, Pastor Dave

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