From: Pastor Bill Mugnolo HARP Pastoral Advisor
“A Word for this Week”: March 6-12, 2017: “Christianity” … John 3:14-15
In our most Holy Faith, we believe—as we express in our creeds—in one God in whom there are three co-equal persons—the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. We, therefore, speak of our God as the Triune God or the Holy Trinity.
But as great as the work of the Father is in both creating us and then sustaining us in our physical being, we don’t refer to our faith as “Fatheranity”. Then, the Holy Spirit’s work in bringing us to faith, keeping us in it, and empowering us to share it is surely wonderful. Still, we don’t refer to our faith as “Spiritanity”.
It is because of the work of that second person, Jesus Christ, in coming to earth to live and dwell among us (John 1:14) that we call our faith Christianity. We are very much reminded of this in the chief symbol that we, both on the inside and the outside of our churches, use which points to our faith. It is not a wooden crib—which would certainly point us back to when He entered our world in the flesh. Nor is it a wooden boat—which would point us to the vessel from which Jesus so often preached and taught while He was at the Sea of Galilee. Our chief symbol reminds us of the wooden cross where Jesus gave His very life for your sins, my sins, and for the sins of the world.
This work of Jesus Christ that He did upon the cross, which was followed by His glorious resurrection, is the very essence—the heart and soul of what we believe, teach, and confess in Christianity. We focus upon this as our “bottom line” whenever we gather for worship and Bible study. But by a long esteemed tradition, we give special attention to the events of Jesus’ suffering and death during the forty day long season that is known as Lent.
In this year of Our Lord, 2017, we are observing Lent from early March until mid April. In many churches, there are special midweek services held so that we can focus especially upon what led Jesus to take up Calvary’s cross both for you and for me. There are also daily devotions written for Lent. May this season point you further towards the Christ who was once “lifted up” for you (John 3:14-15).