16 March 2007

2 Corinthians 4: We Have This Treasure in Jars of Clay

10 We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body.

11 For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus' sake, so that his life may be revealed in our mortal body.

12 So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you.”

In this season of Lent, we are particularly conscious of this death that is at work in us. We begin Lent by receiving ashes on our foreheads, the ancient sign of sorrow for sins. We are then admonished to “Turn away from sin and be faithful to the gospel” or reminded “Remember, oh man, that you are dust and unto dust you shall return”. The latter message reminds us of our own mortality; that our life comes from God. He has numbered our days, and we have no say about when we will be born or when we will die. Our spiritual life also comes from God, for none of us can come to Him without His grace. It is His life in us that makes us alive in Him. He is the treasure, and we are the jars of clay.

In turning away from sin to be faithful to the gospel, we also experience death. Maybe we have friends who lie, or gossip, or take the Lord’s name in vain, who act in selfishness and pride instead of in love, and maybe we do too. Maybe it would be so much easier to fall into sin, to act on selfish impulse, or in anger, or to lie instead of being honest, or whatever it may be that we struggle with. But as we become dead to these things, we become free to live the life of God, and allow Him to live more fully in us. As we resist the temptations to indulge our senses in the here and now, we take our vision away from the passing things of this earth that cannot bring us lasting happiness or fulfillment, and train our sights on the invisible God who is infinite and does not fail to satisfy.

18 "So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”


i love nemo said...

we experience death by turning away from sin. quite an interesting thought don't ya think? you would think you'd die if you turned toward sin, not away from it. but in reality, we do die when we turn to God. my theology teacher told my class that we "die with Christ, and are reborn again with him" i thought that was particularly interesting, because we are in the Lenten season.
so i guess all i'm really saying is that if we really want to live in the love of God, we gotta die!! doesn't that sound lovely? ya, i don't agree either. but we must "die" in not gossiping, swearing, or such.
so basically, LOVE GOD! then you can't go wrong!

Mountain Climber said...

Which is what Jesus commands. He knows that we can't fight against all our imperfections, so if we focus on growing in charity (love) then all else will fall into place. You will gossip less, you will swear less, you will be able to love more without jealousy because of the one who first loved and died for you.
In addition to dying with Christ, we also die to ourselves. Our desires to eat what we want, do what we want, etc. are placed before our desires for spiritual things (praying, going to Mass etc.) This is due to sin. So everytime we CHOSE to pray we are going against our natural desires, we are dying to those desires, and reshaping new desires in the order they were meant to be in--Spiritual and then natural.

Drew Bledsoe said...

Simply because Im not sure what else to say to the post itself I wanted to point out the name of the post. We have this treasure in jars of clay. I cant tell you how many times this is what God is for me. God seems so low key in school, public, life in general, yet He is so valuable and amazing. He is the injured man on the side of the road and so many people just drive past Him on the way to mortal happiness. I'm glad that we have at the very least acknowlegded that He is there and that He is the path to ETERNAL happiness. It kinda reminds me of Indiana Jones when they were picking the cup. The bad guy picked the most beautiful cup and died. Jones picked the least interesting cup and found the Holy Grail. We too need to stop focusing on our world and look for God.