Paris. The first half of the 17th century. St. Vincent de Paul is running an orphanage and seeing to his duties before he is to have a meeting with some of the wealthier women of the city. He opens the front gate and is shocked.
There, in the snow, lays an abandoned infant. Quickly, he scoops up the baby and hurries him into the warmth and safety of the indoors, and to what he thought would be the warmth and safety of his meeting.
Holding the child before the women, he asks what should be done with this frail and helpless creature. One of the women suggests that perhaps God wants the baby to die as a punishment for the sins of the mother. Shocked again, as when he first found the baby, St. Vincent angrily replies, "When God wants dying done for sin, he sends his own son to do it!"
"When God wants dying done for sin, he sends his own son to do it." This is why Christians sing. This is our story. The Bible could not be clearer: God wants all people to live, not die. He wants them to have an abundant life here and life for all eternity with him in a place where there will never again be a tear cried, and where no one will ever again face death.
The freedom God grants men that allowed evil people to kill so many innocent on Sept. 11 is a mystery for which none of us have a full explanation. But we have seen a deeper mystery: The freedom of a God of love who would walk among his hurting creation.
Our ears echo and ring as out of the inexplicable depths comes the story of God's own son facing rejection, pain, weariness and death that true life would be made possible for all people of all nations and all times.
Amazing grace! Love beyond understanding! And the darker and more confused the screams of our time, the louder and clearer we who have received grace must shout the good news, "When God wants dying done for sin, he sends his own son to do it!"
Rick Cupp is the pastor at Kenai Fellowship Church in Kenai. Sunday Bible classes for all ages start at 10 a.m. Worship is at 11:15 a.m. Wednesday Bible classes and worship are at 7 p.m.
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