“I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”
Quick summary: Modern society has dethroned God and enthroned self. Our culture has abandoned long-established moral standards, thrown off restraint, and now encourages people to seek fulfillment, identity, and self-expression in their deeply felt preferences and passions, no matter how bizarre. The consequence is that what was once unthinkable has become not just acceptable, but socially promoted and legally protected.
The self and its passions reign supreme in our generation.
However, the reality is that there is a moral structure to the universe, and it was created by God. The Lord created the physical laws that govern the physical world, and he created the spiritual laws that govern the spiritual world. The created world thus bears the stamp of God’s design, and it is every person’s responsibility to recognize, respond, and align with the design of the Creator.
This means that man’s purpose, meaning, and fulfillment are found not in pursuit of deeply felt preferences and passions, but in relationship to God the Creator and Redeemer. In vivid contrast to modern culture’s gratification of self and its passions, Jesus calls us to the denial of self.
“Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul?” (Matthew 16.24-26)
To put it in Taylor’s terms, scripture communicates a mimetic view of the world. The Lord created the world with order, design, and meaning, and it is every person’s responsibility to see that design and align themselves with it.
Paul says it this way in Romans: “For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made.” (Romans 1.19-20)
The Lord has revealed himself in the created world. The Lord has revealed himself in scripture. The Lord has revealed himself in the person and work of Jesus the Messiah. It is our responsibility to recognize his creative signature in the world. Most importantly, it is our responsibility to recognize and respond to what the Lord has done for us through the death and resurrection of Christ, and to do the faith-work of aligning our lives with his design for our lives.
Only there will we find the answers to the great questions of life.
“If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.” (Colossians 3.1-3)
The Lord is calling.