Jesus Christ Crucified and Raised
Pentecost 12A—August 31, 2014
“We All Need CPR”
Immanuel Lutheran Church, Bossier City, LA
INI + AMEN.
CPR. It’s important. It save lives. It’s important for health professionals to be sure. When I was an RA (Resident Assistant) at the Seminary for a year—which was awesome because my room was free that year—but anyway, when I was an RA I had to be certified in CPR. Now, it wasn’t the first time I’d learned CPR. I wasn’t certified the first time—I don’t think—but I did learn it in Boy Scouts for one maybe two merit badges. When I learned it at the Sem, though, it was different. I always used to remember seeing and learning all sorts of steps. Start with this many compressions, this many breaths, then this many compressions, and do that for X amount of time, and repeat. Pretty complex, and it’s pretty easy to get lost. I’m not sure if that’s completely right, but I know it was more difficult than what I learned at the Sem, which, I guess, is the new standard. At the Sem I learned hands-only CPR. You only do compressions, and you do it to the rhythm of—get this—Stayin’ Alive, or maybe, Another One Bites the Dust. CPR’s that simple. We all know the step.
Last week we talked about Jesus who is the Christ, the Son of the living God. He’s the One who’s died and risen and whose forgiving Word conquers the devil’s kingdom. But is it really that simple? Is it just the one step? Is that where our focus should remain? Is it that one focus? Or is there something else? Well, we need to take our cue from Jesus. “From then on Jesus began to show openly to His disciples that it is necessary that He go up to Jerusalem, that He suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, be killed, and be raised on the third day.” Certainly Jesus had hinted at this before. Even His name does: “The angel said to Joseph, ‘You will call His name JESUS for He will save His people from their sins.’” Jesus said to the paralytic, “Be of good cheer, son. Your sins are forgiven.” Forgiveness only comes by Jesus’ death and resurrection. Jesus also said, “For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.” But now even more openly he says this. His focus is on His cross, passion, and resurrection. His eyes are towards Jerusalem: towards cross, passion, and resurrection. If His focus is there, what shall ours be?
OUR FOCUS REMAINS, AS JESUS’ DOES, ON CROSS, PASSION, AND RESURRECTION JESUS.