Tom and I went to the early Easter service at church at 8:15. Most churches on St Simons don’t have a sunrise service because there is a community sunrise service at the pier at 7. That would be cool to attend, but it is also pretty early on a day when we have to work. So we went to the first service at Wesley. We sang my favorite Easter hymns and it was a wonderful service. As we were singing “Christ the Lord is Risen Today” I noticed a line in it that has stuck in my head every since, “Love’s redeeming work is done.”
I agree with the line in the context of the song. To say that “love’s redeeming work is done” in reference to the resurrection of Jesus Christ is perfectly acceptable. And Jesus is the only one that redeems – who buys us out of our slavery to sin. We cannot redeem ourselves. His redeeming work is done with the resurrection, but is ours?
One of the things I most appreciate about the United Methodist Church is the dual emphases on personal salvation and working to change the social order. We cannot pay attention to our own salvation by ignoring injustices in the world. We are constantly called to take our personal faith to a wider stage. It is in this context that I take issue with the statement, “love’s redeeming work is done.” I see too many “Christians” who think that because they are saved in a particular way, their work as Christians is done.
Love’s redeeming work is not done in our world. We have a responsibility to continue the redeeming work of Christ. Only Jesus Christ saves souls, but maybe we can make the world a more just place so that others can see his redeeming work. We still have plenty of work to do in the name of Christ’s love and we cannot put aside our calling as Christians to be involved in that work. What are you doing to continue the work of Christ?
Christ’s redeeming work is done in his resurrection. But ours begins and continues as long as we are alive.