“Roll the stone aside,” Jesus told them. But Martha said, “Lord, by now the smell will be terrible because he has been dead four days.” -John 11:39

What does it mean that Jesus died for us? In Church history, 6 theological approaches to this question have come to us. I will not dissect them here. But I will highlight a result that the early church martyrs embraced excitedly: we have already died.

By declaring Christ’s death for our own, we also declare Christ’s resurrection for our own. In faith we have already passed through death and heard the positive verdict of Judgement Day which leads to our resurrection into the Age to Come. All in advance.

The only thing left to do is remove the grave clothes of old, insufficient ways of living and the head cloth of old, insufficient ways of thinking; all which prevent me from experiencing my own freedom. But fear prevents me. What if I stink?

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