Matt Friede, Guest Writer
“When everyone is moving towards depravity, no one seems to be moving, but if someone stops, he shows the others up who are rushing on, by acting as a fixed point.”
Blaise Pascal (1622-1662)
Christian, French Mathematician, Philosopher
If we focus only on the title, the idea of a fixed point could easily be plugged into any other worldview or opinions of the day. One could easily be a fixed point for an innumerable number of causes and points of view. You could be a fixed point for the environment, for animal rights, for any political view you agree with. For this blog post I am going off the fact that Pascal claimed to be a Christian and the he specifically chose the word “depravity” to describe that which a “fixed point” would be opposed too.
I have identified five characteristics of what one must have to be a fixed point against depravity. First, you must be a new man or woman. Secondly, you must have courage. Third, you must have endurance. Fourth, you must have hope. Finally, you must have love.
What does it mean to be a new man or woman?
We are going to answer this question by asking more questions.
Do you consider yourself to be a good person?
If you said yes, let me ask you a few more questions.
Have you ever lied?
What does that make you?
Have you ever stolen anything, regardless of the value?
Remember your answer to the last question!
What does that make you?
Have you ever committed adultery?
You may say no, but Jesus said that if we look with lust we commit adultery in our hearts. What does that make you?
Have you ever murdered?
You may so no, but Jesus says that if we have hatred in our heart against our brother we are guilty of murder.
These are four of the Ten Commandments. If you were to die right now and God were to judge you by the Ten Commandments would you be found innocent or guilty?
If you say guilty, what will God do with those who break His law?
Heaven or Hell?
Hell, you say, does that concern you? If you are concerned, I have great news. God sent His one and only begotten Son, He was born of a virgin, led a sinless life and was crucified for you sin and mine and on the third day He arose victorious over death.
If you said innocent, or not concerned over your eternal destination, I pray that God would convince you of your ultimate need of Him and provision for your sin and that He would have mercy on you before it’s too late!
If you have put your faith and trust in Jesus the angels in heaven are rejoicing as I am! Now you are a new man or woman. You are not a new man or woman by anything else other than the saving grace of Jesus Christ.
Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new (2 Corinthians 5:17).
I love this verse! It is a promise that if anyone, it does not matter, male or female, race, cultural upbringing, social-economic status, if you and I are saved by his marvelous grace then we are a new creature. God has taken our old life, the sin, the disobedience to His word, and through the miracle of salvation redeemed us.
We are no longer slaves to our sin.
We can be obedient to His word. That is us, we are new spiritually in Christ. It reminds me of all the home and car rehab shows. They start the show we see a broke down dilapidated home or car and by the end of the show what they have is a masterpiece. The house or the car are still the same age, but it has been redeemed and made new. From the outside it may look similar but the inside and what makes it unique has been transformed. The other thing, the house nor the car did any work. They were changed because someone saw their value and potential. Just like our Lord saw and loved us and gave everything for us to be saved because we are valued by the Creator. The other promise of this verse is that the old things are passed away. They have perished.
Those sins that you and I admitted to in the beginning of this post have been put to death and buried by Christ’s death on the cross. In Christ we will never have to bear the weight or suffer the penalty for those sins. NEVER!
What a freeing promise from our Savior.
So now what are we to do with newfound freedom from sin?
Be a fixed point!
For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them (Ephesians 2:10).
I believe that every trial and tribulation we go through God is using to mold us and make us to be more like His son Jesus. In the Greek the word, workmanship means a product, a thing that is made. We use products all the time. These products serve a purpose. You and I also have a purpose in Gods economy.
Though we are not finished products; He continues to shape, add to us, take away from us to make us useful for His purposes. To walk in these good works means we are to conduct our lives in a manner that good works are ever before us. We are to be occupied with these good works. Think about this before you were saved and before you were born God ordained and prepared good works for us to do. So, keep your eyes and ears open to and be available for these good works. Just a reminder good works are not always the big history making works we may or may never do. They are most likely the small unseen things we have opportunity to do every day.
Be a fixed point!
*Matt Friede is a Christian husband, father, and is employed in the automotive industry. He and his wife, Millicent, are very active in their church, Yates-Thagard Baptist Church. Matt and Millicent reside in central North Carolina with their three beautiful daughters.