Fugitives no more

Do you remember the 1993 action film The Fugitive?  Costing $44 million to make, it grossed over $360 million at the box office!  People loved this story.  A man wrongfully accused, on the run, trying to prove his innocence while being relentlessly pursued by the law.  Finally, he does prove his innocence and exposes those who were trying to silence him from telling the truth.   

It is interesting that God calls us fugitives Isaiah 45:20: “Gather together and come; assemble, you fugitives from the nations.” We are people who have escaped some sort of captivity.  Unlike the fugitive Harrison Ford played, you couldn’t call us innocent.  We had sinned against God.  We deserved the judgment of “guilty.”  We deserved to pay the penalty of our sin.  In general, we were captives to sin.  Here, the captivity God is talking about is one of ignorance.  We were once captive to the thinking of this world where gods carved by human hands are looked to for salvation they cannot provide.  This left us shackled to our sin and its consequences.  

I remember The Fugitive being a rather exhausting movie.  The main character is always running.  Always hiding.  He has to watch his every move.  He’s always so close to being captured again.  How close we come again and again to falling back into this captivity of ignorance.  We try to make people and things our saviors and gods, which they cannot be. As a new creation in Christ, we are constantly on the run from this captivity to our sinful flesh and the thinking of this world.    

But in God’s announcement here there is peace and rest.  He lets us know that we are not the only fugitives out there… and he provides a safe place for all of us to gather.  “In the LORD all the descendants of Israel will be found righteous…” (Isaiah 45:25).  We couldn’t go out and prove our innocence.  Now, we do not even need to prove our innocence.  In the LORD, the only God and Savior, we will be found righteous.

As we celebrate the first Sunday after Christmas, people will already be walking right back into the captivity of this world.  They will be looking for salvation in some peace and quiet and some gift returns.  They will be running away from Christmas like fugitives running from the law … trying to avoid another run in with the holiday craziness in a year’s time.  You, and your fellow fugitives from the captivity of this world, however, can remain captivated by the heart of Christmas … the proof of his righteousness for you.  You need not be on the run any longer.   


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