This is the day I turn my body over to the Lord Jesus Christ
Of course most Christians would pronounce the same words without thinking of the impact to the meaning. Not very many would dream of following Jesus to the cross to be sacrificed for anyone else let alone their own flesh and blood.
Yet, the sense of giving ourselves in a complete offering to something can become a frightening act reserved for masochists or martyrs. The conscious act of placing ourselves at the hands of torturous elements will place our being at the mercy of others for satisfaction of an unjust entity. Our scriptures relate many dozens of brave souls accepting the condemnation by evil men to hand over their souls to God through vicious unjust decisions. St. Stephen, St. Paul, St. Joan of Arc, and the list goes on quickly sending many directly into the arms of Christ.
Consider the average person who won’t be stoned or beheaded to meet an ungodly philosophy that still will be challenged almost daily in a world of evil intentions. The manner of sin and its proponents constantly present to all of us the opportunity to accept these attractions or place our integrity at the hands of evil spirits wanting to tie us up and burn our righteousness at the stake of rejection of God. We won't go to the tortuous hands of an assassin but certainly will present to God a choice we will make to walk away from grace.
Perhaps the most strenuous decision any of us must choose is avoiding sin even in its smallest adherence of indiscretion without fighting the results of turning away from Christ’s protection. That protective essence is covered through prayer, but especially through trust in his standing as a guard against the evil about to attack our souls. That trust is always our endless faith that becomes a protective shield called the Holy Spirit who will guide us away from the battlefield of Satanic influence.
As Paul said; “For our struggle is not with flesh and blood but with the principalities, with the powers, with the world rulers of this present darkness, with the evil spirits in the heavens.” (Eph 6: 12). This was written around 80 to 100 AD, and yet is a perfect description of 2023 and what we are facing in today’s governing factors of leadership. The unruly factions in our present governing entities is in fact the powerful indoctrination of the spirits Paul was referring to. We are not too far from repeating the very evils of the past; thousands of years ago.
Turning our body over to Christ does not mean throwing our flesh and blood to tortuous means, but our will and the sacramental essence of our souls that was secured through the Crucifixion of Jesus and his Resurrection. Placing all of our belief that all sin was paid for and we are, through the Church, now one of his children free from eternal death and walking the road of redemption. With all of that, the protection from sin is possible when we believe in his Word and trust in his protection by the Holy Spirit’s guidance.
Becoming an evangelizer, spreading not only the gospel, but the very essence of a love that cannot be duplicated except through the divinity of God which is given to each of us to carry on and touch every hungry soul. The challenge is handed to all of us; the chosen of God.
Ralph B. Hathaway