When preparing for our Good Friday and Easter worship services last week I came across this story attributed to Quintus Horatius Flaccus, known as Horace in the English-speaking world.
Horace lived between 65 and 8BC. He was considered to be the leading Roman poet and playwright during the reign of Emperor Augustus.
At one point Horace became concerned about the direction Roman theatre was taking.
Plays had become pretty complicated affairs with several difficult and confusing, sometimes even contradictory, plots, themes, and characters. So it became customary that in the last act of the play, when it was impossible to reconcile the tangle of plots or characters and draw things to a suitable close, that the writer would simply introduce one of the gods to magically wrap up all the loose ends and bring the play to a suitable conclusion.
Horace disliked this predictable and anti-climatic practice, so he wrote to his younger contemporaries giving this interesting advice: “Do not put a god on the stage unless the problem is one that deserves a god to solve it.” Horace’s comment about Roman theatre reminds me of the problem of human sin.
The problem of sin was unable to be solved by humankind. All the animal sacrifices in the world were unable to make it right.
So the time came for God to bring God onto the human stage. Enter one Jesus of Nazareth.
But in the drama of human sin the only way God could fix the problem was for God to die. And so Jesus died. However Jesus’ resurrection on Easter Sunday shows us that Jesus’ life and His death was considered by God the Father to be a suitable and sufficient sacrifice and payment for the sin of all people for all time.
As a result those who follow Jesus receive the forgiveness He earned for us and enjoy a good relationship with God now. We also know that Jesus is with us at all times in our life now and we know that our new life with Jesus will continue on beyond our physical death forever.
Pastor Allan Wain
Ceduna Lutheran Parish