Friday, March 30, 2018

Crabgrass and Life

Ultimate authority.  By human standards, ultimate authority is often expressed as the power to take life.  Be it waging war, condemning a criminal to death, vane attempts to use violence to control others, even making end of life decisions, it is often in the taking of life that authority reaches its climax.

I've been thinking about crabgrass recently.  One of my parishioners was a county extension agent and shared a story about an experiment conducted by his university.  Crabgrass.  Crabgrass has these pesky shoots, roots that spread far and wide, which are the bane to anyone who'd like to be rid of the crabgrass.  Try as you might, the roots continue to spring up new plants of crabgrass.  The University did an experiment.  They took a one inch piece of crabgrass root, and buried it twenty feet underground in the bottom of a pipe.  That one inch piece of root sent up a runner all the way back to the surface, and reemerged as a new plant.  Life persists against all odds.

A different kind of authority is related not to death, but to life, and herein we find God.  Try as we might to destroy, life persists.  Even crabgrass.

They buried him, the crucified one.  An exercise of human authority meant to be final.  Sealed the tomb with a stone.  All for naught.  Life persists.

An empty tomb.  A risen Lord.  And a solid declaration that the powers and principalities of this world will not have the final say.  The authority to take life is  overwhelmed by the Author of Life.

The resurrection is not an anomaly.  It is simply a sign that God's life giving authority is ultimate, and will conquer even death.  Not only for Jesus, but for us as well. 

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