The Gospel and Microsoft Security Essentials
We are content owners of a Dell laptop running Vista. It was a free hand-me-down from my mother, who upgraded to a new laptop running 7. In fact I am typing on the Vista machine right now. We are enthusiastic iMac owners, but we don't sniff at free. But I had to protect this machine from the villains of the world wide web. I don't really worry about the wild web with my Mac, but with this Vista machine, I need to focus on defense. In fact, I had a dream this morning about getting a computer virus that took over our computer. I felt powerless and subject to the whims of someone who only wanted to use me. I didn't like that feeling.
Back in reality, when I received this machine, I got rid of the paid security software and downloaded the free one from the maker of the software, Microsoft's Security Essentials. It and the software check for updates regularly and keep it protected from my enemies. The regular happy operation of this machine is dependent on those regular updates.
My machine's updates and my bad dream this morning got me thinking about Jesus and me. Jesus wrote my operating system. He created me. He also knows how to keep me running. But there are several competing, yet inferior, programs that, for a price, claim to do a better job than the creator at keeping us at our optimum ability and protected from those things that would slow us down, use us against our wishes, or even crash us. They might do a pretty good job, or not deliver at all. But you know how people are. Once they make a large investment in something, they rarely ever admit their mistake and tend to find it hard to believe that any other choice won't be another mistake. But the Gospel is so different from every other religious/spiritual product out there. It costs the end user, us, nothing. The creator bore the full cost of product development. He worked on it to his death, but rose back to life to prove his product really works.
Ultimately, there is no other product that can do something about the end of our life except the Gospel. Only the good news of Jesus Christ, the forgiveness of sins for an abundant and eternal life arrives complete. There are no beta versions or 2.0 updates. The manual was finished 2000 years ago. Reading the manual is important. Getting daily updates, via prayer, is important. I read this during breakfast, Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?--unless indeed you fail to meet the test! 2 Corinthians 13:5.
Malware creeps into our lives constantly. The good news of the grace of God, is what we need to be delivered from all that junk. No other product can deliver. No other product has been proven by resurrection from the dead. The best part of the resurrection is that we may die as windows machines, but we'll be raised up completely different, like Macs! Paul says this present body is corruptible, but we will be raised incorruptible, like my Mac. I'll let Paul have the last word, from 1 Corinthians 15, in King Jamesy English.
35But someone will say, "How are the dead raised up? And with what body do they come?"36Foolish one, what you sow is not made alive unless it dies.37And what you sow, you do not sow that body that shall be, but mere grain--perhaps wheat or some other grain.38But God gives it a body as He pleases, and to each seed its own body.39All flesh is not the same flesh, but there is one kind of flesh of men, another flesh of animals, another of fish, and another of birds.40There are also celestial bodies and terrestrial bodies; but the glory of the celestial is one, and the glory of the terrestrial is another.41There is one glory of the sun, another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars; for one star differs from another star in glory.42So also is the resurrection of the dead. The body is sown in corruption, it is raised in incorruption.43It is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness, it is raised in power.44It is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.45And so it is written, "The first man Adam became a living being." The last Adam became a life-giving spirit.46However, the spiritual is not first, but the natural, and afterward the spiritual.47The first man was of the earth, made of dust; the second Man is the Lord from heaven.48As was the man of dust, so also are those who are made of dust; and as is the heavenly Man, so also are those who are heavenly.49And as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly Man.50Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does corruption inherit incorruption.51Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed--52in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.53For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.54So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: "Death is swallowed up in victory."55"O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?"56The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law.57But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.