A Few Laws
Originally scheduled for August 18
In one way or another, various politicians have
pronounced that the United States is just a few laws away from
becoming a utopia. For those not familiar with the word, a utopia is
a society possessing perfect qualities. The politicians vary, of
course, on just what laws those might be. Some want to regulate
ecology, others economics. If politics won’t do it, we have the
options of religion and science and technology. Utopia dreaming can
be conservative, or liberal or just plain weird. It goes back as far
as Plato, and there are no signs of utopianism letting up.
The Christian view is that this is not going to
be successful. We live in a fallen world; each of us is a sinner. In
a sense, we had utopia in the Garden of Eden — well, Adam and Eve
had it. Being what we are, we ruined it quite promptly. That’s the
problem with utopia; as long as man is sinful, utopia won’t last.
It’s also a pretty good bet that utopia cannot be man-made; can you
make something perfect with imperfect implements?
The problem is sin; the answer is the Cross.
Only in the atonement of Christ do we have the cure for sin. That is
why we celebrate Communion. It is a reminder to us each and every
time we partake of the sacrifice our Lord made so that we might be
free from the curse of sin. It is by his body (the bread) and his
blood (the cup) that we are saved. It is therefore very fitting that
we should remember such a sacrifice.
Utopia? There is one specimen of utopia given
to us in the Scriptures. In passages in the Old Testament, but most
especially in the New Testament book of Revelation, we see described
for us the New Heaven, New Earth. This is the ultimate expression of
utopia. This one will work, because it is not man-made. God will
make this one; perfect implements making a perfect utopia.
When will this happen? When Christ returns, of
course. That is why we celebrate Communion “until he comes.”
Communion looks back to the sacrifice of Christ at the cross, but
also looks forward to the coming of the New Heaven, New Earth. We
take it not only in memory, but in anticipation.