I've been reading Romans now, it is really a loaded book that I should slow down to capture its depth. But anyways, whether you read slowly and contemplate or read multiple times either way you will learn lessons from the Lord. The latter was how I came to my lesson this week. I have repeatedly read and probably memorized in Sunday school Romans 6:23 - "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." The thing is, I've read this verse by itself for the most part. Now that I've read it in its context, the theme of working and earnings is more clear. You live your life and work for sin apart from God and you get paid your wages in death. Eternal life on the other hand isn't a wage you receive because you can't work for it, you'd never earn it. It is a gift and it is through Jesus and his sacrifice.
I was watching on the Passionate Eye a show called, "I shoudln't be alive". It followed the true story of a man who went skydiving with his friends in Costa Rica when their plane started to go down, they jumped out. He landed in the middle of the ocean and saw the plane crash and sink behind him. He couldn't see any of his friends. He freed himself from his parachute and floated in the ocean. Night fell and still no sign of people, he thought he was going to die and was so alone. Then, at night, he swam into a school of jellyfish that stung him repeatedly. What luck! He was rescued the next day the sole-survivor of the crash. Sad story of a near-death experience. What I thought when I was watching this though was getting stung by jellyfish and then ocean water on the wounds is like hell, but what if he died and did go to hell?!? That torture would be never ending. He got a second chance at life here, but he needs to find accept this gift now before he wants to re-live that experience forever. Sometimes we think for the ones that die, 'it's a good thing, they were in so much pain', but that pain won't end if they receive their "wages" instead of the "gift" of eternal life.