A house is on fire and several teens are trapped inside. It is a frightening ordeal for anyone to witness. A woman living nextdoor makes the difficult decision and breaks down their door putting herself at great personal danger to rescue the teenagers stricken inside.
“I was just thinking about them. I just wanted to get them out,” she said. “I just had to take a deep breath and put it in the back of my mind that nobody wanted to help them.” (CBC News, 3 September 2015).
What motivates people to save others at great risk or sacrifice to themselves?
What makes a hero?
A hero is someone who makes a great exploit of personal sacrifice for another person, group of people or simply a cause. Heroes by definition are those who give of themselves for worthy causes. Heroes are admired for their sacrificial love, exploits and commitment to others.
Crucial to understanding earthly heroes is knowing that they must first judge the cause or person worthy of their sacrifice. They find themselves compelled by the worthiness of the person for whom they sacrifice everything. This drives them to great endeavour.
Explorers like Marco Polo, Captain Cooke and Francis Drake all judged that discovery of new lands, peoples and kingdoms were a worthy cause. Parents have judged their children worthy of love and made great sacrifice for their children. Think of the many heroes who have given themselves for others – those they deemed worthy.
Does a hero ever die for an unworthy person?
There is One who went beyond the heroes we often hear of on earth. This sacrifice involved not merely the ultimate sacrifice, but also made it for the unworthy.
Who were the unworthy? Who made the sacrifice?
“For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person–though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die– but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life.” (Romans 5:6-10)
This is available to every enemy of God. “But”, you say, “I’m not an enemy of God!”. The Bible makes it clear that as sinners, we were all enemies of God (Romans 3:23). The good news is that God loved His enemies so much, Jesus died for you and me (John 3:16).
Put all your trust and faith in Jesus. Jesus died for all – for the unborn baby, it’s mum and the abortionist alike.
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