Do you remember Atlas in Greek Mythology. He was a Titan who lost a war with the Olympians. In true ancient Greek Mythology his punishment for losing the war was to stand at the western edge of the earth and hold up the sky on his shoulders. In the ancient myth of Atlas, “he later became the embodiment of the celestial axis around which the heavens revolve.” All of this was done, in order to prevent him from resuming his power and rule.
Today’s common interpretation of the Myth of Atlas depicts his punishment as him being forced to take on the gigantic task of holding the Earth on his shoulders.
Having noted that, we too often find ourselves in the role of Christian Atlases, taking upon the world, and seemingly all of its problems, on our own shoulders. Many of us take on this unthinkable task, in order that we might somehow earn God’s love, acceptance, and forgiveness. We self-inflict this punishment on ourselves because of our sins, and an unbiblical notion that this action might restore our relationship with God.
Well, here’s some good news for all of us: God’s love for us is based on NOTHING of us! Yes that’s right, NOTHING. Here’s the greatest part of that Precept. Since His love for us is based on nothing, WE ARE SECURE! If God’s love for us was based on us, or anything we do or could do, it would surely fail and prove insufficient. However, that just isn’t the truth. His love for us is based on GRACE alone and there’s nothing we can do to earn it! Christians who grasp a full understanding of this Biblical Truth find FREEDOM in their relationship with Christ, NOT PUNISHMENT. Believers who fully grasp this understanding of God’s Love dance on the earth, not try to bear its burden.
My challenge to you is to fully embrace the biblical fact that nothing can separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 5:38-39
*Parts of this post were taken from Brennan Manning’s Reflections for Ragamuffins