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The Mark of Christ 
Monday, September 19, 2005, 03:16 PM
Yesterday I asked the good folks at worship to write down a blessing in their lives. There were quite a range of answers from sobriety to new jobs, but the overwhelming choice was family.

The Oxford English Dictionary defines:
to bless 1. “to make sacred; to hallow (something)”. The word “bless” is from the Old Teutonic (German) bletsian, from heathen blood sacrifices. German: das Blut. English: blood. “The meaning, then, was ‘to mark (or affect in some way) with blood (or a sacrificial animal)'.”

How appropriate that “blood” relations (either biological or by choice) are considered a blessing!

Yet looking through Christian eyes…we are marked by the blood of Christ, becoming brothers and sisters in the Christian family. (This is why in baptism only the Christian name of the child is used…the “family” name of the baptized is “Christian”.) So by Christ's blessing we are blessed with our Christian family.

Now when I say or hear the phrase “blood of Christ” I will experience not just the sacrifice of Christ but the blessing of Christ bound up in it as well. And isn't that what the best families are…blessing and sacrifice that marks us with love?

Sometimes the congregation blesses the preacher with a sermon and it leaves a mark….

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