Luke 13: 1-9
In a conversation between the characters and friends Andy and Red in the film "Shawshank Redemption," there is a temptation to fall into the pit of despair on a number of occasions. When the last chance to be freed because of his innocence is thwarted, despair hangs like a cloud. Andy then shares a proverb that carries the rest of the story, "Get busy livin' or get busy dyin'." This proverb carries both Andy and Red through despair and trial, and into freedom.
In Luke 13, Jesus addresses an age old question. Why do people suffer? People of faith throughout history have attempted to attach particular sins to particular consequences, which will lead to despair. Jesus tells his hearers that there is no one to one link between sin and suffering, and people should stop trying to make that link. Jesus thinks all people need to change their ways. God does care about what we do, but Jesus declares that our own cataloging of sins is wasted energy--and actually leads to death. Therefore the choice before us is the same as for Andy and Red. Get busy livin', or get busy dyin'.
Jesus does the dying, so that we can live.
Sermon audio can be played below.