ACCORDING TO ANCIENT LEGEND, Gordius was a poor peasant who became king of Phrygia in Asia Minor. In response to the prophecy of an oracle, as the first man coming into the city in a wagon and approaching the public square and the temple of Zeus, he had been declared king. In gratitude, Gordius dedicated his wagon to the god Zeus. It was placed in the grove of the temple, and the pole of the wagon was tied to the yoke with a very intricate knot that defied untying. No one could untie it. With the passing of time, the saying developed that whoever was successful in untying the knot would be ruler of all of Asia. The story goes that in 333 B.C. Alexander the Great came through in his conquest of the world. Faced with the disturbing difficulty of being unable to untie the Gordian knot, he took his sword and with one decisive stroke cut through it. This is the origin of the expression "cut the Gordian knot," and it is used to describe a situation where a perplexing (and seemingly insurmountable) problem is solved by a quick and decisive action.

 Man is created in the very image of God, but man has become a fallen creature. The presence of sin and the consequent depravity that follows its practice presents a problem that seemingly defies solution. Its universal scope is even as the apostle Paul wrote: "For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God" (Romans 3:23). "For we know the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now" (Romans 8:22). "For the wages of sin is death…" (Romans 6:23). Mankind certainly has made a first-class mess of it. All of the problems of the world are traced back to sin. It is the cause of all heartache and all sorrow (directly or indirectly). Oh what personal, what complicated, problems can come into an individual’s life as the result of sin! So many are victims caught up in the web of their own doings. They are on a collision course with judgment as they speed full throttle on down the dead-end, one-way street of life. Many in despair are at the end of their rope now. The wages of sin say, "You have had it!" You are under condemnation. The sentence is as good as passed and executed. Death and hell await.

 But wait! The Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, has cut the Gordian knot of sin. An utterly desperate and "impossible" situation (to man) calls for a grand and decisive action on the part of Almighty God to absolve the problem once and for all. Man is helplessly and hopelessly lost. But wait! "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life" (John 3:16). Jesus through the virgin birth, and taking the form of man (thus IMMANUEL), completely identified himself with the human race from the fetus to the grave. Although he committed no sin, he tasted the wages of sin like all of mankind and for all of mankind. Now he has nipped death in the bud, sin. "For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him" (II Corinthians 5:21). We were on death row, waiting execution. God has with one decisive stroke cut through all the legal entanglements of the law and said: "YOU’RE FORGIVEN! GO AND SIN NO MORE!" The apostle Paul says that He has "delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son" (Colossians 1:13). And, listen! "Wherefore he is able also to save them [us] to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them [us]" (Hebrews 7:25). We are in the kingdom of his love and grace. We have the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:38). We are a new creation in Christ Jesus. A new start in life is ours, and we are offered strength and help in the time of need. The Gordian knot of sin has been servered!

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